potassium chloride, K-Dur, K-Lor, K-Tab, Kaon CL, Klorvess, Slow-K, Ten-K, Klotrix, K-Lyte CL

  • Pharmacy Author:
    Omudhome Ogbru, PharmD

    Dr. Ogbru received his Doctorate in Pharmacy from the University of the Pacific School of Pharmacy in 1995. He completed a Pharmacy Practice Residency at the University of Arizona/University Medical Center in 1996. He was a Professor of Pharmacy Practice and a Regional Clerkship Coordinator for the University of the Pacific School of Pharmacy from 1996-99.

  • Medical and Pharmacy Editor: Jay W. Marks, MD
    Jay W. Marks, MD

    Jay W. Marks, MD

    Jay W. Marks, MD, is a board-certified internist and gastroenterologist. He graduated from Yale University School of Medicine and trained in internal medicine and gastroenterology at UCLA/Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles.

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GENERIC NAME: potassium chloride

BRAND NAMES: K-Dur, KLor Con, K-Tab, (Kaon CL, Klorvess, Slow-K, Ten-K, Klotrix, K-Lyte CL are discontinued brands)

DRUG CLASS AND MECHANISM: Potassium preparations are used for supplementing potassium in order to treat or prevent low potassium levels in the blood (hypokalemia). Potassium is a major mineral (electrolyte) that is important for the function of every cell in the body. For example, it is important in nerve conduction, muscle contraction, and kidney function. Normal daily dietary intake of potassium is 40-150 mEq. Potassium deficiency occurs when potassium loss exceeds intake. Potassium depletion may be caused by excessive vomiting or diarrhea, diabetic ketoacidosis, diuretics (for example, furosemide [Lasix]), starvation, and rare disorders of the adrenal glands. Potassium deficiency causes weakness, fatigue, heart rhythm problems, paralysis, and kidney dysfunction.

PRESCRIPTION: Yes

GENERIC AVAILABLE: Yes

PREPARATIONS:

  • Tablet: 20 mEq; Tablets (Extended release): 8, 10, 15, and 20 mEq;
  • Capsules: 8 and 10 mEq.
  • Injection: 1, 1.5, 2, 3, and 4 mEq/ml;
  • Plastic container: 10, 20, 30, and 40 mEq.

STORAGE: Potassium should be stored at room temperature, 15 C to 30 C (59 F to 86 F).

PRESCRIBED FOR: Potassium is used for treating or preventing hypokalemia.

DOSING: The usual recommendation for treatment of hypokalemia in adults is 20-40 mEq 2 to 4 times daily. The dose for prevention is 20 mEq daily. Oral potassium is usually taken with meals and fluids to prevent intestinal problems.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 11/10/2014

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