Triamterene - oral
Triamterene - oral
This medication can increase your potassium levels, especially if you have kidney disease or diabetes, or are severely ill. Potassium levels must be done while you are taking this medication. If not treated, very high potassium levels can sometimes be fatal. If you notice any of the following serious side effects, tell your doctor right away: muscle weakness, slow/irregular heartbeat.
Triamterene is a "water pill" (diuretic) that works in your kidneys to increase the amount of urine you make. This helps your body get rid of extra water. This medication is used to decrease swelling (edema) caused by conditions such as cancer, congestive heart failure, liver disease, and kidney disease. This effect can help your kidneys work better and lessen symptoms such as trouble breathing and swelling in your ankles, feet, hands, or belly.
This section contains uses of this drug that are not listed in the approved professional labeling for the drug but that may be prescribed by your health care professional. Use this drug for a condition that is listed in this section only if it has been so prescribed by your health care professional.
This drug may also be used for high blood pressure or low potassium levels.
Take this medication by mouth as directed by your doctor, usually once or twice a day after a meal. If you take this drug too close to bedtime, you may need to wake up to urinate. It is best to take this medication at least 4 hours before your bedtime.
To reduce your risk of side effects, your doctor may direct you to start this medication at a low dose and gradually increase your dose. Follow your doctor's instructions carefully.
The dosage is based on your medical condition and response to treatment.
Use this medication regularly to get the most benefit from it. To help you remember, take it at the same time(s) each day.
Do not increase your dose or use this drug more often or for longer than prescribed. Your condition will not improve any faster, and your risk of side effects will increase.
Do not stop taking this medication without consulting your doctor. Some conditions may become worse when this drug is suddenly stopped. Your dose may need to be gradually decreased.
Tell your doctor if you do not get better or if you get worse.
See also Warning section.
Dizziness, lightheadedness, tiredness, headache, stomach upset, or diarrhea may occur. If any of these effects last or get worse, tell your doctor or pharmacist promptly.
To reduce the risk of dizziness and lightheadedness, get up slowly when rising from a sitting or lying position.
Triamterene can cause a loss of too much body water (dehydration) and salt/minerals. Tell your doctor right away if you have any symptoms of dehydration or mineral loss, such as confusion, unusual dry mouth/thirst, fast/irregular heartbeat, severe dizziness/lightheadedness, or seizures.
Tell your doctor right away if you have any serious side effects, including:
A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, get medical help right away if you notice any symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, including:
In the US -
See also Warning section.
Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history, especially of:
This drug may make you dizzy. Alcohol or marijuana (cannabis) can make you more dizzy. Do not drive, use machinery, or do anything that needs alertness until you can do it safely. Limit alcoholic beverages. Talk to your doctor if you are using marijuana (cannabis).
If you have diabetes, triamterene may affect your blood sugar. Check your blood sugar regularly as directed and share the results with your doctor. Tell your doctor right away if you have symptoms of high blood sugar such as increased thirst/urination. Your doctor may need to adjust your diabetes medication, exercise program, or diet.
Severe sweating, diarrhea, or vomiting can increase the risk for a serious loss of body water (dehydration). Report prolonged diarrhea or vomiting to your doctor. To prevent dehydration, drink plenty of fluids unless your doctor directs you otherwise.
This medication may increase your potassium levels. Before using potassium supplements or salt substitutes that contain potassium, consult your doctor or pharmacist.
This medication may make you more sensitive to the sun. Limit your time in the sun. Avoid tanning booths and sunlamps. Use sunscreen and wear protective clothing when outdoors. Tell your doctor right away if you get sunburned or have skin blisters/redness.
Before having surgery, tell your doctor or dentist about all the products you use (including prescription drugs, nonprescription drugs, and herbal products).
Older adults may be more sensitive to the side effects of this drug, especially high potassium blood levels.
During pregnancy, this medication should be used only when clearly needed. It may harm an unborn baby. Discuss the risks and benefits with your doctor.
This drug may pass into breast milk. Consult your doctor before breast-feeding.
See also Precautions section.
Drug interactions may change how your medications work or increase your risk for serious side effects. This document does not contain all possible drug interactions. Keep a list of all the products you use (including prescription/nonprescription drugs and herbal products) and share it with your doctor and pharmacist. Do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any medicines without your doctor's approval.
Some products that may interact with this drug include:
Some products have ingredients that could raise your blood pressure or worsen your swelling. Tell your pharmacist what products you are using, and ask how to use them safely (especially cough-and-cold products, diet aids, or NSAIDs such as ibuprofen/naproxen).
This medication may interfere with certain lab tests, possibly causing false test results. Make sure lab personnel and all your doctors know you use this drug.
If someone has overdosed and has serious symptoms such as passing out or trouble breathing, call 911. Otherwise, call a poison control center right away. US residents can call their local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222. Canada residents can call a provincial poison control center. Symptoms of overdose may include: severe dizziness, muscle weakness, slow/irregular heartbeat.
Do not share this medication with others.
Lab and/or medical tests (such as potassium levels, kidney and liver function tests) should be done while you are taking this medication. Keep all medical and lab appointments.
If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you remember. If it is near the time of the next dose, skip the missed dose. Take your next dose at the regular time. Do not double the dose to catch up.
Store at room temperature away from light and moisture. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep all medications away from children and pets.
Do not flush medications down the toilet or pour them into a drain unless instructed to do so. Properly discard this product when it is expired or no longer needed. Consult your pharmacist or local waste disposal company.
Information last revised October 2018.
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