Spironolactone

Posted by denisern @denisern, Aug 11 9:45am

I was started on spironolactone 1 & 1/2 weeks ago added to metropolol 75mg and faxiga for CHF since starting I am much more tired & having a terrible time exercising much. I feel like I had adjusted to other meds until we added this…the cardiologist said this was the combination she wanted me on for the heart failure but I feel so rotten don't know if I can do it.

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I’m on Spiro, be careful of your Potassium level. Spiro is a Potassium holder, meaning it reduces the amount of Potassium your body would normally eliminate. The danger here is as the body holds onto it, the level in your body rises. Potassium is needed in the body but as it builds up inside you, it can cause lethal amounts. I’ve had to rush to be retested and given a medication to help my body to eliminate the overload. On your blood tests, 7 is in lethal territory, my highest results were 6.8 one time and 6.7 another. As long as your on Spiro, you’ll have to check everything you put in your mouth to see how much Potassium is in it.

I’ve been on it for over 5 years and it has other side affects you may not like. It’s a diuretic, which makes you go to the bathroom more, at night too, which causes you to lose salt in your urine. I also experience drowsiness about a hour or so after I take it and fall asleep. This messes up my sleep cycle at night. Oh yeah, it also reduces your level of Testosterone, the male sex hormone in both men and women, something doctors have a tendency to overlook. It can cause other problems because of reduced levels of Testosterone, something my daughter didn’t even know and she’s a nurse giving it to patients. It helps to lower your blood pressure all right but be careful of it’s many side affects. @becky1024

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@becky1024

I’m on Spiro, be careful of your Potassium level. Spiro is a Potassium holder, meaning it reduces the amount of Potassium your body would normally eliminate. The danger here is as the body holds onto it, the level in your body rises. Potassium is needed in the body but as it builds up inside you, it can cause lethal amounts. I’ve had to rush to be retested and given a medication to help my body to eliminate the overload. On your blood tests, 7 is in lethal territory, my highest results were 6.8 one time and 6.7 another. As long as your on Spiro, you’ll have to check everything you put in your mouth to see how much Potassium is in it.

I’ve been on it for over 5 years and it has other side affects you may not like. It’s a diuretic, which makes you go to the bathroom more, at night too, which causes you to lose salt in your urine. I also experience drowsiness about a hour or so after I take it and fall asleep. This messes up my sleep cycle at night. Oh yeah, it also reduces your level of Testosterone, the male sex hormone in both men and women, something doctors have a tendency to overlook. It can cause other problems because of reduced levels of Testosterone, something my daughter didn’t even know and she’s a nurse giving it to patients. It helps to lower your blood pressure all right but be careful of it’s many side affects. @becky1024

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Thank, yes I've researched it extensively I am having a blood test at the end of the month to test levels. I have low b/p anyway I'm trying to stick this out if it will help my heart function but would like a life! What kind of symptoms happen with high potassium?

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@denisern

Thank, yes I've researched it extensively I am having a blood test at the end of the month to test levels. I have low b/p anyway I'm trying to stick this out if it will help my heart function but would like a life! What kind of symptoms happen with high potassium?

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Palpitations is the biggest issue. If left unchecked, you heart will most likely go into A-Fib(heart chambers are out of sync). If it’s bad enough, a heart attack will occur. On your blood test results the level is 3 to 5 roughly, in between is desired, my last one in May was 4.1. So 5 is high, 5 to 6 is higher but not good. Above 6 to 6.5 is in the danger zone, and you should be warned by your pcp it need attention immediately. 6.5 to 6.8 is in the critical zone, and you should be sent to the hospital for treatment. At 6.9. and 7, you might be taken to the morgue if your heart hasn’t gone back into normal rhythm. I was at 6.7. & 6.8, and a number of my doctors kept calling me to get me to go to the ER immediately

If you must take Spiro, like I do, you’ll learn what things are dangerous. A simple misjudgment on my part shot my potassium up to the 6.8 level. That’s when I learned a valuable lesson, Don’t just thing it’s not to high a potassium food, most food labels say per serving. My mistake was the amount was high but there were 3 1/2 serving in the whole can of soup I consumed. So instead of only 400 it turned into 1400 times two days in a row made it 2800, ouch.

Off hand some other symptoms may be abdominal pain, chest pain, nausea and vomiting and a few more. So your doctor or technician should give you a daily amount you’re allowed to eat. That includes anything you put in your mouth that has potassium in to and that’s almost everything. Good luck

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Thank you! That is scary! The cardiologist wants me on the drug cocktail that is suppose to be best for my heart failure & spiro was the last drug added after failing Entresto and topping Metropolol at 75mg because I couldn't tolerate more. They are following with frequent labs.
Sounds as if you had very scary & life threatening reaction! Why do you say you " must" take Spirolactone? Take care!

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@denisern

Thank you! That is scary! The cardiologist wants me on the drug cocktail that is suppose to be best for my heart failure & spiro was the last drug added after failing Entresto and topping Metropolol at 75mg because I couldn't tolerate more. They are following with frequent labs.
Sounds as if you had very scary & life threatening reaction! Why do you say you " must" take Spirolactone? Take care!

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First, is it possible to convince your doc to try a lower dose first, or to reduce the Metoprolol at lessen the effects of combining the meds?
If you find you absolutely cannot tolerate the Spironolactone, there are a few other medications, but I don't necessarily think they have less side effects. In addition, on most insurance, you must try and fail spiro first.

Good luck – I hope your body adjusts soon. This combination was difficult for my Mom when she was diagnosed with CHF.
Sue

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@denisern

Thank you! That is scary! The cardiologist wants me on the drug cocktail that is suppose to be best for my heart failure & spiro was the last drug added after failing Entresto and topping Metropolol at 75mg because I couldn't tolerate more. They are following with frequent labs.
Sounds as if you had very scary & life threatening reaction! Why do you say you " must" take Spirolactone? Take care!

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Because of a rare birth defect in the heart 1 in a million and a birth problem with my pituitary gland plus other rare health issues. So my body has trouble trying to regulate my potassium level. Potassium helps to keep the heart running correctly but in my case, I either runs high or low. Many athletes know the effect of low potassium, severe muscle cramping in the calf. Now my Endocrinologist(hormone doctor) has me on 50mgs in the morning and 50mgs in the evening to help up my potassium level. The big problem falls on my shoulders, reading labels for potassium content on everything I put in my mouth.

That mistake about serving size almost killed me because the birth defect I have pushed me into tachycardia. So every day I walk a fine line between not enough salt in my blood from peeing to much or getting a potassium overload that will trigger the same problem, tachycardia which in my case will kill me because of my birth defect. So that’s why I have to take Spiro, my Doctor and I quickly learned 200mgs daily was way to much. So I have to adjust my intake from 50mgs daily, to 75 or 100mgs. It’s a vicious cycle, nothing like waking up in the morning with severe leg cramps in one or both calves before you even open your eyes because you peed out to much Potassium going to the bathroom in the middle of the night to many times. Yeah, loads of fun living in this “Freak of Nature” body of mine.

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I am so sorry, that has to be very difficult because you always have to be managing your intake & output. My chf is due to a chemo drug I had for breast cancer, it has totally changed my life! So I can't imagine what it's like for you. Take care & be well.

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@sueinmn

First, is it possible to convince your doc to try a lower dose first, or to reduce the Metoprolol at lessen the effects of combining the meds?
If you find you absolutely cannot tolerate the Spironolactone, there are a few other medications, but I don't necessarily think they have less side effects. In addition, on most insurance, you must try and fail spiro first.

Good luck – I hope your body adjusts soon. This combination was difficult for my Mom when she was diagnosed with CHF.
Sue

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Hi Sue, I have been working with the heart failure center to get me on the max dose I can tolerate for meds. Did your mom adjust? I now have a UTI not sure if related went to an NP for that & let the heart center know.

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@denisern

Hi Sue, I have been working with the heart failure center to get me on the max dose I can tolerate for meds. Did your mom adjust? I now have a UTI not sure if related went to an NP for that & let the heart center know.

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Eventually her body did adjust. She was also on warfarin after several strokes, requiring a weekly blood draw. So we monitored her potassium weekly as well. It was fine unless she stole forbidden foods off her friends' plates at Assisted Living (staff were excellent at managing dietary restrictions – residents were not quite so compliant)
Sue

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