COLESTYRAMINE POWDER FOR ORAL SUSPENSION

Active substance: COLESTYRAMINE RESIN

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COLESTYRAMINE POWDER
FOR ORAL SUSPENSION
PATIENT INFORMATION LEAFLET
The name of your medicine is Colestyramine
Powder for Oral Suspension, which will be called
Colestyramine Powder throughout this leaflet.
Read all of this leaflet carefully before you
start taking this medicine.
• Keep this leaflet. You may need to read it again.
• If you have any further questions, ask your
doctor or pharmacist.
• This medicine has been prescribed for you.
Do not pass it on to others. It may harm them,
even if their symptoms are the same as yours.
• If any of the side effects gets serious, or if
you notice any side effects not listed in this
leaflet, please tell your doctor or pharmacist.
IN THIS LEAFLET:
1. What Colestyramine Powder is and what it
is used for
2. Before you take Colestyramine Powder
3. How you take Colestyramine Powder
4. Possible side effects
5. How to store Colestyramine Powder
6. Further information

1

WHAT COLESTYRAMINE POWDER IS
AND WHAT IT IS USED FOR

2

BEFORE YOU TAKE COLESTYRAMINE
POWDER

Do not take Colestyramine Powder if you:
• are allergic to colestyramine or any of the
other ingredients of Colestyramine Powder
(see list of ingredients in Section 6)
• have a complete blockage of the bile duct.
Take special care with Colestyramine Powder
The long-term use of Colestyramine Powder
may cause:
• increased bleeding. Your doctor may
prescribe vitamin K to help prevent this
• hyperchloraemic acidosis (acidic blood)
particularly in children and smaller patients
or if you have a kidney disorder or if you are
volume depleted (dehydrated)
• serum or red cell folate deficiency (lack of
folic acid - a B vitamin), especially in
children with hypercholesterolaemia. Your
doctor may prescribe folic acid if this happens
• vitamin A and D deficiency. Your doctor may
prescribe vitamin supplements.
Taking other medicines
Please tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are
taking the following medicine:
• spironolactone (a diuretic or water tablet).
Please tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are
taking, or have recently taken, any other
medicines, including medicines obtained
without a prescription. Colestyramine Powder
may interact with many medicines by stopping
them getting into the bloodstream. To help
prevent this, any other medicines you are taking
should be taken at a different time - at least one
hour before, or 4 to 6 hours after Colestyramine
Powder. If you feel that Colestyramine Powder
may be changing an effect of another medicine
you are taking, you should tell your doctor.
Pregnancy and breast-feeding
You should not take Colestyramine Powder
while pregnant or breast-feeding unless your
doctor tells you to. Ask your doctor or pharmacist
for advice before taking any medicine.
Driving and using machines
There are no reported effects of Colestyramine
Powder on driving or operating machinery.
Important Information about some of the
Ingredients of Colestyramine Powder
Colestyramine Powder contains Sunset Yellow
(E110) and Aspartame. Sunset Yellow may
cause allergic reactions. Aspartame is a source
of phenylalanine, which may be harmful for
people with phenylketonuria.

Colestyramine Powder is a sachet containing 4 g
of the active ingredient colestyramine.
Colestyramine is used to lower your body's
level of cholesterol (a type of fat). Colestyramine
works in the digestive tract to absorb the
cholesterol-containing bile acids, which then
pass out through the body in the faeces.
Colestyramine Powder is used to:
• Prevent heart disease in men aged
35-59 years of age who have raised
cholesterol levels that have not been
reduced by dieting and other methods.
• Reduce cholesterol in patients who have
raised cholesterol levels, either alone or with
diet, exercise, or statins (other types of
cholesterol lowering drugs).
• Relieve pruritus (itching), a symptom in
patients with biliary cirrhosis or partial
obstruction (inflammation or blockage of the
bile duct in the liver).
• Relieve diarrhoea caused by: ileal resection
(removal of part of the ileum in the digestive
tract), Crohn's disease (inflammation of the
digestive tract), vagotomy (removal of a
3 HOW TO TAKE COLESTYRAMINE
POWDER
nerve to reduce stomach acid), and diabetic
vagal neuropathy (disease of the same
Dosage
nerve caused by diabetes).
Always take Colestyramine Powder exactly as
• Control of diarrhoea caused by radiation.
your doctor has told you. You should check with
your doctor or pharmacist if you are not sure.

Adults
• Your dose will be increased over 3-4 weeks
to the usual dose. The usual daily dose for
the prevention of heart disease and to reduce
cholesterol is 3-6 sachets (12 to 24 grams). The
maximum daily dose is 9 sachets (36 grams).
The daily dose can be taken in single or
divided doses up to 4 times a day.
• For the relief of diarrhoea, the usual daily
dose is 3-6 sachets (12 to 24 grams). If your
doctor has told you that you also suffer from
bile acid malabsorption (causing weight loss
and foul-smelling stools), and you have
seen no improvement in 3 days, talk to your
doctor, who will start another treatment.
• For the relief of pruritus, the usual daily
dose is 1-2 sachets (4-8 grams).
Children aged 6 to 12 years
The starting dose depends on the child's
weight. The adult dose is multiplied by the
child's weight (in kilograms) and divided by 70.
Children under 6 years of age
This medicine is not recommended for
children under 6 years of age.
Elderly
Patients may need a reduced dose.
Method of administration
Do not take this medicine in its dry form. It
could cause you to choke. Follow the instruction
below for the preparation of the medicine.
The contents of one sachet of Colestyramine
Powder are added to 120 - 180 ml of water or
noncarbonated drink such as skimmed milk or
fruit juice and stirred for one to two minutes.
Colestyramine Powder may also be mixed in
thin soups or pulpy fruits with a high moisture
content.
If you take more Colestyramine Powder than
you should
It is important to stick to the dose on the label of
your medicine. If you or someone else takes too
many sachets all together, contact your doctor,
pharmacist or hospital emergency department
immediately. Always take any sachets left over
with you and also the box, as this will allow
easier identification of the medicine.
If you forget to take Colestyramine Powder
If you forget to take a dose, take it as soon as
you remember. Do not take a double dose to
make up for a forgotten dose if it is almost
time for your next dose.
If you stop taking Colestyramine Powder
If you take Colestyramine Powder along with
another medicine that binds to colestyramine,
and then you stop taking Colestyramine
Powder, the amount of another medicine in
your body will increase and may cause
toxicity. Talk to your doctor before you stop
taking Colestyramine Powder. If you have any
further questions on the use of this product,
ask your doctor or pharmacist.

4

POSSIBLE SIDE EFFECTS

Like all medicines, Colestyramine Powder can
cause side effects, although not everybody
gets them. All medicines can cause allergic
reactions, although serious allergic reactions
are very rare. Tell your doctor straight away if
you get any sudden wheeziness, difficulty in
breathing, swelling of the eyelids, face or lips,
rash or itching (especially affecting your whole
body).
The most frequent side effects seen are:
• Constipation (often disappears with time)
• diarrhoea (with large doses of colestyramine).
Other side effects include:
• hyperchloraemic acidosis (acidic blood
caused by too much chloride)
• increased calcium in the urine (particularly
in children and small patients - this can
cause osteoporosis (brittle bones)).
A few patients have experienced:
• skin irritation or rash
• intestinal obstruction
• taste disturbance.
If any of the side effects gets serious, or if you
notice any side effects not listed in this leaflet,
please tell your doctor or pharmacist.

5

HOW TO STORE COLESTYRAMINE
POWDER

Colestyramine Powder should be kept out of
the reach and sight of children.
Store in a dry place, below 30°C. Do not use
Colestyramine Powder after the expiry date
which is stated on the carton. The expiry date
refers to the last day of that month. Medicines
should not be disposed of via wastewater or
household waste. Ask your pharmacist how to
dispose of medicines no longer required. These
measures will help to protect the environment.

6

FURTHER INFORMATION

What Colestyramine Powder contains
The active substance is Colestyramine resin.
The other ingredients are: Aspartame powder,
Propylene glycol alginate, Colloidal silicon
dioxide, Citric acid anhydrous, Sunset Yellow
(E110) and Orange flavour.
What Colestyramine Powder looks like and
contents of the pack
Sachets are packed in cartons of 30, 50, 60 or 180.
Not all pack sizes may be marketed.
Marketing Authorisation Holder and
Manufacturer
TEVA UK Limited, Eastbourne, BN22 9AG.
This leaflet was last revised in September 2010
PL 00289/1488

55227-B

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Source: Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency

Disclaimer: Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided here is accurate, up-to-date and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. Drug information contained herein may be time sensitive. This information has been compiled for use by healthcare practitioners and consumers in the United States. The absence of a warning for a given drug or combination thereof in no way should be construed to indicate that the drug or combination is safe, effective or appropriate for any given patient. If you have questions about the substances you are taking, check with your doctor, nurse or pharmacist.

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