potassium chloride; K-Dur, KLor Con, K-Tab, Kaon CL, Klorvess, Slow-K, Ten-K, Klotrix, K-Lyte CL (cont.)

Pharmacy Author:
Medical and Pharmacy Editor:

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

SIDE EFFECTS: Common reactions to potassium are primarily gastrointestinal and include:

More important side effects include:

  • high blood potassium levels,
  • abnormal heart beats,
  • bleeding or perforation of the stomach or small intestine from ulcers, and
  • narrowing (stricture) of the small intestine from healed ulcers.

Irritation and damage to the stomach can be reduced by taking potassium supplements with meals or reducing the dose.




  • 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).


  • 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.
  • Controlled release tablets should be swallowed whole.

DRUG INTERACTIONS: Angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors (for example, enalapril [Vasotec]), angiotensin receptor blockers (ARB) drugs (for example, valsartan [Diovan]), and certain diuretics (for example, spironolactone [Aldactone] and triamterene [Dyrenium]) increase potassium levels, causing high potassium levels in the blood when combined with potassium supplements. Potassium blood levels should be measured regularly in these patients.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 1/27/2015

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