Potassium Citrate shown to help alleviate and prevent gout “attacks”

Gout, the buildup of uric acid in your body, is a painful condition which affects an estimated 6 million Americans. Men over the age of 40 are at the biggest risk. This condition is caused when the body is unable to process purines or when you kidneys are unable to remove the uric acid from your blood stream.

In either case, high levels of uric acid can lead to the build up of uric crystals in your joints, typically in your big toe but other small joints can also be affected.

The symptoms of a gout attack are, from WebMD.com:

  • Warmth, pain, swelling, and extreme tenderness in a joint, usually a big toe joint. This symptom is called podagra. Symptoms sometimes start in a different joint, such as the ankle or knee.
  • Pain starts during the night and is so intense that even light pressure from a sheet is intolerable.
  • Rapid increase in discomfort, lasting for some hours of the night and then easing during the next few days.
  • As the gout attack subsides, the skin around the affected joint may peel and feel itchy.

Other symptoms may include:

  • Very red or purplish skin around the affected joint, which may appear to be infected.
  • Limited movement in the affected joint.

Potassium citrate, such as Effer-K®, helps control the symptoms of gout. This is because potassium is very alkaline, and when it is consumed it raises urine pH which may aid in releasing uric acid from the blood stream and prevent a gout attack.  Potassium citrate (in a liquid form) as opposed to potassium chloride (in a tablet or capsule form) is better than for the treatment of gout because it’s easier for the body to absorb.

If you have prolonged high levels of uric acid in your body, there is a 20% chance or higher that you body will start to form kidney stones. To prevent this, potassium citrate is used to raise the pH levels of urine up to 6.8 mg/dL(0.401 mmol/L) for men, and 6.0 mg/dL(0.354 mmol/L) for women. This level of pH in urine is referred to as alkaline urine.

Potassium citrate has also been found to help the body break down kidney stones that have already started forming and has been proven to help prevent future gout “attacks”.





An update on our young patient with liver disease suffering with hand cramps

A few days ago we blogged about a young patient with  chronic liver disease who was suffering from hand cramps.  The potassium he was given initially was so foul tasting that he couldn’t get it down. So, his physician prescribed Effer-K to increase his potassium and get rid of the hand cramps. See: http://www.efferk.com/blog/effer-k-to-alleviate-hand-cramping-in-a-young-patient-with-a-chronic-liver-disease/

Well – we heard from his physician today and this is what she reported:

“So far so good – no hand cramps since he started taking [Effer-K] – thanks again and he and his brother are playing games throwing the other awful tasting stuff down the toilet and watching it fizz!!!!!!”

We are still thinking of our young friend and impressed by his creative solution for other brands of potassium.

Potassium for the Purists

This week we received an inquiry about Effer-K from Nancy*, from Reno, Nevada who is a self-described purist.   Nancy had been diagnosed with low potassium in her teens.  She has other medical issues as well, which motivated her to become a “purist”.  (A person who tries to avoid contamination).

Specifically, Nancy was trying to avoid sodium benzoate, a food preservative that was present in the form of potassium she had been prescribed. Sodium benzoate, when combined with Vitamin C creates benzene,  a known carcinogen.   In her search to find a medication that adhered to her purist principles, Nancy discovered Effer-K.

Nancy’s concerns caused us to take a closer look at the ingredients in Effer-K.  None of the varieties of Effer-K contain sodium benzoate.  In addition, Effer-K 10 and 20 mEq Unflavored contain no artificial dyes or sweeteners, and the 10 and 20 mEq flavored varieties of Effer-K are sweetened with sucralose (not saccharin).  For more information about the exact ingredients in Effer- K, please see the package insert which is listed on our web site.

Nancy is looking forward to trying our Effer-K 20mEq Unflavored potassium citrate and has requested her free one-month trial of Effer-K.  And we are looking forward to hearing how it goes. So we are happy to accomodate you, Nancy, our newest fan of Effer-K, and all the other purists out there in need of potassium repletion.

* Not her real name.

Back to Top