potassium iodide (generic name)

It is used to treat certain thyroid conditions
(puh TAS ee uhm AHY uh dahyd)
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What is this medicine?

POTASSIUM IODIDE, KI (puh TAS ee uhm AHY uh dahyd) is used to treat certain thyroid conditions. It is also used to prevent thyroid damage after a nuclear radiation emergency.

What should I tell my health care provider before I take this medicine?

They need to know if you have any of these conditions:
  • Addison's disease
  • dermatitis herpetiformis
  • heart disease
  • high levels of potassium in the blood
  • hypocomplementemic vasculitis
  • kidney disease
  • myotonia congenita
  • thyroid disease
  • tuberculosis
  • an unusual or allergic reaction to potassium iodide, iodine, other medicines, foods, dyes, or preservatives
  • pregnant or trying to get pregnant
  • breast-feeding

How should I use this medicine?

Take this medicine by mouth. Follow the directions on the package or prescription label. Mix the dose in one glass of water, fruit juice, or milk. Take with food or milk. Use a specially marked spoon or container to measure each dose. Ask your pharmacist if you do not have one. Household spoons are not accurate. Take your medicine at regular intervals. Do not take your medicine more often than directed.

Talk to your pediatrician regarding the use of this medicine in children. Special care may be needed.

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 may interact with this medicine?

Do not take this medicine with any of the following medications:
  • other medicine for the thyroid
  • propylthiouracil, PTU

This medicine may also interact with the following medications:

  • certain diuretics like spironolactone, triamterene
  • certain medicines for high blood pressure or heart failure like enalapril
  • lithium
  • potassium supplements

What should I watch for while using this medicine?

Visit your doctor for regular checks ups. You may need blood work done while you are taking this medicine.

What side effects may I notice from receiving this medicine?

Side effects that you should report to your doctor or health care professional as soon as possible:
  • allergic reactions like skin rash, itching or hives, swelling of the face, lips, or tongue
  • breathing problems
  • burning in mouth, throat
  • chest pain
  • fast, irregular heartbeat
  • fever with joint pain
  • lump or swelling on the neck
  • metallic taste
  • pain, tingling, numbness in the hands or feet
  • unusual aches, pains
  • unusual bleeding, bruising
  • unusually weak or tired

Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (report to your doctor or health care professional if they continue or are bothersome):

  • diarrhea
  • headache
  • nausea, vomiting
  • upset stomach

Where should I keep my medicine?

Keep out of the reach of children.

Store at room temperature between 15 and 30 degrees C (59 and 86 degrees F). Protect from light. At lower than room temperature, crystals may form in this medicine. If crystals form, let the bottle warm to room temperature and shake to dissolve. Throw this medicine away if it turns brownish yellow. Throw away any unused medicine after the expiration date.

Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.

Last Updated: May 23, 2011
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