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Drugs & Medications

sorbitol

GENERIC NAME(S): sorbitol

Uses

This medication is used as a laxative to treat occasional episodes of constipation.

Depending on the brand, this product may be taken by mouth and/or given rectally. Some products may only be given rectally. Be sure to check the label on your product for how to take your specific product.

How to use sorbitol

If you are taking this medication by mouth, follow your doctor's directions.

If you are using this medication rectally, properly mix an enema as directed by the product package or as directed by your doctor.

Do not use for longer than one week and do not take with additional laxatives or stool softeners unless directed by your doctor.

Laxatives should only be used temporarily until normal bowel habits return. Prolonged use can lead to laxative dependence.

Side Effects

Nausea, gas, diarrhea, stomach cramps or anal irritation may occur. If any of these effects persist or worsen, notify your doctor or pharmacist promptly.

If your doctor has directed you to use this medication, remember that he or she has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects. Many people using this medication do not have serious side effects.

Tell your doctor immediately if any of these serious side effects occur: rectal bleeding, vomiting, weakness, dizziness, persistent urge to empty the bowel.

Tell your doctor immediately if the following highly unlikely but very serious side effect occurs: black, tarry stools.

An allergic reaction to this drug is unlikely, but seek immediate medical attention if it occurs. Symptoms of an allergic reaction include: rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), dizziness, trouble breathing.

This is not a complete list of possible side effects. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.

In the US -

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

In Canada - Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to Health Canada at 1-866-234-2345.

Precautions

Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to it; or if you have any other allergies. This product may contain inactive ingredients, which can cause allergic reactions or other problems. Talk to your pharmacist for more details.

This medication should not be used if you have certain medical conditions. Before using this medicine, consult your doctor or pharmacist if you have: undiagnosed stomach pain, nausea/vomiting, rectal bleeding, a sudden change in bowel habits lasting over 2 weeks.

Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history.

Contact your doctor promptly if your constipation is not relieved after using this medication for one week.

Caution is advised when using this drug in the elderly because they may be more sensitive to its effects.

Caution is advised when using this drug in children because they may be more sensitive to its effects.

This medication is not recommended during pregnancy. Consult your doctor if you are pregnant.

It is not known whether this drug passes into breast milk. Consult your doctor before breast-feeding.

Interactions

If you are taking this medication under your doctor's direction, your doctor or pharmacist may already be aware of any possible drug interactions and may be monitoring you for them. Do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any medicine before checking with your doctor or pharmacist first.

Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist of all prescription and nonprescription products you may use, especially of: other laxatives, sodium polystyrene sulfonate, stool softeners.

This document does not contain all possible interactions. Therefore, before using this product, tell your doctor or pharmacist of all the products you use. Keep a list of all your medications with you, and share the list with your doctor and pharmacist.

Overdose

If overdose is suspected, contact a poison control center or emergency room immediately. US residents can call their local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222. Canada residents can call a provincial poison control center. Symptoms of overdose may include: stomach cramps, diarrhea.

Notes

Do not share this medication with others.

Consult your doctor for a plan that is right for you to prevent constipation. The plan may include drinking more fluids, increasing bulk or fiber in your diet, and regular exercise.

Missed Dose

If you miss a dose, use it as soon as you remember. If it is near the time of the next dose, skip the missed dose and resume your usual dosing schedule. Do not double the dose to catch up.

Storage

Store at room temperature away from light and moisture. Refer to storage information printed on the bottle for the exact temperature range. If you have any questions about storage, ask your pharmacist. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep all medicines away from children and pets.

Do not flush medications down the toilet or pour them into a drain unless instructed to do so. Properly discard this product when it is expired or no longer needed. Consult your pharmacist or local waste disposal company for more details about how to safely discard your product.

Information last revised March 2013. Copyright(c) 2013 First Databank, Inc.

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Selected from data included with permission and copyrighted by First Databank, Inc. This copyrighted material has been downloaded from a licensed data provider and is not for distribution, expect as may be authorized by the applicable terms of use.

CONDITIONS OF USE: The information in this database is intended to supplement, not substitute for, the expertise and judgment of healthcare professionals. The information is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, drug interactions or adverse effects, nor should it be construed to indicate that use of a particular drug is safe, appropriate or effective for you or anyone else. A healthcare professional should be consulted before taking any drug, changing any diet or commencing or discontinuing any course of treatment.

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