The below information on Welchol has been taken from official FDA sources, but we cannot guarantee it's accuracy. Please use this site for educational purposes only. This site does not replace a proper discussion with your doctor.

    Brand Name:Welchol
    Generic:Colesevelam Hydrochloride
This drug was approved by the FDA in one form or another on:
2000-05-26 ,
This drug is made in one form or another by the following companies:
GelTex Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
This drug is available in the following forms:
Tablets and Capsules
View the actual FDA approved label for this drug at the following links:

About Welchol

Welchol is used alone or with another drug to lower high levels of low-density lipoprotein (LDL) in the blood when response to diet and non-drug therapy is inadequate. Diet and exercise are very important factors to help control cholesterol.

Side Effects of Welchol

  • Indigestion
  • Constipation
  • Gas

Who Should Not Take Welchol

Do not take Welchol if you have a blockage of your intestinal tract

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Recent Forum Posts on Welchol


Ive experinced weight gain, severe fatique, muscle twinges, constipation, but not as much pain inside deep muscle pain as lipitor and crestor gave me. (felt like the flu) After taking Crestor I coud not even lift my left arm up or behind me, got off it and everything is ok with my arm and shoulder. Lower stomach pain that will go right around to my lower back, but that comes and goes. Anyone else with any side affects that cant be explained.


I've been taking Welchol sence 01/15/09. I also take Lipitor for yrs. I was always tired on the Lipitor and with Welcol seen worse. I am experience short term memory loss. Anyone else having these problems?

Welchol tolerance

I've had a fibroid tumor removed, a colon resection, a bowel resection, and five incisional hernia repairs; I have a hiatal hernia as well as diverticulosis and occasionally diverticulitis. I was put on Welchol by my doctor two weeks ago, six a day. I had constipation during the second week, but it has now disappeared and I'm having no adverse effects from Welchol.
I have been on a low-fat diet for about 17 years, beginning when I was diagnosed with coronary artery disease at the age of 45. When I was taken off hormone therapy my cholesterol level, which had been stable at 169, increased to 232 within a month. My family has a very serious inclination toward heart disease, so I feel lucky to have been diagnosed so early and to have lived so long, and expect to live much longer.
I have been on four other cholesterol drugs, none of which my body would tolerate. So I'm putting a lot of hope into Welchol, since it doesn't go through the body as most of the others do, but instead heads straight for the digestive tract. I have to wait and see, of course, and have scheduled a complete blood study to be done in another six weeks.
As I have serious arthritis, spinal stenosis and several destroyed disks in both my back and neck, exercise is a painful and therefore not effective way for me to attempt to lower my cholesterol. I surely hope Welchol can help me!

No Subject

I was just prescribed Welchol, But I am afraid to take it. I just wonder if it will be recalled in a couple of years like everything else seems to.

B12 deficiency

My hsband was diagnosed with low B-12 level after visitng a neurologist for memory problems. Could the welchol, which he has been on for 4 months, caused his stomach to not absorb B-12, which in turn causes dementia. Has anyone heard of this or experienced this??

Welchol Diarrhea

Hi, my name is Tina. 2 1/2 years ago I had a gastric bypass and still have chronic diarrhea. I just had every test run and nothing wrong with my upper and lower GI, and nothing wrong with my colonoscopy. I also do NOT have high cholesterol. Like another from this message board, my doctor prescribed Welchol for my diarrhea. From all the research I've done so far, this drug, Welchol, is to control cholesterol. Please let me know if any of you took the Welchol for diarrhea and how it worked out for you. Alot of posts I read on this site seems to repeat the fact that is causes fatique. Well, I already have cardiomyopathy (weak heart) and fatique is already a major problem in my life. I'd appreciate any info anyone can offer.



I have had a real battle with my cholestrol. I have tried the different common medications on the market but had terrible side effects as described in the other comments. I was put on Welchol and just taking the 6 pills a day was hard enough but I also had pain, unable to sleep, so I quit taking it also.
I am one of those people that can't tolerate these medications.

I am looking for a natural alternative for I have other health issues and heart problems does run in my family. I read where fish oil or niacin could help. How about Garlic?

It sounds like a lot of people are not able to take Welchol along with the other popular medications that are out there.

Taking other mrdications

I am taking Levoxyl for my thyroid and Folic Acid ti lower my Homocystine level as well as Vitamin e and vitamin c I winder if my headeches are cause by a side reaction of the WelChol, Please answer.

Weight loss

Did anyone weight change after taking Welchol?

Weight Loss???

I just started the drug and it has helped my diarreah a lot. I had my gall bladder removed four years ago and yikes....I like the control I have so far with the bathroom part. I was wondering if I will lose a ton of weight since this drug grabs the fat before it can go on my thighs? Is is related to alli the weight loss drug that also grabs fat and moves it out through the intestines. Anyone have any testimonies of weight loss? I don't have muscle pain or sleep problems yet...I take iron, multiple vitamin, calcium. I think it must help with weight loss as it does grab a lot of fat before it can be utilized.My doc said exercise and take a general vitamin and that it would help with weight loss.

Welchol administration

I have just started Welchol after having severed muscle pains and weakness with Zocor and Mevacor. Although muscle weakness is listed as a side effect, my physician states it is much less.
My concern and questions are as follows. Although I can find nothing in the product literature, both the pharmacist and my physician tell me not to take my other medications at the same time I take the Welchol. As I take a medication for arthritis that needs to be taken with food and the Welchol does also, this is creating a scheduling dilemma for me. As both are taken twice a day that adds to the problem.
Has anyone else been told this and if so, what was the reasoning?
Thank you.


While on this for 2 months I am experiencing heaviness in my chest
I can hardly breath. When I forget to take it I do not get the
heaviness. I also cough a lot I have had problems with cholesteral
medicines and my Cholesteral is very high and so far it has come down
from 341 to 284 but I can stand the pressure. My doctor sent me to
a heart doctor I am going for a Eco and stress test. I think its
the Welchol I am extremly tired lately but I do have Thyroid trouble.


I am very sorry to tell your readers that I did not write the comment about Welchol causing muscle weakness. I have had an email from Vivian stating that she is thinking of stopping the medication due to my comment. Actually WelChol is the only cholesterol lowering medication which has been effective for me. Lipitor make the muscle weakness and when I took Pravochol I got a rash. I would like to reverse the error if possible as the statement was not made by me. Thanks Vivian for catching the error. Thanks - Peggy Hartsfield.

Muscle weakness

Muscle weakness seems to have worsened. Wondering if WelChol is the culprit.


I've taken many different statins. All have side effects which I'm unable to tolorate. My doctor has just prescribed Welchol. I've just read a comment by Peggy Hartsfield that Welchol may be the cause of her muscle weakness worsening. Muscle weakness and aching along with Fatigue Syndrome are the main reasons I've stopped taking all the statins. It seems there is no medication to lower my cholestrol that I can tolorate. I've just heard about Aceon an Ace Inhibitor. Anyone have experience with it?

Jerry Sitner

Hair Loss

I am at a loss, literally. Has anyone heard/experienced hair loss in conjunction with Welchol? I have so many health problems and am on so many drugs that it seems that no one is sure what exactly is making my hair fall out. This seems a little fishy to me.

Gas pain

I was on Welchol for 2 months and was extremely gassy and was in the bathroom 8 - 10 times a day with the runs. I told me Doctor and he said that you have to build a tolerance to the drug. I went off of it for three weeks and I went back to normal. I decided to go back on it and after the first dose I was back in the bathroom again. I have been back on the drug for three weeks and I am going off and finding research on natural ways. I don't understand the side effects of constipation because it has been the absolute opposite for me.

new user of welchol

only started using welchol yesterday 3/15/04 LDL 150,even after using Niacin ,garlic pills working out with a trainer 3xaweek.hope it works.Iam very positive


I have been taking all of the pills for Cholesteral, I am not over weight at all, my Dr. put me on WelChol 6 Tablets a day, 3 in the morning, and 3 at bedtime with food. They are 625 MG a pill. I have pain in my upper left chest and also from my knees down to my feet, this drug is my only hope other wise I'm on my own the Dr. said. Eat healthy foods and Excersie everyday, watch what you eat. I'm going to continue taking this drug tell I run out and go back to the Dr. and get blood work done, if my cholesteral goes down I will continue taking it, if not I'm going off of it and doing it the natural healthy way, I do beleave these pills are not good for all of us. I feel in my heart eat healthy foods and excersie is the best way to go. Good Luck Everyone!!!! John Wald


I have some form of colitis which is causing me constant diarrhea for the past month. My doctor needs to perform more tests on me which are going to take some time before I he will know what exactly I have and how to treat it. In the meantime he has prescribed me welchol to help with my diarrhea. It was worked pretty well so far. It makes my stomach feel bloated and slightly hurts sometimes but its better than the alternative of running to the bathroom every 30 minutes. I have much less diarrhea say 4 times a day instead of 15+, which is making my life much more livable. I have only been on it a few days so I am unaware of any side effects that might pop up. But it seems like what everyone is complaining about as side effects are exactly the effects I am looking for.

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