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Cholestyramine Light Side Effects

Generic Name: cholestyramine

Note: This page contains information about the side effects of cholestyramine. Some of the dosage forms included on this document may not apply to the brand name Cholestyramine Light.

For the Consumer

Applies to cholestyramine: oral powder for suspension, oral tablet

In some animal studies, cholestyramine (the active ingredient contained in Cholestyramine Light) was found to cause tumors. It is not known whether cholestyramine causes tumors in humans.

In addition to its needed effects, some unwanted effects may be caused by cholestyramine. In the event that any of these side effects do occur, they may require medical attention.

Major Side Effects

You should check with your doctor immediately if any of these side effects occur when taking cholestyramine:

Rare
  • Black, tarry stools
  • stomach pain (severe) with nausea and vomiting

Severity: Moderate

If any of the following side effects occur while taking cholestyramine, check with your doctor or nurse as soon as possible:

More common:
  • Constipation
Rare
  • Loss of weight (sudden)

Minor Side Effects

Some of the side effects that can occur with cholestyramine may not need medical attention. As your body adjusts to the medicine during treatment these side effects may go away. Your health care professional may also be able to tell you about ways to reduce or prevent some of these side effects. If any of the following side effects continue, are bothersome or if you have any questions about them, check with your health care professional:

More common:
  • Heartburn or indigestion
  • nausea or vomiting
  • stomach pain
Less common:
  • Belching
  • bloating
  • diarrhea
  • dizziness
  • headache

For Healthcare Professionals

Applies to cholestyramine: compounding powder, oral powder for reconstitution

General

The most frequently reported side effect is constipation.[Ref]

Gastrointestinal

Intestinal obstruction occurred rarely and 2 deaths in pediatric patients were reported.[Ref]

Very common (10% or more): Constipation
Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Tongue irritation, irritation of perianal area, abdominal discomfort/pain/distention, flatulence, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, heartburn, dyspepsia, steatorrhea
Rare (less than 0.1%): Intestinal obstruction
Frequency not reported: Rectal bleeding, black stools, hemorrhoidal bleeding, bleeding from known duodenal ulcer, dysphagia, hiccoughs, ulcer attack, sour taste, pancreatitis, rectal pain, diverticulitis, eructation, dental bleeding, dental caries, calcification of gallbladder, tooth discoloration, erosion of tooth enamel[Ref]

Cardiovascular

Frequency not reported: Claudication, angina, arteritis, thrombophlebitis, myocardial infarction, myocardial ischemia, postprandial angina increased[Ref]

Musculoskeletal

Common (1% to 10%): Osteoporosis
Frequency not reported: Backache, arthritis, muscle/joint pain[Ref]

Hematologic

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Bleeding
Frequency not reported: Prothrombin time increased, prothrombin time decreased, anemia, hypoprothrombinemia[Ref]

Metabolic

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Anorexia, hyperchloremic acidosis, Vitamin A deficiency, Vitamin K deficiency[Ref]

Dermatologic

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Rash, skin irritation
Frequency not reported: Ecchymosis, xanthoma of hands/fingers, urticaria[Ref]

Hepatic

Frequency not reported: Liver function test abnormal[Ref]

Nervous system

Frequency not reported: Headache, paresthesia, syncope, dizziness, drowsiness, femoral nerve pain[Ref]

Other

Frequency not reported: Vertigo, weight loss, weight gain, glands swollen, edema, chest pain, tinnitus[Ref]

Ocular

Frequency not reported: Arcus juvenilis, uveitis, night blindness[Ref]

Genitourinary

Frequency not reported: Hematuria, dysuria, burnt odor to urine, diuresis[Ref]

Respiratory

Frequency not reported: Asthma, wheezing, shortness of breath[Ref]

Psychiatric

Frequency not reported: Libido increased[Ref]

References

1. Cerner Multum, Inc. "UK Summary of Product Characteristics." O 0

2. "Product Information. Questran (cholestyramine)." Par Pharmaceutical Inc, Chestnut Ridge, NY.

3. Cerner Multum, Inc. "Australian Product Information." O 0

4. "Product Information. Cholestyramine Light (cholestyramine)." Sandoz Laboratories, Eon Division, Lake Success, NY.

Not all side effects for Cholestyramine Light may be reported. You should always consult a doctor or healthcare professional for medical advice. Side effects can be reported to the FDA here.

Disclaimer: Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided is accurate, up-to-date and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. In addition, the drug information contained herein may be time sensitive and should not be utilized as a reference resource beyond the date hereof. This material does not endorse drugs, diagnose patients, or recommend therapy. This information is a reference resource designed as supplement to, and not a substitute for, the expertise, skill , knowledge, and judgement of healthcare practitioners in patient care. The absence of a warning for a given drug or combination thereof in no way should be construed to indicate safety, effectiveness, or appropriateness for any given patient. Drugs.com does not assume any responsibility for any aspect of healthcare administered with the aid of materials provided. The information contained herein is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. If you have questions about the substances you are taking, check with your doctor, nurse, or pharmacist.

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