The bile acid sequestrants are contraindicated in patients with known hypersensitivity to the drugs. Bile acid sequestrants are also contraindicated in those with complete biliary obstruction. These drugs are used cautiously in patients with a history of liver or kidney disease. Bile acid sequestrants are used cautiously during pregnancy (Pregnancy Category C) and lactation (decreased absorption of vitamins may affect the infant).
The bile acids sequestrants, particularly cholestyra-mine, can decrease the absorption of numerous drugs. For this reason, the bile acid sequestrants should be administered alone and other drugs given at least 1 hour before or 4 hours after administration of the bile acid sequestrants. There is an increased risk of bleeding when the bile acid sequestrants are administered with oral anticoagulants. The dosage of the anticoagulant is usually decreased. The bile acid sequestrants may bind with digoxin, thiazide diuretics, penicillin, propranolol, tetracyclines, folic acid, and the thyroid hormones, resulting in decreased effects of these drugs.
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