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Kalexate Side Effects

Generic Name: sodium polystyrene sulfonate

Note: This document contains side effect information about sodium polystyrene sulfonate. Some of the dosage forms listed on this page may not apply to the brand name Kalexate.

For the Consumer

Applies to sodium polystyrene sulfonate: oral powder for suspension, oral suspension

Other dosage forms:

Along with its needed effects, sodium polystyrene sulfonate (the active ingredient contained in Kalexate) may cause some unwanted effects. Although not all of these side effects may occur, if they do occur they may need medical attention.

Check with your doctor immediately if any of the following side effects occur while taking sodium polystyrene sulfonate:

Rare

  • Bloody vomit
  • chest pain
  • cough
  • cough producing mucus
  • difficulty with breathing
  • fever or chills
  • severe stomach pain
  • sneezing
  • sore throat
  • tightness in the chest
  • troubled breathing

Incidence Not Known

  • Confusion
  • constipation
  • decrease in the amount of urine
  • diarrhea
  • dry mouth
  • increased thirst
  • irregular heartbeat
  • loss of appetite
  • muscle cramps in the hands, arms, feet, legs, or face
  • nausea or vomiting
  • noisy, rattling breathing
  • numbness and tingling around the mouth, fingertips, or feet
  • seizures
  • severe constipation
  • swelling of the fingers, hands, feet, or lower legs
  • stomach cramps or pain
  • tremor
  • troubled breathing at rest
  • unusual tiredness or weakness
  • weight gain
  • weight loss

Get emergency help immediately if any of the following symptoms of overdose occur while taking sodium polystyrene sulfonate:

Symptoms of Overdose

  • Dizziness
  • drowsiness
  • fainting
  • fast, slow, or irregular heartbeat
  • lightheadedness
  • muscle spasms (tetany) or twitching
  • pounding or rapid pulse
  • trembling

For Healthcare Professionals

Applies to sodium polystyrene sulfonate: oral suspension, oral and rectal powder, oral and rectal suspension, rectal enema

Gastrointestinal

Rare (0.01% to 0.1%): Intestinal/colonic necrosis

Frequency not reported: Gastric irritation, nausea, vomiting, constipation, diarrhea, fecal impaction, intestinal obstruction, other serious gastrointestinal (GI) adverse reactions

Postmarketing reports: GI concretions/bezoars, ischemic colitis, GI tract ulceration, intestinal perforation, GI stenosis[Ref]

Nausea, vomiting, and constipation have occurred, especially with high doses. In clinical trials, fecal impaction occurred in geriatric patients given large doses; children have experienced impaction with rectal administration. Following oral administration, intestinal obstruction with aluminum hydroxide concretions and bezoar formation occurred in neonates. In postmarketing reports, gastrointestinal tract ulcerations, necrosis, and ischemic colitis may have resulted in intestinal perforation.[Ref]

Metabolic

Frequency not reported: Anorexia, hypokalemia, hypocalcemia, hypomagnesemia, significant sodium retention[Ref]

Nervous system

Postmarketing reports: Grand mal seizure[Ref]

A grand mal seizure occurred in 1 patient with renal dysfunction and concomitant use of this drug and magnesium hydroxide.[Ref]

Respiratory

Postmarketing reports: Acute bronchitis, bronchopneumonia[Ref]

Bronchitis with/without pneumonia occurred after inhalation of particles of this drug.[Ref]

References

1. "Product Information. Kayexalate (sodium polystyrene sulfonate)." Sanofi Winthrop Pharmaceuticals, New York, NY.

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

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

Further information

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

Some side effects may not be reported. You may report them to the FDA.

More about Kalexate (sodium polystyrene sulfonate)

Consumer resources

Other brands: Kayexalate, Kionex

Professional resources

Related treatment guides

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