Category Archives : patient story

Effer-K gives people a new outlook on taking their prescription potassium supplement

A few weeks ago I received a sample request from Joe, a customer who was unhappy with the prescription potassium supplement he was taking. This is not the first time I have been contacted by an individual who disliked their prescription potassium supplement and, even though each story is unique, these stories seem to have a few things in common. Many people tell me they have taken the tablet form of potassium as well as the liquid and powder forms. The complaints are all the same – the large tablet is too hard to swallow and the liquid and powder forms taste awful. While being hard to ingest seems to be a good enough reason to search for an alternative to these forms of potassium, people tell me it is not the worst part of their experience. They often tell me if they manage to get the large tablet or foul tasting liquid/powder to go down, it causes various intestinal troubles.

Like many others who have contacted me, Joe’s prescription potassium supplement caused him a great deal of suffering and he had little hope left for finding a potassium supplement that he could bear to ingest and his stomach could tolerate. This is what Joe had to say when he first contacted me:

“I am having a tough time finding a potassium that doesn’t ‘eat my guts’ & make me start with excuses to myself to NOT take it – I have tried all the pills & powders so I’m hoping this (Effer-K) ‘is the ticket’.”

I have found that people who have the chance to try Effer-K have a new outlook on taking their prescription potassium supplement. Therefore words cannot describe how thrilled I am to offer people like Joe the opportunity to try a free sample of Effer-K. With the help of Joe’s physician and pharmacist, he was able to try a sample. And after trying Effer-K, he was eager to tell me about his experience. This is what Joe told me:

“I was taking Klor-Con for a few years at about 7 meq (a 20 meq cut into thirds) every other day & kept my ‘readings’ at 3.5 to 3.8 with no seeming effect on my innards.  Last May I was in the hospital for A-Fib & the doctors felt my Potassium was low & put me on 20 meq Klor-Con per day, a 600% increase.  I started to have ‘problems’ & it took me a month to ‘figure out’ what was the problem (as they had started several other Rx).  I started to modulate the intake of Potassium with some improvement & tried 10 meq(uncut) & then powdered w/ water with NOT much improvement.  I was having sharp pains up to about a 7 almost all the time in my lower tract & got ‘referred’ to Effer-K, after almost 6 months of agony.  In the first week with Effer-K the pain went down to about a 2 and by 10 days was gone. 

I have been taking the Effer-K plain (20 meq) cut in half interspersed alternately with the Citrus (25 meq) also cut in half for almost a month now with vastly improved BMs & NO pain & my labs are keeping the doctors happy.  I love this stuff & only regret that my Medicare doesn’t cover the cost, but it’s worth paying the $14 – $25 for the intestinal relief.”

After receiving Joe’s testimonial with his only regret being the cost of Effer-K, I realized in my excitement to help him get a free sample, I had forgotten to tell him about the various discount prescription drug websites that can help people save money on the cost of prescription drugs that are not covered by insurance. I was able to find Effer-K for between $9 – 19 (qty 30) on

Joe has finally found a prescription potassium supplement that is easy to swallow, does not taste awful, and does not upset his stomach. And, after I sent the coupon to him, he is happy with the cost as well.

A father determined to help his daughter get Effer-K

I am always happy to help our customers when they experience difficulty getting Effer-K at their pharmacy.  Now that we have built a solid distribution channel – it doesn’t happen often, but occasionally these situations do arise.  Not long ago I was contacted by the father of a customer who was having this problem. I wanted to share this story because I was touched by this father’s determination to help his daughter.

Marie is an Effer-K customer who was born with an intestinal birth defect which requires her to take potassium daily. Marie has taken Effer-K with great success but her pharmacist recently informed her he could no longer get Effer-K from the pharmacy’s supplier. This was devastating news for Marie because she had taken other products in the past and they had caused her severe pain. Effer-K was the only product she was able to take without pain. But what choice did she have? She could no longer get Effer-K, so she was forced to take another product. She feared she was doomed to spend the rest of her life in pain.

Lucky for Marie, her father, Nick, was not willing to accept that his daughter would spend the rest of her life suffering because she could not get Effer-K. Nick did a little research and found my phone number. Nick called Marie with the good news. He had found the manufacturer of Effer-K! While Marie was appreciative of her father’s help, she did not think anything would come of his discovery. She had a picture in her head of a huge “Pharma-Giant bureaucracy” and she did not think Nick would actually be able to talk to a human being. Nick, however, was not deterred by this.

Nick decided to call the number he had found and find out why the pharmacy could no longer get Effer-K from the supplier. When Nick reached me, he explained that the pharmacy told him that Effer-K was on backorder.  I assured him that this was definitely not the case and that I could ship an order that day if needed. After talking to Nick, I contacted the supplier for the pharmacy and they agreed to place an order.

It was that easy. I requested an order, and the supplier placed an order. To me, I was just doing my job, but to Nick who has watched Marie suffer her whole life until she found Effer-K, this was a blessing. Hearing Nick’s excitement upon finding out his daughter would be able to get the medicine she needed made me realize what a considerable impact Effer-K has on the quality of life for so many people. I am grateful for the opportunity to help people like Nick and Marie.

Please read the testimonials submitted by Nick and Marie.

If you need help getting Effer-K at your pharmacy please don’t hesitate to call or email me.

Effer-K does not contain lactose

Many of the questions we get about Effer-K® are ones we are used to answering. But, occasionally, we get an inquiry that challenges us to learn even more about our product.

A few weeks ago we received a call from a pediatric nurse practitioner who wanted to prescribe Effer-K® to a child who needed potassium supplementation. She was excited about the Unflavored Effer-K® because it could be effervesced (and go undetected) in the child’s favorite drink. This child, however, was severely lactose intolerant, so the nurse practitioner was wondering if Effer-K® contained lactose?

After a bit of research we were able to confirm that Effer-K® does not contain lactose and is safe for patients who are lactose intolerant. What we were surprised to learn is that lactose can be found in many non-dairy products such as some types of bread, lunch meat and cereal. According to the Cleveland Clinic, “lactose is also present in about 20 percent of prescription medications, and about 6 percent of over-the-counter medications.” Fortunately, though, not in Effer-K®.

Effer-K 25 mEq (Unflavored and Orange) now stocked in all Cardinal Health distribution centers in the U.S.!

We recently received an email from a patient (Bob) who needs to take large does of potassium (60-80 mEq daily).  To make his potassium supplementation easier and more pleasant, Bob opts to take a few doses of the Unflavored Effer-K 25 mEq each day. The unflavored tablet can be dissolved in any beverage, so every drink provides an opportunity for medicating.

Effer-K 25 mEq is available in a variety of flavors to be dissolved in water.  All flavored varieties of Effer-K are sugar free. Effer-K 25 mEq is also available in an Unflavored form which can be dissolved in a patient’s beverage of choice.   Unflavored Effer-K is sugar free and contains no artificial dyes or flavors.

Unfortunately, Bob was told by his pharmacy that they could not get the 25 mEq because the manufacturer was out of stock.  WHAAAATTTT??? We have plenty of it sitting here on our shelves.   Effer-K 25 mEq is in less demand than our more common 10 and 20 mEq strengths – but it is often preferred for patients who are taking very large doses of potassium daily.  Because of the lower demand, in the past some of the wholesale pharmacy distribution centers had not placed orders for it in the past.

Fortunately the fantastic national buyer at Cardinal Health acknowledged the need to make Effer-K 25 mEq Unflavored and Orange available at all Cardinal pharmacies and bought a case of both for each of her distribution centers throughout the United States.  And the great news for Bob is that he can now go to his local Walgreens and pick up his 25 mEq Unflavored Effer-K whenever he needs it.

Thanks a lot, Cardinal! And thank you, Bob, for bringing this issue to our attention.

Effer-K does NOT contain sugar

We recently received a message from a patient who was leery about trying flavored Effer-K due to (unnecessary) concerns about the sugar content in flavored varieties of Effer-K and how the sugar might decrease potassium levels.  While this concern is unfounded, as there is NO SUGAR in any variety of Effer-K, we were still interested in why sugar could counteract the effect of potassium repletion.

Here’s what the patient said.

I am using 20 mEq unflavored. I would like to try a flavor but  the glucose/insulin triggers K+ shift

My response… huh?? Here’s what our medical director explained.

Based on his comment, I surmise that this patient is under the impression that the flavored tablets have sugar in them, and is concerned that this would result in decreased serum potassium levels. That is: when you ingest sugar, this triggers an insulin surge in the body. Insulin causes glucose to be taken up by tissues in the body. One component of insulin’s mechanism of action is to activate a sodium/potassium pump in the cell membrane, the net effect of which is to shift potassium into the cells.

This is actually a first line treatment in patients with hyperkalemia: to give insulin + glucose.

Since Effer-K contains no glucose, then I would think the whole concern/issue is moot – a non-issue.

Who knew? Another day, another benefit discovered in repleting potassium with Effer-K.

Effer-K enabled patient with congestive heart failure to take a diuretic to control edema and avoid painful spasms and severe muscle cramping.

We received a fantastic e-mail from a patient who says that Effer-K changed his life.

Hello – I am just writing to say thank you so much. [Effer-K] changed my life. I have congestive heart Failure and was unable to control my Edema due to muscle cramping but Effer-K changed all that!

My doctor had a sample given to him and I was in serious trouble and the pills just did not work. I was taking 2 -20mg horse pills with a diuretic each day but could not maintain the regiment due to muscle spasms. I believe this product enabled me to take a daily diuretic and saved me from a heart attack. I was literally on the brink of calling 911 – I could not breathe due to fluid buildup and the Effer-K enabled me to take the diuretic without painful spasms and severe muscle cramping.

Anyone taking the huge pills would prefer Effer-K and it is more readily absorbed by the body. I can now take 1 -20 mEq Effer-K where 2-20mg pills did not even work. My cardiologist never heard of it. I am lucky my primary care doctor had this given to him.

No BS, it changed my life and I am sure there are lots more folks that could benefit from this.

– Bill

Thanks, Bill for the feedback. We are so happy to hear that Effer-K has made a difference in your life.

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