Bulk-forming laxatives - oral
Metamucil (with sugar) 3.4 gram oral powder packet
This medication is used to treat constipation. It increases the bulk in your stool, an effect that helps to cause movement of the intestines. It also works by increasing the amount of water in the stool, making the stool softer and easier to pass.
Psyllium, one type of bulk-forming laxative, has also been used along with a proper diet to treat high cholesterol.
This section contains uses of this drug that are not listed in the approved professional labeling for the drug but that may be prescribed by your health care professional. Use this drug for a condition that is listed in this section only if it has been so prescribed by your health care professional.
This drug may also be used to help relieve the symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome.
Take this medication by mouth as directed by your doctor. If you are self-treating, follow all directions on the product package. If you have any questions, ask your doctor or pharmacist. To prevent choking from this medication, take it with a full glass of water or other liquid (8 ounces/240 milliliters). If you are taking the wafers, chew them thoroughly before swallowing.
For powder forms of this medication, measure each dose according to the directions on the product label. Mix in a full glass of water or other liquid (8 ounces/240 milliliters), stir completely, and drink right away. You may add more liquid to the mixture if it becomes too thick. When preparing the medication, be careful not to breathe in the powder since it may rarely cause an allergic reaction.
Dosage is based on your age, medical condition, and response to treatment. Do not increase your dose or take this drug more often than directed.
This product may decrease the absorption of other medications you may be taking. Take this product at least 2 hours from your other medications. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information or if you have any questions.
It may take 1 to 3 days before this medication starts working. Use this medication regularly to get the most benefit from it. To help you remember, take it at the same time(s) each day. Do not take this medication for more than 7 days unless directed by your doctor.
Tell your doctor if your condition lasts or gets worse, or if bleeding from the rectum occurs. If you think you may have a serious medical problem, get medical help right away.
Gas or stomach cramping may occur. If any of these effects last or get worse, tell your doctor or pharmacist promptly.
If your doctor has directed you to use this product, remember that your doctor 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.
This product must be taken with at least a full glass of water or other liquid (8 ounces/240 milliliters) so that it will not swell in the throat, causing choking. Get medical help right away if after taking this product you have symptoms of choking such as:
- chest pain
- difficulty swallowing/breathing
A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, get medical help right away if you notice any symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, including:
- itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat)
- severe 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 or at www.fda.gov/medwatch.
In Canada - Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to Health Canada at 1-866-234-2345.
Before taking this bulk-forming laxative, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic 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.
Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history, especially of:
- stomach/intestinal blockage
- difficulty swallowing
- appendicitis or symptoms of appendicitis (such as nausea/vomiting, sudden or unexplained stomach/abdominal pain)
- a sudden change in bowel habits that lasts for longer than 2 weeks
- bleeding from the rectum
Before having surgery, tell your doctor or dentist about all the products you use (including prescription drugs, nonprescription drugs, and herbal products).
Some products may contain sugar and/or aspartame. Caution is advised if you have diabetes, phenylketonuria (PKU), or any other condition that requires you to limit/avoid these substances in your diet. Ask your doctor or pharmacist about using this product safely.
Tell your doctor if you are pregnant before using this medication.
It is unknown if this medication passes into breast milk. Consult your doctor before breast-feeding.
See also How To Use section.
Drug interactions may change how your medications work or increase your risk for serious side effects. This document does not contain all possible drug interactions. Keep a list of all the products you use (including prescription/nonprescription drugs and herbal products) and share it with your doctor and pharmacist. Do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any medicines without your doctor's approval.
If someone has overdosed and has serious symptoms such as passing out or trouble breathing, call 911. Otherwise, call a poison control center right away. US residents can call their local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222. Canada residents can call a provincial poison control center.
Keep all medical and lab appointments.
Lifestyle changes that may prevent or relieve constipation include exercising, drinking enough water, and eating a proper diet with fiber-rich foods such as bran, fresh fruits/vegetables. Talk to your doctor or pharmacist about lifestyle changes that might benefit you.
If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you remember. If it is near the time of the next dose, skip the missed dose. Take your next dose at the regular time. Do not double the dose to catch up.
Different brands of this medication have different storage needs. Check the product package for instructions on how to store your brand, or ask your pharmacist. Keep all medications 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.
HOW TO USE THIS INFORMATION: This is a summary and does NOT have all possible information about this product. This information does not assure that this product is safe, effective, or appropriate for you. This information is not individual medical advice and does not substitute for the advice of your health care professional. Always ask your health care professional for complete information about this product and your specific health needs.
Information last revised January 2023.
Copyright(c) 2023 First Databank, Inc.
Selected from NATIONAL DRUG DATA FILE (NDDF) data included with permission and copyrighted by First Databank, Inc., 2019. This copyrighted material has been downloaded from a licensed data provider.
The above information is intended to supplement, not substitute for, the expertise and judgment of your health care professional. You should consult your health care professional before taking any drug, changing your diet, or commencing or discontinuing any course of treatment.