Colesevelam (By mouth)

Introduction

Colesevelam Hydrochloride (koe-le-SEV-e-lam hye-droe-KLOR-ide)

Lowers cholesterol levels and treats type 2 diabetes.

Brand Name(s)

Welchol

When This Medicine Should Not Be Used

How to Use This Medicine

Liquid, Tablet

  • Take your medicine as directed.
  • Take this medicine with a meal and liquid.
  • Powder: Mix the powder with one-half to one cup of water, fruit juice, or a diet soft drink. Stir well and drink right away.
  • Missed dose: Take a dose as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for your next dose, wait until then and take a regular dose. Do not take extra medicine to make up for a missed dose.
  • Store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light.

Drugs and Foods to Avoid

Ask your doctor or pharmacist before using any other medicine, including over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.

  • Some medicines can affect how colesevelam works. Tell your doctor if you are taking any of the following. He may tell you to take your other medicine at least 4 hours before you take colesevelam.
    • A blood thinner, such as warfarin
    • Birth control pills
    • Cyclosporine
    • Glyburide
    • Levothyroxine
    • Metformin
    • Phenytoin

Warnings While Using This Medicine

  • Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.
  • Tell your doctor if you have trouble swallowing, ongoing problems with constipation, phenylketonuria (PKU), a history of vitamin A, D, E, or K deficiency, or you had stomach or bowel surgery.
  • Keep all medicine out of the reach of children. Never share your medicine with anyone.

Possible Side Effects While Using This Medicine

Call your doctor right away if you notice any of these side effects:

  • Allergic reaction: Itching or hives, swelling in your face or hands, swelling or tingling in your mouth or throat, chest tightness, trouble breathing
  • Fever, chills, cough, sore throat, and body aches
  • Headache, dizziness, or blurred vision
  • Sudden and severe stomach pain, nausea, vomiting, fever, and lightheadedness
  • Trouble swallowing
  • Weakness, confusion, drowsiness, increased hunger, fast heartbeat, or shakiness

If you notice these less serious side effects, talk with your doctor:

  • Constipation or nausea
  • Loss of strength
  • Muscle or joint pain
  • Runny or stuffy nose

If you notice other side effects that you think are caused by this medicine, tell your doctor

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088

Version Info

  • Last reviewed on 7/4/2015

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