Top 300 Pharmacy Drug Cards


Class: Electrolyte, Potassium

Dosage Forms. Capsule, Extended Release: 8 mEq, 10 mEq; Powder for Solution: 20 mEq; Solution: 20 mEq/15 mL, 40 mEq/15 mL; Tablet, Extended Release: 8 mEq, 10 mEq, 15 mEq, 20 mEq


Common FDA Label Indication, Dosing, and Titration.

1. Hypokalemia: Adults, 20-100 mEq/d po divided 1-5 times daily after meals; Children, 3-8 mEq/d po divided 1-5 times daily after meals

2. Hypokalemia, prophylaxis: 20 mEq/d po daily

Off-Label Uses. None

MOA. Potassium is an electrolyte required for maintenance of the excitatory properties of neuromuscular tissues, and the resting membrane potential of cells is related to potassium concentrations, varying directly with the ratio of intracellular to extracellular potassium level.

Drug Characteristics: Potassium Chloride


Medication Safety Issues: Potassium Chloride


Drug Interactions: Potassium Chloride


Adverse Reactions: Potassium Chloride


Efficacy Monitoring Parameters. Monitor serum potassium and adjust dose to maintain serum potassium in the normal range 3.5-5 mEq/L.

Toxicity Monitoring Parameters. SCr, ECG if hypokalemic or hyperkalemic.

Key Patient Counseling Points. Take with food. Take the powder, granule, or oral liquid only after mixing in 4 ounces of water or juice. Crush or break only specifically designed extended-release formulations. Capsules may be opened, sprinkled on apple sauce, and ingested immediately.

Clinical Pearls. The total potassium content in a 70-kg male is approximately 3500 mEq. Some drugs (insulin, β-agonists) decrease potassium levels by causing an intracellular shift of potassium. If replacement does not normalize potassium level, check magnesium levels and calcium levels and replace as necessary.

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