• Triamterene and chlortalidone will make you pass urine more often, so your doctor or pharmacist will usually advise you to take your dose in the morning so as not to disturb your sleep.
  • This medicine may colour your urine blue. This is completely harmless and should be no cause for concern.
  • The main side-effects are stomach upset, gout, skin rashes, light-headedness and a dry mouth.

About triamterene and chlortalidone

Type of medicine Diuretic (water tablet)
Used for Treating oedema (water retention) and hypertension (high blood pressure)
Also called Kalspare®
Available as Tablets (orange coloured)

This medicine is a combination medicine containing two ingredients, triamterene and chlortalidone. Both of these ingredients are diuretics (water tablets), which work in different ways.

  • Triamterene is known as a potassium-sparing diuretic because, unlike some other diuretics, it does not cause your body to lose potassium.
  • Chlortalidone is a thiazide diuretic, which prevents the build up of fluid by increasing the amount of urine produced by the kidneys.

It is used to treat oedema (water retention), often caused by heart failure. It can also be used to treat hypertension (high blood pressure).

Before taking triamterene and chlortalidone

Before taking triamterene and chlortalidone make sure your doctor or pharmacist knows:

  • If you are pregnant or breast-feeding.
  • If you have liver or kidney problems.
  • if you suffer from Addison's disease, diabetes, gout (pain and stiffness in the joints), or systemic lupus erythematosus (an inflammatory condition also called lupus or SLE).
  • If you have been told you have high or low levels of potassium, sodium or calcium in your blood.
  • If you are taking other medicines, including those available to buy without a prescription, herbal or complementary medicines.
  • If you have ever had an allergic reaction to this or any other medicine.

How to take triamterene and chlortalidone

  • Before beginning treatment, read the manufacturer's printed information leaflet.
  • Take your medication exactly as directed by your doctor.
  • Take your dose with or soon after eating a meal or snack.
  • Try to take triamterene and chlortalidone at the same time each day to avoid missing any doses.
  • This medicine will make you pass urine more often, so your doctor or pharmacist will usually advise you to take your dose in the morning so as not to disturb your sleep.
  • If you forget to take a dose, take it as soon as you remember. If you do not remember until the following day, skip the missed dose. Do not take two doses together to make up for a forgotten dose.

Getting the most from your treatment

  • Keep your regular doctor's appointment so your progress can be monitored.
  • This medicine may colour your urine blue. This is completely harmless and should be no cause for concern.
  • It is important to follow any dietary advice that you have been given by your doctor. If you are overweight, your doctor may want you to follow a weight reducing diet.
  • You should try not to eat too much potassium whilst taking this medicine. Salt substitutes contain potassium, as well as foods such as bananas, potatoes and spinach. Your doctor or pharmacist will be able to advise you on your diet.
  • Avoid drinking too much alcohol. Alcohol can cause a drop in blood pressure and may lead to fainting.
  • If you have diabetes this medicine may affect your blood sugar levels. Test your urine or blood regularly and report any extreme changes to your doctor.
  • Many patients with high blood pressure do not feel unwell, but left untreated high blood pressure can harm the heart and arteries and damage blood vessels resulting in a heart attack, stroke, heart failure or kidney failure. Because of this it is important to take triamterene and chlortalidone as your doctor has instructed, even if you feel quite well.
  • Diuretics help you to lose water. On occasions you may lose too much and become dehydrated, leaving you feeling thirsty and your skin looking and feeling dry. Let your doctor know if this happens.
  • If you are having an operation or any dental treatment, tell the person carrying out the treatment which medicines you are taking.
  • If you buy any medicines, check with a pharmacist that they are safe to take with triamterene and chlortalidone.

Can triamterene and chlortalidone cause problems?

Along with their useful effects, most medicines can cause unwanted side-effects although not everyone experiences them. These usually improve as your body adjusts to the new medicine, but speak with your doctor or pharmacist if any of the following side-effects continue or become troublesome.

Common side-effects - these affect less than 1 in 10 people who take this medicine What can I do if I experience this
Dry mouth, increased thirst Chewing sugar-free gum or sweets may help
Faintness or dizziness when getting up from a lying or sitting position Getting up slowly should help
Increased sensitivity to sunlight Use a sunscreen that protects against UVA light and has a sun protection factor (SPF) of at least 15, especially in strong sunlight or until you know how your skin reacts. Do not use sunbeds
Stomach upset Eat little and often. Stick to simple or bland foods - avoid rich or spicy foods
Skin rashes, dry skin Drink 6-8 glasses of water each day. Use a moisturiser on dry areas of skin

Important: If you experience confusion, difficulty concentrating, irritability, muscle cramps and unusual tiredness or weakness, speak with your doctor immediately.

If you experience any other symptoms which you think may be due to this medicine, speak with your doctor.

How to store triamterene and chlortalidone

  • Keep all medicines out of the reach and sight of children.
  • Store in a cool, dry place, away from direct heat and light.