SPIRONOLACTONE (Aldactone®) is a diuretic. Diuretics increase the amount of urine passed, which causes the body to lose water and salt. Spironolactone helps to treat high blood pressure (hypertension). It is not a cure. It also reduces the swelling and water retention caused by various medical conditions, such as heart, liver, or kidney disease. Spironolactone is a potassium-sparing diuretic. It does not make your body lose potassium, it can help patients who have a low blood potassium. Generic spironolactone tablets are available.
What should I tell my health care provider before I take this medicine?
They need to know if you have any of these conditions: Diabetes, heart disease, high blood level of potassium, liver disease, low blood level of sodium, kidney disease, mestrual irregularity, an unusual or allergic reaction to spironolactone, other medicines, foods, dyes, or preservatives, pregnant or trying to get pregnant, breast-feeding
How should I take this medicine?
Take spironolactone tablets by mouth. Follow the directions on the prescription label. Swallow the tablets with a drink of water. If spironolactone upsets your stomach, take it with food or milk. Take your doses at regular intervals. Do not take your medicine more often than directed. Remember that you will need to pass urine frequently after taking spironolactone. Do not take your doses at a time of day that will cause you problems. Do not take at bedtime.
What if I miss a dose?
If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose, take only that dose. Do not take double or extra doses.
What drug(s) may interact with spironolactone?
antiinflammatory drugs (NSAIDs, such as ibuprofen), corticosteroids, cyclosporine, digoxin, heparin, lithium, medicines for high blood pressure, monoamine oxidase inhibitors (Azilect®, Eldepryl®, Emsam®, Marplan®, Nardil®, Parnate®, Zelapar™), potassium salts, water pills
Tell your prescriber or health care professional about all other medicines you are taking, including non-prescription medicines, nutritional supplements, or herbal products. Also tell your prescriber or health care professional if you are a frequent user of drinks with caffeine or alcohol, if you smoke, or if you use illegal drugs. These may affect the way your medicine works. Check with your health care professional before stopping or starting any of your medicines.
What side effects may I notice from taking spironolactone?
Side effects that you should report to your prescriber or health care professional as soon as possible: Confusion, cough, hoarseness, dry mouth, increased thirst, enlarged breasts in males, fast or irregular heartbeat, palpitations, chest pain, fever, chills, lower back or side pain, nervousness, numbness or tingling in hands, feet, or lips, pain or difficulty passing urine, shortness of breath; difficult breathing, skin rash, itching, unusual bleeding, unusual tiredness or weakness, weakness or heaviness of legs
Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (report to your prescriber or health care professional if they continue or are bothersome): Breast tenderness in females, deepening of voice in females, diarrhea, dizziness, drowsiness, headache, increased hair growth in females, irregular menstrual periods, nausea, vomiting, sexual difficulty, inability to have an erection, stomach pain or cramps, indigestion
What should I watch for while taking spironolactone?
Visit your prescriber or health care professional for regular checks on your progress. Check your blood pressure regularly. Ask your prescriber or health care professional what your blood pressure should be, and when you should contact him or her. You must not get dehydrated, ask your prescriber or health care professional how much fluid you need to drink a day. Do not stop taking spironolactone except on your prescriber's advice.
Watch your diet while you are taking spironolactone. Ask your prescriber or health care professional about both potassium and sodium intake. Spironolactone can make your body retain potassium and you may have too much. Elderly patients, the severely ill, diabetics, or patients with kidney problems are more likely to suffer from the effects of too much potassium. Avoid salt-substitutes and nutritional supplements which contain potassium, unless your prescriber or health care professional tells you otherwise. Too much potassium can be very harmful. You may need to avoid foods that are high in potassium such as bananas, coconuts, dates, figs, prunes, apricots, peaches, grapefruit juice, tomato juice, and orange juice.
If you are going to have surgery, tell your prescriber or health care professional that you are taking spironolactone.
Where can I keep my medicine?
Keep out of the reach of children in a container that small children cannot open.
Store at room temperature below 30 degrees C (86 degrees F). Throw away any unused medicine after the expiration date.