GENERIC NAME: potassium chloride
BRAND NAMES: K-Dur, KLor Con, K-Tab, Klorvess, K-Lyte CL
Discontinued Brands: Kaon CL, Slow-K, Ten-K, Klotrix
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:
PRESCRIBED FOR: Potassium is used for treating or preventing hypokalemia.
SIDE EFFECTS: Common reactions to potassium are primarily gastrointestinal and include:
Quick GuideVitamin D Deficiency: How Much Vitamin D Is Enough?
Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration
You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.
Need help identifying pills and medications?
Use the pill identifier tool on RxList.