Colesevelam hydrochloride, a medication that is used to lower cholesterol and blood sugar levels, is often known by one of its brand names, Welchol®. Medical conditions like hyperlipidemia, which causes high levels of cholesterol and fat, and type 2 diabetes mellitus, which causes altered blood sugar levels, are the two main medical conditions that this drug is used to treat. The main factor that affects a Welchol® dosage a person may take is usually which condition they have. Other factors, like a person's age, can sometimes determine an appropriate dose of this medication, as well.
Adults taking this drug for hyperlipidemia usually take three 625 milligram (mg) tablets two times a day, for a total daily Welchol® dosage of 3.75 grams (g). Alternatively, six tablets can be taken just once a day for the same total dose. Doctors and the manufacturer of this medication recommend that this medication is taken just before a meal, and with liquid to help with absorption.
Similar dosing strategies are normally used for people that take this medication for type 2 diabetes mellitus. Adults commonly take a Welchol® dosage of three of the 625 mg tablets twice every day, or just once a day with six tablets instead. As with the hyperlipidemia treatment, this medication is usually taken with a full glass of water, either just before or during a meal.
Children under 17 may choose to use an alternate form of this drug instead of the tablets. This powder dissolves in water, and is available in amounts of 3.75 g and 1.875 g. A similar Welchol® dosage is used as when this medication is taken in tablet form. The 3.75 g packet is generally taken one time each day with water during a meal, or two 1.875 g packets can be taken throughout the day. Adults may take the oral suspension using these dosages as well, if they prefer this formulation to the tablets.
At times, people may take this medication with another type of drug called a statin, which also lowers cholesterol. Usually, the Welchol® dosage is not changed in any way, even when used alongside a statin. Doctors recommend that patients have their lipid levels several weeks after beginning to take this medication, however. Should it be necessary, the daily dosage of one or both of these medications could be changed. Additionally, many people combine their dosing with exercise and diets to get the best results from Welchol®.