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CHOLESTYRAMINE (koe LESS tir a meen) is used to lower cholesterol in patients who are at risk of heart disease or stroke. This medicine is only for patients whose cholesterol level is not controlled by diet.
This medicine may be used for other purposes; ask your health care provider or pharmacist if you have questions.
They need to know if you have any of these conditions:
blocked bile duct
an unusual or allergic reaction to cholestyramine, other medicines, foods, dyes, or preservatives
pregnant or trying to get pregnant
Do not take this medicine in the dry form. It must be mixed with a liquid before swallowing. Follow the directions on the prescription label. Place the powder in a glass or cup. Add between 2 and 6 ounces of fluid. This can be water, milk, pulpy fruit juice, fluid soup, or other liquid. Mix well and drink all of the liquid. Take your doses at regular intervals. Do not take your medicine more often than directed.
Talk to your pediatrician regarding the use of this medicine in children. Special care may be needed.
Overdosage: If you think you have taken too much of this medicine contact a poison control center or emergency room at once.
NOTE: This medicine is only for you. Do not share this medicine with others.
If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose, take only that dose. Do not take double or extra doses.
female hormones, like estrogens or progestins and birth control pills
heart medicines such as digoxin or digitoxin
Take other drugs at least 1 hour before or 4 hours after this medicine, to avoid decreasing their absorption.
This list may not describe all possible interactions. Give your health care provider a list of all the medicines, herbs, non-prescription drugs, or dietary supplements you use. Also tell them if you smoke, drink alcohol, or use illegal drugs. Some items may interact with your medicine.
Visit your doctor or health care professional for regular checks on your progress. Your blood fats and other tests will be measured from time to time.
This medicine is only part of a total cholesterol-lowering program. Your health care professional or dietician can suggest a low-cholesterol and low-fat diet that will reduce your risk of getting heart and blood vessel disease. Avoid alcohol and smoking, and keep a proper exercise schedule.
To reduce the chance of getting constipated, drink plenty of water and increase the amount of fiber in your diet. Ask your doctor or health care professional for advice if you are constipated.
Side effects that you should report to your doctor or health care professional as soon as possible:
allergic reactions like skin rash, itching or hives, swelling of the face, lips, or tongue
bloody or black, tarry stools
severe stomach pain with nausea and vomiting
Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (report to your doctor or health care professional if they continue or are bothersome):
constipation or diarrhea
This list may not describe all possible side effects. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
Keep out of the reach of children.
Store at room temperature between 15 and 30 degrees C (59 and 86 degrees F). Throw away any unused medicine after the expiration date.