Generic name: potassium chloride (poe TASS ee um)
Brand name: Klor-Con
Drug class: Minerals and electrolytes
Klor-Con contains potassium chloride, a mineral that is found in many foods and is needed for several functions of your body, especially the beating of your heart.
Klor-Con is used to prevent or to treat low blood levels of potassium (hypokalemia). Potassium levels can be low as a result of a disease or from taking certain medicines, or after a prolonged illness with diarrhea or vomiting.
Klor-Con is available as effervescent tablets, extended release tablets, extended release capsules (sprinkle), and powder for oral solution.
You should not use Klor-Con if you have high levels of potassium in your blood (hyperkalemia), or if you also take a "potassium-sparing" diuretic.
To be sure Klor-Con is helping your condition, your blood may need to be tested often. Your heart rate and rhythm may also be checked using an electrocardiograph or ECG (sometimes called an EKG) to measure electrical activity of the heart. Do not miss any scheduled appointments.
Serious side effects of potassium include uneven heartbeat, muscle weakness or limp feeling, severe stomach pain, and numbness or tingling in your hands, feet, or mouth.
Do not stop taking Klor-Con without first talking to your doctor. If you stop taking potassium suddenly, your condition may become worse.
Do not crush, chew, break, or suck on an extended-release tablet or capsule. Swallow the pill whole. Breaking or crushing the pill may cause too much of the drug to be released at one time. Sucking on a potassium tablet can irritate your mouth or throat. Take Klor-Con with food or just after a meal.
Before taking this medicine
You should not use Klor-Con if you are allergic to potassium chloride, or if:
- you have high levels of potassium in your blood (hyperkalemia); or
- you take a "potassium-sparing" diuretic (water pill) such as amiloride, spironolactone, or triamterene.
To make sure Klor-Con is safe for you, tell your doctor if you have ever had:
- heart problems;
- high blood pressure;
- liver or kidney disease;
- a large tissue injury such as a severe burn;
- an electrolyte imbalance (such as low levels of calcium or magnesium in your blood);
- trouble swallowing;
- slow digestion;
- stomach bleeding, an ulcer, or a blockage in your stomach or intestines;
- an adrenal gland disorder;
- diabetes; or
- severe dehydration.
Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.
How should I take Klor-Con?
Take Klor-Con exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Follow all directions on your prescription label and read all medication guides or instruction sheets. Your doctor may occasionally change your dose.
Take Klor-Con with food if the medicine upsets your stomach.
Always follow directions on the medicine label about giving this medicine to a child.
Take the tablet or capsule with a full glass of water.
Do not crush, chew, or suck on a potassium tablet or capsule. Sucking on the pill could irritate your mouth or throat.
Measure liquid medicine carefully. Use the dosing syringe provided, or use a medicine dose-measuring device (not a kitchen spoon). Mix the oral solution with least 4 ounces of water before taking it.
You may need to follow a special diet while using Klor-Con. Follow all instructions of your doctor or dietitian. Learn about the foods to eat or avoid to help control your condition.
Call your doctor if you have trouble swallowing a Klor-Con capsule or tablet. You may be able to dissolve the tablet in water, or mix the medicine from a capsule with soft food. Carefully follow your doctor's instructions.
You may need frequent medical tests. Your heart function may need to be checked using an electrocardiograph or ECG (sometimes called an EKG). Even if you have no symptoms, tests can help your doctor determine if this medicine is effective.
Some tablets are made with a shell that is not absorbed or melted in the body. Part of this shell may appear in your stool. This is normal and will not make the medicine less effective.
Store at room temperature away from moisture, heat, and light. Keep the medication in a closed container.
What happens if I miss a dose?
Take the medicine as soon as you can, but skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next dose. Do not take two doses at one time.
What happens if I overdose?
Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222.
Overdose symptoms may include stomach pain, vomiting, irregular heartbeats, chest pain, muscle weakness, loss of movement, numbness or tingling, or feeling light-headed.
What should I avoid while taking Klor-Con?
Do not use potassium supplements or other products that contain potassium, unless your doctor has told you to. Salt substitutes or low-salt foods often contain potassium. Read the label of any food or medicine to see if it contains potassium.
Klor-Con side effects
Get emergency medical help if you have signs of an allergic reaction to Klor-Con: hives; difficult breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.
Stop using Klor-Con and call your doctor at once if you have:
- severe throat irritation;
- chest pain, trouble breathing;
- stomach bloating, severe vomiting, severe stomach pain;
- high potassium level - nausea, weakness, tingly feeling, chest pain, irregular heartbeats, loss of movement; or
- signs of stomach bleeding - bloody or tarry stools, coughing up blood or vomit that looks like coffee grounds.
Common Klor-Con side effects may include:
- nausea, vomiting, diarrhea;
- gas, stomach pain; or
- the appearance of a Klor-Con tablet in your stool.
This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
What other drugs will affect Klor-Con?
Tell your doctor about all your other medicines, especially:
- medicine to prevent organ transplant rejection;
- a diuretic or "water pill"; or
- heart or blood pressure medication.
This list is not complete. Other drugs may interact with potassium chloride, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Not all possible drug interactions are listed here.