Potassium citrate (By mouth)

Introduction

Potassium Citrate (poe-TAS-ee-um SIT-rate)

Treats and prevents kidney stones by lowering the amount of acid in urine.

Brand Name(s)

Urocit-K 5, Urocit-K 10, Urocit-K

There may be other brand names for this medicine.

When This Medicine Should Not Be Used

You should not use this medicine if you have had an allergic reaction to potassium citrate, or if you are also using atropine, benztropine (Cogentin®), glycopyrrolate (Robinul®), or a diuretic or "water pill" (such as amiloride, spironolactone, triamterene, Aldactone®, Dyrenium®, or Midamor®). You should not use this medicine if you have adrenal problems, dehydration, uncontrolled diabetes, hyperkalemia (high potassium in the blood), kidney failure, tissue injury, or stomach problems (such as peptic ulcer, bowel blockage, or digestion problems).

How to Use This Medicine

Long Acting Tablet

  • Your doctor will tell you how much of this medicine to use and how often. Do not use more medicine or use it more often than your doctor tells you to.
  • It is best to take this medicine with a meal or bedtime snack, or within 30 minutes after meals.
  • Carefully follow your doctor's instructions about any special diet.
  • Swallow the extended-release tablet whole. Do not crush, break, or chew it.
  • Tell your doctor if you have trouble swallowing the tablets, or if the tablet seems to stick or gets stuck in your throat.
  • While taking the extended-release form of this medicine, part of the tablet may pass into your stools. This is normal and is nothing to worry about.
  • Drink extra fluids so you will pass more urine while you are using this medicine. This will keep your kidneys working well and help prevent kidney problems.

If a dose is missed:

  • If you miss a dose or forget to use your medicine, use it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose, wait until then to use the medicine and skip the missed dose. Do not use extra medicine to make up for a missed dose.

How to Store and Dispose of This Medicine

  • Store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light.
  • Ask your pharmacist, doctor, or health caregiver about the best way to dispose of any outdated medicine or medicine no longer needed.
  • Keep all medicine away from children and never share your medicine with anyone.

Drugs and Foods to Avoid

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

  • Make sure your doctor knows if you are also using digoxin (Lanoxin®) or a diuretic or "water pill" (such as hydrochlorothiazide [HCTZ], furosemide, torsemide, Demadex®, or Lasix®).
  • Do not eat salty foods or use salt substitutes or extra table salt while you are taking this medicine.

Warnings While Using This Medicine

  • Make sure your doctor knows if you are pregnant or breastfeeding, or if you have kidney disease, heart disease, mineral imbalance (such as high or low sodium, chloride, or carbon dioxide in the blood), or a condition called acidosis (high acid in the blood).
  • Hyperkalemia (high potassium in the blood) may occur while you are using this medicine. Stop using this medicine and check with your doctor right away if you have the following symptoms: abdominal or stomach pain; confusion; difficulty with breathing; irregular heartbeat; nausea or vomiting; nervousness; numbness or tingling in the hands, feet, or lips; shortness of breath; or weakness or heaviness of the legs.
  • Stop using this medicine and check with your doctor right away if you have bloody or black, tarry stools; constipation; severe stomach pain; or vomiting of blood or material that looks like coffee grounds. These may be symptoms of a serious stomach problem.
  • Your doctor will need to check your blood or urine at regular visits while you are using this medicine. Be sure to keep all appointments. Your heart rate will also be monitored by your doctor.

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
  • Bloody or black, tarry stools.
  • Confusion, weakness, uneven heartbeat, shortness of breath, or numbness or tingling in your hands, feet, or lips.
  • Severe stomach pain or constipation.
  • Vomiting of blood or material that looks like coffee grounds.

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

  • Diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, or mild stomach pain or discomfort.

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 06/12/2013

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This page was last updated: June 18, 2013

         
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