Patiromer

Patiromer treats high potassium levels in the blood. Take your other medications, that are taken by mouth, at least 3 hours before or 3 hours after patiromer.

Patiromer Overview

Reviewed: January 9, 2015
Updated: 

Patiromer is a prescription medication used to lower high potassium levels in the blood. 

It belongs to a group of drugs called potassium binder. These lower the potassium in the body by binding to potassium, decreasing the absorption of potassium. 

This medication comes in a powder which is mixed by water and taken by mouth. It is typically taken once a day, with food. 

Common side effects of patiromer include constipation, low levels of magnesium, and diarrhea.

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Patiromer Cautionary Labels

precautionsprecautionsprecautionsprecautionsprecautions

Uses of Patiromer

Patiromer is a prescription medication used to lower high potassium levels in the blood.

It is not to be used as an emergency treatment for severe (life-threatening) high potassium levels. 

It is not known if patiromer is safe and effective in children.

This medication may be prescribed for other uses. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.

Patiromer Brand Names

Patiromer may be found in some form under the following brand names:

Patiromer Drug Class

Side Effects of Patiromer

Serious side effects have been reported with patiromer. See the “Patiromer Precautions” section.

Common side effects of patiromer include the following:

  • constipation
  • diarrhea
  • nausea
  • stomach discomfort
  • gas
  • low levels of magnesium

This is not a complete list of patiromer side effects. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.

Tell your doctor if you have any side effect that bothers you or that does not go away.

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

Patiromer Interactions

No drug interactions have been conducted by the manufacturer. However, you should tell your doctor about all the medicines you take including prescription and non-prescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements. Not all drug interactions are known or reported and new drug interactions are continually being reported.

Patiromer may affect other medicines taken by mouth if they are taken too close together. This can cause you to have too little of other medicines in your body, which may affect the way your other medicines work. 

As a result, take your other medications, that are taken by mouth, at least 3 hours before or 3 hours after patiromer.  

Patiromer Precautions

Serious side effects have been reported with Patiromer including the following:

  • Low levels of magnesium in your blood (hypomagnesemia). Low levels of magnesium in the blood can occur when taking Veltassa. Your doctor will check the magnesium levels in your blood during treatment with patiromer. Your doctor may prescribe a magnesium supplement if you have low levels of magnesium in your blood. 
  • Slowing of the movements of the digestive system. Veltassa may not work and may worsen stomach and intestine conditions. Tell your doctor if you have severe constipation, have bowel obstruction or impaction, and/or have problems with your bowels after bowel surgery.

Do not take patiromer if you are allergic to patiromer or to any of its ingredients.

Patiromer Food Interactions

Medications can interact with certain foods. In some cases, this may be harmful and your doctor may advise you to avoid certain foods. In the case of patiromer, salt substitutes containing potassium should be avoided.

Follow the diet that your doctor has prescribed for you.

Inform MD

Before taking patiromer, tell your doctor about all of your medical conditions. Especially tell your doctor if you:

  • are allergic to patiromer or to any of its ingredients
  • have problems having a bowel movement, including if you have severe constipation, a blockage (obstruction) in your bowel, or dry hard stool that will not pass out of your rectum (impaction)
  • have problems with your bowels after bowel surgery
  • are pregnant or plan to become pregnant
  • are breastfeeding or plan to breastfeed

Tell your doctor about all the medicines you take including prescription and non-prescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements.

Patiromer and Pregnancy

Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant.

Patiromer is not absorbed into the body, so it is not expected to harm the unborn baby. Your doctor will determine if patiromer can be given to you during pregnancy. 

Patiromer and Lactation

Tell your doctor if you are breastfeeding or plan to breastfeed.

Patiromer is not absorbed into the body, so breastfeeding while taking patiromer is not expected to harm the infant. Your doctor will determine if you should breastfeed during treatment with patiromer. 

Patiromer Usage

Take patiromer exactly as prescribed. Your doctor may change your dose if needed.

This medication comes in a powder which is mixed by water and taken by mouth. It is typically taken once a day, with food. 

Mix patiromer with water only. 

Prepare each dose of patiromer separately

Follow the diet that your doctor has prescribed for you.

To mix a dose of patiromer:

  • Pour 30 mL (1 ounce) of water into an empty glass or cup
  • Carefully pour all of the packet contents into the glass or cup with the water. You may need more than 1 packet of patiromer for your prescribed dose.
  • Stir the mixture well.
  • Pour 60 mL (2 ounces) of water into the glass or cup containing the mixture.
  • Stir the mixture well. The powder will not completely dissolve and the mixture will look cloudy.
  • Drink the mixture right away.
  • If any powder is left in the glass or cup after drinking, add more water, stir the mixture, and drink the mixture right away. Repeat as needed to make sure you take your entire dose of patiromer. Do not take patiromer that has not been mixed with water.

Do not heat, microwave, or add patiromer to heated foods or liquids. 

Take your other medications, that are taken by mouth, at least 3 hours before or 3 hours after patiromer.  

Patiromer Dosage

Take this medication exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Follow the directions on your prescription label carefully.

The dose your doctor recommends may be based on the following:

  • the condition being treated
  • other medical conditions you have
  • other medications you are taking
  • how you respond to this medication
  • potassium levels

The recommended starting dose of Veltassa (patiromer) is 8.4 grams once daily. Your doctor will adjust your dose by 8.4 grams daily as needed at one-week intervals to reach the correct potassium level. 

Patiromer Overdose

If you take too much patiromer, call your healthcare provider or local Poison Control Center, or seek emergency medical attention right away.

Other Requirements

  • Patiromer should be stored in the refrigerator at 2°C to 8°C (36°F to 46°F).
  • If stored at room temperature (25°C ± 2°C [77°F ± 4°F]), patiromer must be used within 3 months of being taken out of the refrigerator. For either storage condition, do not use patiromer after the expiration date printed on the packet.
  • Avoid exposure to excessive heat above 40°C (104°F).
  • Keep this and all medicines out of the reach of children.