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Welchol (Oral Suspension)

Generic Name: Colesevelam Oral Suspension (koh le SEV a lam)
Brand Name: Welchol

Medically reviewed by Drugs.com. Last updated on Jun 9, 2019.

Uses of Welchol:

  • It is used to lower cholesterol.
  • It is used to lower blood sugar in patients with high blood sugar (diabetes).

What do I need to tell my doctor BEFORE I take Welchol?

For all uses of Welchol (colesevelam oral suspension):

  • If you have an allergy to colesevelam or any other part of Welchol (colesevelam oral suspension).
  • If you are allergic to any drugs like this one, any other drugs, foods, or other substances. Tell your doctor about the allergy and what signs you had, like rash; hives; itching; shortness of breath; wheezing; cough; swelling of face, lips, tongue, or throat; or any other signs.
  • If you have high triglycerides or have ever had pancreatitis caused by high triglycerides.
  • If you have a bowel block.
  • If you have a slow moving GI (gastrointestinal) tract or have had stomach or bowel surgery.

If using for high blood sugar:

  • If you have any of these health problems: Acidic blood problem or type 1 diabetes.

This is not a list of all drugs or health problems that interact with Welchol (colesevelam oral suspension).

Tell your doctor and pharmacist about all of your drugs (prescription or OTC, natural products, vitamins) and health problems. You must check to make sure that it is safe for you to take Welchol (colesevelam oral suspension) with all of your drugs and health problems. Do not start, stop, or change the dose of any drug without checking with your doctor.

What are some things I need to know or do while I take Welchol?

  • Tell all of your health care providers that you take Welchol (colesevelam oral suspension). This includes your doctors, nurses, pharmacists, and dentists.
  • High triglyceride levels have happened with Welchol (colesevelam oral suspension). Tell your doctor if you have ever had high triglyceride levels.
  • Have blood work checked as you have been told by the doctor. Talk with the doctor.
  • If you have high blood sugar (diabetes), you will need to watch your blood sugar closely.
  • Some other drugs may need to be taken at some other time than Welchol (colesevelam oral suspension). If you take other drugs, check with your doctor or pharmacist to see if you need to take them at some other time than Welchol (colesevelam oral suspension).
  • If you have phenylketonuria (PKU), talk with your doctor. Some products have phenylalanine.
  • Birth control taken by mouth may not work as well to prevent pregnancy if taken at the same time as Welchol (colesevelam oral suspension). If you are taking birth control by mouth, take it at least 4 hours before taking Welchol (colesevelam oral suspension).
  • Tell your doctor if you are pregnant, plan on getting pregnant, or are breast-feeding. You will need to talk about the benefits and risks to you and the baby.

How is this medicine (Welchol) best taken?

Use Welchol (colesevelam oral suspension) as ordered by your doctor. Read all information given to you. Follow all instructions closely.

  • Take with meals.
  • Follow the diet and workout plan that your doctor told you about.
  • Drink lots of noncaffeine liquids unless told to drink less liquid by your doctor.
  • Mix with 1 cup (8 ounces/240 mL) of water, fruit juice, or diet soda. Stir well and drink.
  • Do not take dry powder.

What do I do if I miss a dose?

  • Take a missed dose as soon as you think about it, with a meal.
  • If it is close to the time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your normal time.
  • Do not take 2 doses at the same time or extra doses.

What are some side effects that I need to call my doctor about right away?

WARNING/CAUTION: Even though it may be rare, some people may have very bad and sometimes deadly side effects when taking a drug. Tell your doctor or get medical help right away if you have any of the following signs or symptoms that may be related to a very bad side effect:

  • Signs of an allergic reaction, like rash; hives; itching; red, swollen, blistered, or peeling skin with or without fever; wheezing; tightness in the chest or throat; trouble breathing, swallowing, or talking; unusual hoarseness; or swelling of the mouth, face, lips, tongue, or throat.
  • Signs of a pancreas problem (pancreatitis) like very bad stomach pain, very bad back pain, or very bad upset stomach or throwing up.
  • Trouble swallowing.
  • Severe constipation or stomach pain. These may be signs of a severe bowel problem.

What are some other side effects of Welchol?

All drugs may cause side effects. However, many people have no side effects or only have minor side effects. Call your doctor or get medical help if any of these side effects or any other side effects bother you or do not go away:

These are not all of the side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, call your doctor. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects.

You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088. You may also report side effects at http://www.fda.gov/medwatch.

If OVERDOSE is suspected:

If you think there has been an overdose, call your poison control center or get medical care right away. Be ready to tell or show what was taken, how much, and when it happened.

How do I store and/or throw out Welchol?

  • Store at room temperature.
  • Store in a dry place. Do not store in a bathroom.
  • Keep all drugs in a safe place. Keep all drugs out of the reach of children and pets.
  • Throw away unused or expired drugs. Do not flush down a toilet or pour down a drain unless you are told to do so. Check with your pharmacist if you have questions about the best way to throw out drugs. There may be drug take-back programs in your area.

Consumer information use

  • If your symptoms or health problems do not get better or if they become worse, call your doctor.
  • Do not share your drugs with others and do not take anyone else's drugs.
  • Keep a list of all your drugs (prescription, natural products, vitamins, OTC) with you. Give this list to your doctor.
  • Talk with the doctor before starting any new drug, including prescription or OTC, natural products, or vitamins.
  • Some drugs may have another patient information leaflet. Check with your pharmacist. If you have any questions about Welchol (colesevelam oral suspension), please talk with your doctor, nurse, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
  • If you think there has been an overdose, call your poison control center or get medical care right away. Be ready to tell or show what was taken, how much, and when it happened.

Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.

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