Cholestyramine (CSM) is an FDA-approved medication used to lower elevated levels of cholesterol.
Cholestyramine is a quaternary ammonium anion exchange resin with a strong affinity for bile salts.
Cholestyramine is also used to treat severe itching caused by liver disease and also be used to treat diarrhea.
Cholestyramine removes bile acids from the body by forming insoluble complexes with bile acids in the intestine, which are then excreted in the feces. When bile acids are excreted, plasma cholesterol is converted to bile acid to normalize bile acid levels. This conversion of cholesterol into bile acids lowers plasma cholesterol concentrations.