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  • Generic Name: (spironolactone)
    Other Brands: N/A
  • Last Revised: 12/2014
    • What is this medication and its most common uses?

      Aldactone is a medicine used to treat high blood pressure, low blood potassium levels, and hyperaldosteronism (an increase in a hormone called aldosterone that can cause an increase in blood pressure). Aldactone is also used to treat fluid retention in people with congestive heart failure (a condition in which the heart cannot pump enough blood throughout the body), cirrhosis (scarring of the liver), or nephrotic syndrome (a kidney disorder in which too much protein is excreted into the urine). Aldactone may also be used to increase survival and reduce the need for hospitalization in people with heart failure.

    • What should I know when beginning and continuing on this medication?

      How does this medication work?

      Aldactone is a water pill and works by eliminating extra fluid and sodium (salt) from your body. Aldactone also helps to reduce the excessive loss of potassium from your body. This helps to lower your blood pressure and fluid retention.

      What are the beneficial effects of this medication and when should I begin to have results?

      What: By lowering your blood pressure, Aldactone may lower your risk of a stroke or a heart attack. Aldactone has also been shown to reduce the chance of death or hospitalization due to heart failure.

      When: Everyone responds differently to treatment, so try to be patient and follow your healthcare provider's directions. Though you may not feel an improvement or change in the way you feel, it is very important to keep taking your medicine as prescribed to keep your condition under control.

      How do I know it is working?

      You may notice a decrease in your blood pressure and fluid retention after you start taking Aldactone. Check your blood pressure regularly. Your healthcare provider will also check your blood pressure at every visit. Following an appropriate diet and exercise plan will also affect your blood pressure results.

    • What are the possible side effects of this medication?

      The following is not a full list of side effects. Side effects cannot be anticipated. If any develop or change in intensity, tell your healthcare provider as soon as possible. Only your healthcare provider can determine if it is safe for you to continue taking this medication.

      More common side effects may include: diarrhea, inability to achieve or maintain an erection, breast pain, hives, dizziness.

      Less common side effects may include:

      Changes in electrolytes (chemicals that are important for the cells in your body to function, such as sodium and potassium) with symptoms such as dry mouth, thirst, weakness, tiredness, drowsiness, restlessness, muscle pains or cramps, muscle tiredness, low or no urine output, fast heartbeat, or nausea and vomiting.

      Aldactone may also cause breast enlargement in men.

    • Who should not take this medication?

      Do not take Aldactone if you are allergic to it or any of its ingredients.

      Do not take Aldactone if you have high blood potassium levels or Addison's disease (adrenal gland failure).

      Do not take Aldactone if you have certain kidney problems or are unable to produce urine.

      Do not take Aldactone if you are taking eplerenone.

    • What should I tell my healthcare provider before I take the first dose of this medication?

      Tell your healthcare provider about all prescription, over-the-counter, and herbal medications you are taking before beginning treatment with Aldactone. Also, talk to your healthcare provider about your complete medical history, especially if you have heart, liver, or kidney problems; or if you are pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or are breastfeeding.

    • What is the usual dosage?

      The information below is based on the dosage guidelines your healthcare provider uses. Depending on your condition and medical history, your healthcare provider may prescribe a different regimen. Do not change the dosage or stop taking your medication without your healthcare provider's approval.

      High Blood Pressure

      Adults: The recommended starting dose is 50 to 100 milligrams (mg) once a day or divided doses, as directed by your healthcare provider. Your healthcare provider may adjust your dose as needed, until the desired effect is achieved.

      Low Blood Potassium Levels

      Adults: The usual dose is 25 to 100 mg a day.


      Adults: Your healthcare provider will prescribe the appropriate dose for you based on your condition.

      Fluid Retention

      Adults: Your healthcare provider will prescribe the appropriate dose for you based on your condition, and may adjust your dose as needed, until the desired effect is achieved.

      Increase Survival in Heart Failure Patients

      Adults: The recommended starting dose is 25 mg once a day. Your healthcare provider may adjust your dose as needed, until the desired effect is achieved.

    • How should I take this medication?

      Take Aldactone exactly as prescribed by your healthcare provider. Do not change your dose or stop taking Aldactone without first talking to your healthcare provider.

    • What should I avoid while taking this medication?

      Do not drive a car, operate heavy machinery, or engage in other dangerous activities until you know how Aldactone affects you.

      Do not take potassium supplements, use salt substitutes that contain potassium, or eat a potassium-enriched diet while you are taking Aldactone.

      Do not take Aldactone if you have conditions associated with high blood potassium levels.

    • What are the possible food and drug interactions associated with this medication?

      If Aldactone is taken with certain other drugs, the effects of either could be increased, decreased, or altered. It is especially important to check with your healthcare provider before combining Aldactone with the following: alcohol, barbiturates (such as phenobarbital), blood pressure medications (such as lisinopril or losartan), certain water pills (such as eplerenone), cholestyramine, corticosteroids (such as prednisone), digoxin, lithium, narcotic painkillers (such as hydrocodone or oxycodone), or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) (such as ibuprofen or indomethacin).

    • May I receive this medication if I am pregnant or breastfeeding?

      The effects of Aldactone during pregnancy are unknown. Aldactone may be found in your breast milk if you take it while breastfeeding. Do not breastfeed while you are taking Aldactone. Tell your healthcare provider immediately if you are pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or are breastfeeding.

    • What should I do if I miss a dose of this medication?

      If you miss a dose of Aldactone, take it as soon as you remember. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the one you missed and return to your regular dosing schedule. Do not take two doses at once.

    • How should I store this medication?

      Store at room temperature.

    • Who should I contact in case of emergency or overdose?
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      In the event of a medical emergency call your doctor or 9-1-1 immediately. In the event of overdose, call your doctor or poison control for further instructions.
      National Poison Control#: Call 1-800-222-1222

      This PDR+ drug information has been developed by the Physicians’ Desk Reference Network (PDRN), a source of medication information trusted by doctors for over 65 years.

      This monograph summarizes the most important information about your medication and does not cover all the information you may need. If you have any questions or concerns or want to learn more about your medication, ask your healthcare provider; he/she will be able to provide answers to your questions. This medication should only be used by the patient for whom it was prescribed and should not be shared with other people.
    • Additional patient resources.
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