Welchol is an oral tablet made up of a bile acid sequestrant drug called colesevelam. Internationally, this Welchol is referred to as Cholestagel, and can be purchased as the brand choice in 625mg!
Welchol is used to lower high cholesterol levels and may be used alone, or with other medications such as atorvastatin, lovastatin, simvastatin, Crestor, Lipitor, Pravachol, Zocor, and others. Cholesterol is needed in the body for several reasons. One reason we need cholesterol is to form the structure of cell membranes and to make hormones such as oestrogen, testosterone, and adrenal hormones. Our body produces enough cholesterol and only very little is needed from your diet, however, a lot of people end up getting too much cholesterol in their diets which can lead to some unwanted complications. Having high cholesterol can lead to atherosclerosis, a condition that causes the arteries to become narrow or blocked which stops/slows the blood flow to vital organs, majorly on the brain and heart, leading to stroke.
Welchol (colesevelam) is effective at lowering cholesterol levels that are too high because of its ability to remove bile acid from the body, a substance created by the liver using cholesterol. When bile acid is removed, more must be made. The liver will begin to make more bile acid using more cholesterol from the body, therefore lowering the low density lipoprotein, otherwise known as “bad” cholesterol.
Your doctor will tell you before prescribing you Welchol (colesevelam) exactly how to take this medication. Follow his or her directions, they can usually be found on the prescription label if you forget.
Welchol should be taken with a meal and a full glass of water. Swallow the tablet whole and avoid chewing, crushing, or breaking the tablet. This medication is sometimes used with diet and exercise to help treat your condition; ensure you are following all steps of treatment. Keep up with all necessary medical tests needed during the duration of treatment, such as blood tests.
Store this medication at room temperature in a low risk area of heat and moisture.
Do not use Welchol (colesevelam)
Welchol should not be used by anyone who is allergic to colesevelam or if you have diabetic ketoacidosis, very high triglycerides, a history of bowel obstruction, or a history of pancreatitis caused by high triglycerides.
Do not give this medication to girls who have not got their menstrual cycle yet or to children under 12.
Dose adjustment or special precautions may be required
Inform your doctor, before starting treatment, if you have ever had troubles swallowing, a stomach, intestinal, or digestive disorder, surgery on your stomach or intestines, or a vitamin A, D, E or K deficiency.
This medication can cause an increase in triglycerides, a type of fat in your blood, which can increase your risk of coronary heart disease.
Tell your doctor if you are pregnant before starting treatment or if you become pregnant during treatment.
Common side effects of Welchol (colesevelam) may include:constipation; nausea; or upset stomach.
The above side effects should not alarm you.
Serious side effects of Welchol (colesevelam) may include:severe constipation; or severe stomach pain.
If you have any of the above side effects, contact your doctor right away.
Please note this is not a complete list of side effects. Not everyone experiences side effects; they are not guaranteed. If you do have side effects and they become unmanageable, consult your doctor about alternate medications.
Contact your doctor if you notice signs of…
pancreatitis: severe pain in your upper stomach spreading to your back, nausea and vomiting.
What is Welchol?
Welchol, or Cholestagel when purchased internationally, is a prescription medication containing 625mcg of colesevelam; a bile acid sequestrant drug. This medication is administered orally in tablet form and can be purchased as the brand-name medication at My Drug Center with a valid prescription.
What is Welchol used for?
Welchol is used for the treatment of high cholesterol; a condition linked to an elevated risk of cardiovascular diseases (such as coronary heart disease and stroke).
How does Welchol work?
Bile acid, which is used to help break down food, is created in the liver using cholesterol. Colesevelam (Welchol) is a bile acid sequestrant; therefore it is able to remove bile acid from the body, causing a shortage of bile acid. This will signal your body to produce more bile acid to compensate for the low levels. The liver will then collect cholesterol from the body to turn into bile acid, thus reducing the total amount of cholesterol present in the body.
How to take Welchol?
You should use this medication exactly the way it has been prescribed to you by your doctor. Directions can commonly be found on your prescription label if you forget. To use Welchol; swallow the tablet whole while ensuring not to chew, crush, or break the tablet. Welchol should be taken with a meal, unless otherwise directed by your doctor. Welchol is commonly taken as one daily dose of 6 tablets OR two daily doses of 3 tablets. If you are unsure how to use this medication properly; contact your doctor before starting treatment.
When does Welchol go generic?
There is already a generic for Welchol available, though unfortunately at this time; we do not carry the generic version at My Drug Center. However, we do sell the brand name Welchol for a lower cost than the common retail price of the generic Welchol in the United States, by more than half.
How much does Welchol cost without insurance?
Without insurance, in the United States, Welchol is a very costly medication. Even the average retail cost for the generic alternative is expensive, especially without insurance. Typically, in the United States, the average retail cost without insurance for generic Welchol is $320.00 more than My Drug Center’s cost for the brand name medication in the same strength and quantity. At My Drug Center, 180 Welchol tablets (625mg) will cost $259.00.
Who makes Welchol?
Welchol is manufactured by a global pharmaceutical company called Daiichi Sankyo.
What are the side effects of the drug Welchol?
The most commonly reported side effects of Welchol include constipation, nausea, or upset stomach. Side effects usually occur while your body adjusts to the new medication; these side effects should not alarm you. Not all possible side effects have been listed here.