Before you begin using a medication, be sure to inform your doctor of any medical conditions or allergies you may have, any medications you are taking, whether you are pregnant or breast-feeding, and any other significant facts about your health. These factors may affect how you should use this medication.
Breast enlargement in men: Men may develop breast enlargement with the use of spironolactone. If this occurs, tell your doctor. In the great majority of cases, breast enlargement disappears once the medication is stopped.
Drowsiness and dizziness: Spironolactone may cause drowsiness or dizziness, affecting your ability to drive or operate machinery.
Avoid these and other hazardous tasks until you have determined how this medication affects you. This medication may also cause dizziness or lightheadedness when moving from a lying or sitting to an upright position.
Alcohol can add to the drowsiness caused by this medication.
Potassium: This medication may cause high potassium levels if potassium intake is too high. Do not take potassium supplements, follow a diet rich in potassium, or use salt substitutes containing potassium while taking spironolactone. People with reduced kidney function, seniors, and people with diabetes are more at risk of developing high potassium levels.
Fluid and electrolyte balance: Spironolactone may cause the levels of electrolytes such as potassium, sodium, and chloride in the blood to change while taking this medication. If you experience symptoms of fluid and electrolyte imbalance such as muscle pains or cramps; dry mouth; numb hands, feet, or lips; or racing heartbeat, contact your doctor as soon as possible. Your doctor will do blood tests regularly to monitor the levels of these electrolytes in your blood while you are taking this medication.
Liver function: Small changes to electrolytes and fluid in the body can cause large changes to liver function. If you have liver problems, discuss with your doctor how this medication may affect your medical condition, how your medical condition may affect the dosing and effectiveness of this medication, and whether any special monitoring is needed. Your doctor may want to test your liver function regularly with blood tests while you are taking this medication.
Pregnancy: Spironolactone crosses the placenta and may affect the developing baby if taken by a woman when she is pregnant. This medication should not be used during pregnancy unless the benefits outweigh the risks. If you become pregnant while taking this medication talk to your doctor about the potential benefits and risks of taking this medication during pregnancy.
This medication passes into breast milk. If you are a breast-feeding mother and are taking spironolactone, it may affect your baby. Talk to your doctor about whether you should continue breast-feeding.