Labetalol is used to treat high blood pressure.
Three kidney transplant patients developed hyperkalemia (high blood potassium levels), a potentially dangerous condition, following intravenous administration of labetalol.1 Additional research is needed to determine whether taking oral labetalol together with potassium supplements might also lead to elevated blood levels of potassium. However, some other beta-blockers (called “nonselective” beta-blockers) are known to decrease the uptake of potassium from the blood into the cells,2 leading to hyperkalemia.3 People taking beta-blockers should therefore avoid taking potassium supplements, or eating large quantities of fruit (e.g., bananas), unless directed to do so by their doctor.
As pleurisy root and other plants in the Aesclepius genus contain cardiac glycosides, it is best to avoid use of pleurisy root with heart medications such as beta-blockers.4
1. Arthur S, Greenberg A. Hyperkalemia associated with intravenous labetalol therapy for acute hypertension in renal transplant recipients. Clin Nephrol 1990;33:269–71.
2. Rosa RM, Silva P, Young JB, et al. Adrenergic modulation of extrarenal potassium disposal. N Engl J Med 1980;302:431–4.
3. Lundborg P. The effect of adrenergic blockade on potassium concentrations in different conditions. Acta Med Scand Suppl 1983;672:121–6 [review].
4. Newall CA, Anderson LA, Phillipson JD. Herbal Medicines: A Guide for Health-Care Professionals. London: Pharmaceutical Press, 1996, 213–4.
Last Review: 02-05-2013
Copyright © 2013 Aisle7. All rights reserved. Aisle7.com
Please read the disclaimer about the limitations of the information provided here. Do NOT rely solely on the information in this article. The Aisle7 knowledgebase does not contain every possible interaction.
The information presented in Aisle7 is for informational purposes only. It is based on scientific studies (human, animal, or in vitro), clinical experience, or traditional usage as cited in each article. The results reported may not necessarily occur in all individuals. For many of the conditions discussed, treatment with prescription or over-the-counter medication is also available. Consult your doctor, practitioner, and/or pharmacist for any health problem and before using any supplements or before making any changes in prescribed medications. Information expires June 2014.
Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.