Calcium Acetate (Oral)

Calcium Acetate is only available with a doctor's prescription and comes in tablet, capsule, and oral solution forms.


Calcium is an essential mineral that's required for many bodily functions, especially bone maintenance and formation. Also, calcium may bind to other minerals like phosphate and help remove them from the body.

Calcium Acetate helps to manage blood phosphate levels and stops them from rising too high in patients with kidney failure. Calcium Acetate can also be taken for other purposes not discussed in this medication guide.

You shouldn't use this medication if your blood calcium levels are high. You shouldn't use Calcium Acetate if you've got allergies to it.

Ask your healthcare professional if it's safe to use Calcium Acetate if you suffer from other medical problems, especially:

  • If your kidney problem worsens
  • If you also use digoxin (Lanoxin, Digitalis)

Inform your healthcare professional if you want to get pregnant or are pregnant already.

The FDA categorizes medicines depending on safety of use during pregnancy. There are five categories used to categorize the potential risks to the fetus when a medicine is used during pregnancy. They are X, D, C, B, and A.

Calcium Acetate is in category C pregnancy. No research has been carried out on animals as well as pregnant women. This medication should only be given to pregnant women if clearly needed.

Tell your physician if you're breastfeeding or intend to breastfeed. It's not known whether this medication gets into breast milk. Since many drugs can get into breast milk and due the possibility of adverse reactions in breastfed babies while women use Calcium Acetate, you should choose between stopping breastfeeding and stopping the use of Calcium Acetate. You and your physician will make a decision if the medication's benefits outweigh the risks.

Appropriate studies done so far haven't shown problems specific to older adults that would limit Calcium Acetate's usefulness in seniors. However, aged patients are often likely to have heart, kidney, or liver problems, which might need caution and dose adjustments for those receiving Calcium Acetate.

Appropriate studies haven't been carried out on the relationship between age and Calcium Acetate effects in children. The medication's efficacy and safety haven't been established as well.

Don't give Calcium Acetate to children without medical advice.

Conditions treated

  • Low blood calcium levels
  • Renal osteodystrophy and hyperphosphatemia

Type of medicine

  • Calcium supplement

Side effects

Stomach upsets can occur. If this problem worsens or persists, report it to your doctor/pharmacist immediately.

If your physician has ordered you to take Calcium Acetate, just know that he/she has determined that the medication's benefits outweigh the potential for side effects. The majority of people who use Calcium Acetate don't experience serious side effects.

Tell your healthcare professional promptly if any of the following serious but unlikely side effects happen: loss of appetite, stomach/abdominal pain, constipation, nausea, vomiting, dry mouth, confusion, and increased thirst or urination.

This drug rarely causes a very serious allergy. However, seek medical assistance promptly if you get any signs/symptoms of a serious allergy, such as rash, troubled breathing, severe dizziness, and itching or swelling (particularly of the throat/tongue/face).

This list of possible Calcium Acetate side effects isn't all-inclusive. If you experience other effects not mentioned above, make sure to call your doctor/pharmacist immediately.

US residents should call their doctor for advice about Calcium Acetate side effects. They may also report the side effects to the FDA on their website or at 1-800-FDA-1088.

People living in Canada can also call their doctor for advice about Calcium Acetate side effects. They can notify Health Canada about their side effects at 1-866-234-2345.


Take this drug only as ordered by your physician. Don't take the drug more often than recommended, don't take more or less of it, and don't use it for much longer than your physician ordered.

  • It's best to take Calcium Acetate with meals.
  • Measure the oral solution with a special measuring spoon, medicine cup, or oral syringe. The standard teaspoon in your house may not contain the right quantity of liquid.
  • Carefully follow any diet plan your physician may recommend.
  • If you're using other drugs, take them an hour before or three hours after you use the oral solution form of Calcium Acetate. If you need help with deciding the right times to use other medications, ask your pharmacist/doctor.
  • The dose of Calcium Acetate will vary between people. Follow the label's directions or your doctor's directions.

The amount of Calcium Acetate you use depends on its strength. Additionally, the time permitted between doses, the frequency of taking your doses daily, and the duration within which you take Calcium Acetate depend on the condition for which you're taking the drug.

Oral solution dosage

Adults should start with 10 ml of the medication with each meal. Your doctor will adjust your dose depending on the levels of phosphorus in your blood.

As for children, their use and dose will need to be determined by a doctor.

Tablet dosage:

  • Adults should take 2 tablets with meals, thrice a day. If necessary, your doctor can increase your dose.
  • As for kids, your doctor will determine their use and dose.
  • Your doctor can occasionally adjust your dose to ensure you get optimum results.
  • Take Calcium Acetate with every meal, unless your physician tells you otherwise.
  • You may need a food journal to track the amount of calcium you're receiving in your diet.
  • Talk to your child's doctor about the use of Calcium Acetate by kids. Special care might be needed.
  • Take any dose you've missed as soon as possible. But if it's nearly time for another dose, don't take the missed one and return to your normal dosing program. Don't take double doses to offset missed doses.

If Calcium Acetate is given by a healthcare giver in a medical environment, it's unlikely that there'll be an overdose. However, if you think there is an overdose, seek emergency medical treatment.


While you shouldn't use certain medications together, sometimes two different medications can be taken together regardless of any interaction that might occur. In such cases, your doctor can give you other precautions, or change your dose. When you're taking Calcium Acetate, it's especially vital that you let your healthcare giver know if you're using one of the drugs listed below. These drug interactions have been chosen depending on their possible impact and aren't necessarily comprehensive.

Using Calcium Acetate with any of the medicines below is normally not recommended, but your doctor may ask you to use them in some situations. If Calcium Acetate is prescribed together with any of the following medicines, your doctor can adjust the dose or your frequency of taking both or one of the medicines.

  • Ketoconazole
  • Digoxin
  • Eltrombopag
  • Sodium Polystyrene Sulfonate

Using Calcium Acetate with any of these drugs can increase the risk of some side effects, but taking both drugs could be the right treatment for you. Your doctor can adjust your dose or frequency of taking both or one of the medications if he or she prescribes Calcium with any of these medicines.

  • Ciprofloxacin
  • Chlorothiazide
  • Dasatinib
  • Chlortetracycline
  • Enoxacin
  • Delafloxacin
  • Lomefloxacin
  • Dolutegravir
  • Demeclocycline
  • Grepafloxacin
  • Doxycycline
  • Levofloxacin
  • Methacycline
  • Levothyroxine
  • Minocycline
  • Sodium Phosphate
  • Monobasic Potassium Phosphate
  • Dibasic Potassium Phosphate
  • Norfloxacin
  • Pefloxacin
  • Oxytetracycline
  • Monobasic Sodium Phosphate
  • Dibasic Sodium Phosphate
  • Rolitetracycline
  • Sparfloxacin
  • Tetracycline
  • Ticlopidine
  • Strontium Ranelate
  • Zalcitabine

This isn't a complete list of interactions and Calcium Acetate can interact with other drugs. Report all medicines you use to your doctor. This includes over-the-counter, prescription, herbal medicines, and vitamin supplements. Before you start any new medicine, notify your doctor.


It's really important that your physician assesses your progress regularly, especially in the first several months of Calcium Acetate treatment as your dose may need to be changed. This is to ensure that Calcium Acetate is working well and doesn't bring undesirable effects. You may require blood tests to rule out undesirable effects.

Sometimes you may have excess calcium in your blood (hypercalcemia) and not show any warning signs. To check the level of phosphorous and calcium in your blood, you may need regular blood tests while being treated with Calcium Acetate. Keep all your doctor's appointments.

If you don't have too much calcium in your blood, you may have nausea and vomiting, as well as lose your appetite and suffer constipation. If the issue is very serious, you may get confused or feel extremely excited. If you believe you have severe hypercalcemia, stop using Calcium Acetate and call your physician at once.

  • Don't take other products containing calcium such as antacids and dietary supplements. Your doctor may alter the amount of foods with calcium you eat. Taking excess calcium while you're taking Calcium Acetate can lead to hypercalcemia.
  • Calcium Acetate can interfere with your body's ability to absorb other drugs you take orally.
  • Don't take an antibiotic like Ciprofloxacin (Cipro), Levofloxacin (Levaquin), or moxifloxacin (Avelox) within two hours before or six hours after taking Calcium Acetate.
  • Don't take an antibiotic like Minocycline (Solodyn), Tetracycline, or Doxycycline (Oracea, Doryx) within an hour before you use Calcium Acetate.
  • Don't take Levothyroxine (Levothroid, Synthroid) within four hours before or four hours after taking Calcium Acetate.
  • While taking Calcium Acetate, you might need a special diet. Ask your doctor. In addition, ask how much fluid you should drink each day.


  • Keep Calcium Acetate at room temperate in a sealed container.
  • Keep Calcium Acetate away from direct light, heat, and moisture.
  • Keep Calcium Acetate from freezing.
  • Keep this medication away from kids.
  • Don't keep outdated Calcium Acetate medication or medication you no longer need.
  • Ask your healthcare giver about how to dispose of any medication you don't use.
  • Dispose of any unused oral solution after 24 months.


Calcium Acetate comes in the form of a capsule, tablet, and oral solution and is typically taken thrice a day orally with meals. Don't chew, break, or divide capsules. Swallow the capsules whole.

Common Calcium Acetate side effects include loss of appetite, constipation, nausea, and vomiting.

Calcium Acetate is found in three different forms under the brand names Eliphos, PhosLo, and Phoslyra. It may also be taken for other purposes not discussed in this article.

The recommended first Calcium Acetate dose for adults on a dialysis is two capsules or tablets with each meal. Your doctor may increase the dosage gradually to lower phosphate levels in the blood without causing hypercalcemia. The majority of patients require three to four capsules or tablets with each meal.

Calcium Acetate can interact with other drugs, e.g. prescription and nonprescription (over-the-counter) drugs, herbal products, and vitamins. Report to your healthcare providers all the medications you're currently using and any medication you stop or start using.

The presence of certain medical conditions can affect Calcium Acetate use. Be sure to tell your physician about any medical problems you have, especially:

Hypercalcemia (excess calcium in blood): people with this condition shouldn't use Calcium Acetate.

If you've got high calcium levels in your blood, don't use Calcium Acetate.

Last Reviewed:
December 24, 2017
Last Updated:
April 17, 2018
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