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a potassium sparing diuretic used in treatment of edema and, usually in combination with hydrochlorothiazide, in the treatment of hypertension.
Miller-Keane Encyclopedia and Dictionary of Medicine, Nursing, and Allied Health, Seventh Edition. © 2003 by Saunders, an imprint of Elsevier, Inc. All rights reserved.


Dyrenium, Dytac (UK)

Pharmacologic class: Potassium-sparing diuretic

Therapeutic class: Diuretic

Pregnancy risk category B

FDA Box Warning

• Abnormal serum potassium elevation may occur, and is more likely in patients with renal impairment or diabetes and in elderly or severely ill patients. As uncorrected hyperkalemia may be fatal, monitor serum potassium levels frequently, especially when dosage is changed or patient has an illness that may influence renal function.


Depresses sodium resorption and potassium excretion in renal distal tubule


Capsules: 50 mg, 100 mg

Indications and dosages


Adults: 100 mg P.O. b.i.d. Do not exceed 300 mg/day.

Dosage adjustment

• Concurrent antihypertensive drug therapy

• Elderly patients

Off-label uses

• Diabetes insipidus


• Hypersensitivity to drug

• Hyperkalemia

• Severe hepatic disease

• Anuria, severe renal dysfunction (except nephrosis)

• Concurrent use of other potassium-sparing diuretics or potassium supplements


Use cautiously in:

• hepatic dysfunction, renal insufficiency, diabetes mellitus

• history of gout or renal calculi

• elderly or debilitated patients

• pregnant or breastfeeding patients

• children (safety not established).


• Give after meals.

• Know that drug may be used alone or as adjunct to thiazide or loop diuretics.

• Make sure patient stops taking potassium supplements before starting triamterene.

Adverse reactions

CNS: headache, fatigue, asthenia, dizziness

GI: nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, dry mouth

GU: azotemia, renal calculi

Hematologic: megaloblastic anemia, thrombocytopenia

Hepatic: jaundice

Metabolic: hyperglycemia, hyperkalemia, metabolic acidosis

Skin: rash, photosensitivity

Other: anaphylaxis


Drug-drug. Amantadine: increased amantadine blood level, greater risk of toxicity

Angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors, cyclosporine, indomethacin, potassium-sparing diuretics, potassium supplements, other potassium-containing

preparations: increased risk of hyperkalemia

Antihypertensives, nondepolarizing muscle relaxants, other diuretics, preanesthetic and anesthetic agents: potentiated effects of these drugs

Chlorpropamide: increased risk of hyponatremia

Cimetidine: increased bioavailability and decreased renal clearance of triamterene

Indomethacin: increased risk of acute renal failure

Lithium: decreased lithium clearance, greater risk of lithium toxicity

Drug-diagnostic tests. Alkali reserves, hemoglobin, platelets: decreased values

Blood urea nitrogen (BUN), creatinine, glucose, hepatic enzymes, potassium: increased levels

Liver function tests: increased values

Quinidine blood level: interference with fluorescent measurement

Drug-food. Salt substitutes containing potassium: increased risk of hyperkalemia

Drug-herbs. Gossypol, licorice: increased risk of hypokalemia

Patient monitoring

• Monitor BUN, creatinine, and electrolyte levels. Stay alert for hyperkalemia.

• Assess CBC with white cell differential.

Patient teaching

• Advise patient to take after meals to reduce nausea.

• Instruct patient to take last daily dose in early evening to avoid nocturia.

• Teach patient to recognize and report signs and symptoms of electrolyte imbalances.

• Tell patient to avoid salt substitutes. Advise him not to use herbs without consulting prescriber.

• As appropriate, review all other significant and life-threatening adverse reactions and interactions, especially those related to the drugs, tests, foods, and herbs mentioned above.

McGraw-Hill Nurse's Drug Handbook, 7th Ed. Copyright © 2013 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All rights reserved


A diuretic drug, C12H11N7, that allows potassium to be retained rather than eliminated in the kidney, often used in conjunction with hydrochlorothiazide.
The American Heritage® Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2007, 2004 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.


A K+-sparing diuretic that blocks resorption of sodium in the distal convoluted tubule of the kidney; it may be used alone, with a loop–eg, furosemide or thiazide diuretic–eg, hydrochlorothiazide, for managing HTN. See Diuretic, Potassium-sparing diuretic.
McGraw-Hill Concise Dictionary of Modern Medicine. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.


A potassium-sparing diuretic drug used to relieve the body of excess water and to treat mildly raised blood pressure. Triamterene is formulated with another diuretic drug under the brand names Diazide, Dytide, Frusene, Kalspare and Triam-Co.
Collins Dictionary of Medicine © Robert M. Youngson 2004, 2005