Argile de Chine, Argilla, Bolus Alba, Caolín, China Clay, Heavy Kaolin, Hydrated Aluminum Silicate, Kaolin Léger, Kaolin Lourd, Light Kaolin, Porcelain Clay, Silicate d’aluminium hydraté, Terre à Porcelaine, White Bole.<br/><br/>


Overview Information

Kaolin is a type of clay found in nature. It can also be made in a laboratory. People use it to make medicine.

Kaolin is used for mild-to-moderate diarrhea, severe diarrhea (dysentery), and cholera.

In combination products, kaolin is used to treat diarrhea and to relieve soreness and swelling inside the mouth caused by radiation treatments. Some of these combination products are used for treating ulcers and swelling (inflammation) in the large intestine (chronic ulcerative colitis).

Some people apply kaolin directly to the skin in a wet dressing (poultice) or as a dusting powder. It is used to dry or soften the skin.

Kaolin is also used in laboratory tests that help to diagnose disease.

In manufacturing, kaolin is used in tablet preparation and to filter materials and remove color.

Kaolin is also a food additive.

How does it work?

Kaolin acts as a protective coating for the mouth to decrease pain associated with radiation-induced damage.

When it is applied to the skin, kaolin acts as a drying agent.


Uses & Effectiveness?

Possibly Effective for

  • Soreness and swelling inside the mouth, caused by radiation treatments.

Insufficient Evidence for

  • Diarrhea. Kaolin has been used for years in combination with pectin (Kaopectate) for diarrhea. However in April 2003, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) found that there wasn’t enough scientific support for kaolin’s use in treating diarrhea. Since April 2004, drug manufacturers have not been allowed to put kaolin in diarrhea medicine. As a result, Kaopectate and similar products no longer contain kaolin.
  • Ulcers and inflammation in the colon (chronic ulcerative colitis).
  • Other conditions.
More evidence is needed to rate the effectiveness of kaolin for these uses.

Side Effects

Side Effects & Safety

Kaolin seems to be safe for most people. It can cause some side effects including constipation, particularly in children and the elderly.

Do not inhale kaolin. It can cause lung problems.

Special Precautions & Warnings:

Pregnancy and breast-feeding: Kaolin is considered POSSIBLY SAFE when taken by mouth in appropriate amounts during pregnancy.



Moderate Interaction

Be cautious with this combination

  • Clindamycin (Cleocin) interacts with KAOLIN

    Kaolin might decrease how quickly the body absorbs of clindamycin (Cleocin), an antibiotic. But it probably doesn't decrease the amount of clindamycin (Cleocin) that is absorbed.

  • Digoxin (Lanoxin) interacts with KAOLIN

    Kaolin might decrease the absorption and decrease the effectiveness of digoxin (Lanoxin), a heart medication. To avoid a potential interaction, separate digoxin (Lanoxin) and kaolin doses by at least two hours.

  • Quinidine interacts with KAOLIN

    Kaolin might decrease the absorption and decrease the effectiveness of quinidine (Quinidex), a heart medication. To avoid a potential interaction, separate quinidine (Quinidex) and kaolin doses by at least two hours.

  • Trimethoprim (Proloprim) interacts with KAOLIN

    Kaolin might decrease the absorption and decrease the effectiveness of trimethoprim (Proloprim), an antibiotic. To avoid a potential interaction, separate trimethoprim (Proloprim) and kaolin doses by at least two hours.



The following doses have been studied in scientific research:


  • For relief of sore mouth (oral mucositis) caused by radiation treatment: 15 mL sucralfate suspension with diphenhydramine syrup plus kaolin-pectin is used as a rinse four times a day.

View References


  • Alon, T., Bagchi, D., and Preuss, H. G. Supplementing with beta-hydroxy-beta-methylbutyrate (HMB) to build and maintain muscle mass: a review. Res.Commun.Mol.Pathol.Pharmacol. 2002;111(1-4):139-151. View abstract.
  • Crowe, M. J., O'Connor, D. M., and Lukins, J. E. The effects of beta-hydroxy-beta-methylbutyrate (HMB) and HMB/creatine supplementation on indices of health in highly trained athletes. Int J Sport Nutr.Exerc.Metab 2003;13(2):184-197. View abstract.
  • Flakoll, P., Sharp, R., Baier, S., Levenhagen, D., Carr, C., and Nissen, S. Effect of beta-hydroxy-beta-methylbutyrate, arginine, and lysine supplementation on strength, functionality, body composition, and protein metabolism in elderly women. Nutrition 2004;20(5):445-451. View abstract.
  • Gallagher, P. M., Carrithers, J. A., Godard, M. P., Schulze, K. E., and Trappe, S. W. Beta-hydroxy-beta-methylbutyrate ingestion, part II: effects on hematology, hepatic and renal function. Med.Sci.Sports Exerc. 2000;32(12):2116-2119. View abstract.
  • Hoffman, J. R., Cooper, J., Wendell, M., Im, J., and Kang, J. Effects of beta-hydroxy beta-methylbutyrate on power performance and indices of muscle damage and stress during high-intensity training. J Strength.Cond.Res 2004;18(4):747-752. View abstract.
  • Knitter, A. E., Panton, L., Rathmacher, J. A., Petersen, A., and Sharp, R. Effects of beta-hydroxy-beta-methylbutyrate on muscle damage after a prolonged run. J.Appl.Physiol 2000;89(4):1340-1344. View abstract.
  • Kreider, R. B., Ferreira, M., Wilson, M., and Almada, A. L. Effects of calcium beta-hydroxy-beta-methylbutyrate (HMB) supplementation during resistance-training on markers of catabolism, body composition and strength. Int.J.Sports Med. 1999;20(8):503-509. View abstract.
  • Marcora, S., Lemmey, A., and Maddison, P. Dietary treatment of rheumatoid cachexia with beta-hydroxy-beta-methylbutyrate, glutamine and arginine: a randomised controlled trial. Clin.Nutr. 2005;24(3):442-454. View abstract.
  • Albert KS, Ayres JW, DiSanto AR, et al. Influence of kaolin-pectin suspension on digoxin bioavailability. J Pharm Sc 1978;67:1582-6. View abstract.
  • Albert KS, et al. Pharmacokinetic evaluation of a drug interaction between kaolin-pectin and clindamycin. J Pharm Sci 1978 67:1579-82. View abstract.
  • Allen MD, Greenblatt DJ, Harmatz JS, Smith TW. Effect of magnesium-aluminum hydroxide and kaolin-pectin on absorption of digoxin from tablets and capsules. J Clin Pharmacol 1981;21:26-30. View abstract.
  • Altekruse EB, Chaudhary BA, Pearson MG, Morgan WK. Kaolin dust concentrations and pneumoconiosis at a kaolin mine. Thorax 1984;39:436-41. View abstract.
  • Babhair SA, Tariq M. Effect of magnesium trisilicate and kaolin-pectin on the bioavailability of trimethoprim. Res Commun Chem Pathol Pharmacol 1983;40:165-8. View abstract.
  • Barker G, Loftus L, Cuddy P, Barker B. The effects of sucralfate suspension and diphenhydramine syrup plus kaolin-pectin on radiotherapy-induced mucositis. Oral Surg Oral Med Oral Pathol 1991;71:288-93. View abstract.
  • Black RA, Hill DA. Over-the-counter medications in pregnancy. Am Fam Physician 2003;67:2517-24. View abstract.
  • Bucci AJ, Myre SA, Tan HS, Shenouda LS. In vitro interaction of quinidine with kaolin and pectin. J Pharm Sci 1981;70:999-1002. View abstract.
  • Carnel SB, Blakeslee DB, Oswald SG, Barnes M. Treatment of radiation- and chemotherapy-induced stomatitis. Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg 1990;102:326-30. View abstract.
  • Chaudhary BA, Kanes GJ, Pool WH. Pleural thickening in mild kaolinosis. South Med J 1997;90:1106-9. View abstract.
  • Federal Register April 17,2003. Anti-Diarrheal Products for over-the-counter human use; final monograph. Available at: http://www.fda.gov/OHRMS/DOCKETS/98fr/03-9380.pdf (Accessed 27 December 2004).
  • Levin JL, Frank AL, Williams MG, et al. Kaolinosis in a cotton mill worker. Am J Ind Med 1996;29:215-21. View abstract.
  • Rodin SM, Johnson BF. Pharmacokinetic interactions with digoxin. Clin Pharmacokinet 1988;15:227-44. View abstract.

More Resources for KAOLIN

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