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Terms Of Use

LACTULOSE

Brand Name(s) : Duphalac, Lactugal, Laevolac
Warnings
Uses
Side Effects
Precautions
Interactions
Overdose

LACTULOSE WARNINGS

Lactulose should be used with caution in:

  • patients with an intolerance to the sugars lactose, fructose and galactose.
  • People with diabetes

It should not be used in:

  • Galactosaemia (a rare condition in which the body has difficulty digesting the sugar galactose), patients with a blockage of the intestine (gut) caused by anything else other than constipation, patients who are allergic to lactulose or to any other ingredient contained in the medicine.

Also see list of precautions and interactions

STORAGE

Do not store above 25ºC. Do not refrigerate or freeze.

LACTULOSE USES

Lactulose is used to treat constipation.

It is a laxative, sometimes known as an osmotic laxative.

It is used to loosen the stool (motion) in the large intestine (bowel) or gut in patients who have difficulty going to the toilet (passing stools) or who go to the toilet less often than is usual for them.

In general this drug is used treat constipation.

Benefits of being on this drug can include making it easier to go to the toilet, feeling less bloated and feeling more comfortable.

Listed below are the typical uses of lactulose.

On occasion your doctor may prescribe this medicine to treat a condition not on the above list. Such conditions are listed below.

  • A liver problem called hepatic encephalopathy (which can sometimes lead to hepatic coma)

HOW TO USE/TAKE

How often do I take it?

  • Take this medication orally usually twice a day for constipation. It can be mixed with fruit juice or water. It may be necessary to take lactulose more frequently if it is prescribed for hepatic encephalopathy.
  • Use this medication regularly or for the duration of the prescription in order to get the most benefit from it.
  • Remember to use it at the same time each day - unless specifically told otherwise by your doctor.
  • It may take up to 2 to 3 days before the full benefit of this drug takes effect.
  • Certain medical conditions may require different dosage instructions as directed by your doctor.

What dose?

  • Dosage is based on your age, gender, medical condition, response to therapy, and use of certain interacting medicines.

Do I need to avoid anything?

  • It is not necessary to avoid anything. Consult your doctor or pharmacist for more details.

LACTULOSE SIDE EFFECTS

  • Increased wind and feeling bloated (this may occur during the first few days of treatment but usually disappears after a few days)
  • Diarrhoea (particularly with high doses)
  • Stomach (abdominal) pain
  • Nausea and vomiting

If any of these persist or you consider them severe then inform doctor or pharmacist.

Remember that your doctor has prescribed this medication because 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.

A serious allergic reaction to this drug is unlikely, but seek immediate medical attention if it occurs. Symptoms of a serious 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.

The Yellow Card Scheme allows you to report suspected side effects from any type of medicine (which includes vaccines, herbals and over the counter medicines) that you are taking. It is run by the medicines safety watchdog called the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory agency (MHRA). Please report any suspected side effect on the Yellow Card Scheme website.

LACTULOSE PRECAUTIONS

Before taking lactulose, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to it; or to other laxatives; or if you have any other allergies.

This medication should not be used if you have certain medical conditions. Before using this medicine, consult your doctor or pharmacist if you have: galactosaemia (a rare condition in which the body has difficulty digesting the sugar galactose), patients with a blockage of the intestine (gut) caused by anything else other than constipation, patients who are allergic to lactulose or to any other ingredient contained in the medicine.

Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history, especially any of the following: diabetes, an intolerance to the sugars lactose, fructose and galactose.

Before having surgery, tell your doctor or dentist that you are taking this medication.

Does alcohol intake affect this drug?

  • Alcohol intake is not known to affect lactulose.

The elderly: lactulose can be used in the elderly.

Pregnancy and breastfeeding - please ensure you read the detailed information below

PREGNANCY

Lactulose is suitable to take during pregnancy. Ask your doctor or pharmacist if you have any doubts or questions about this.

It is sensible to limit use of medication during pregnancy whenever possible. However, your doctor may decide that the benefits outweigh the risks in individual circumstances and after a careful assessment of your specific health situation.

If you have any doubts or concerns you are advised to discuss the medicine with your doctor or pharmacist.

BREAST FEEDING

Lactulose is suitable to take if you are breastfeeding.
Ask your doctor or pharmacist if you have any doubts or questions about this.

It is sensible to limit use of medication during breastfeeding whenever possible. However, your doctor may decide that the benefits outweigh the risks in individual circumstances and after a careful assessment of your specific health situation.

If you have any doubts or concerns you are advised to discuss the medicine with your doctor or pharmacist.

LACTULOSE INTERACTIONS

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 them first.

This drug should not be used with the following medications because very serious, possibly fatal interactions may occur: There are no known interactions

Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist of all prescription and non-prescription/herbal products you may use, especially of:

  • There are no known interactions for lactulose.

This information does not contain all possible interactions. Therefore, before using lactulose, tell your doctor or pharmacist of all the products you use.

LACTULOSE OVERDOSE

Symptoms of an overdose include diarrhoea and stomach (abdominal) pain.

If you think you, or someone you care for, might have accidentally taken more than the recommended dose of lactulose or intentional overdose is suspected, contact your local hospital, GP or if in England call 111. In Scotland call NHS 24. In Wales, call NHS Direct Wales. In the case of medical emergencies, always dial 999.

MISSED DOSE

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 and resume your usual dosing schedule. Do not double the dose to catch up.

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Source: Selected from data included with permission and copyrighted by Boots UK Limited or TicTac Communications Ltd. This copyrighted material is sourced from a licensed data provider and is not for distribution, except as may be authorised by the applicable terms of use.
CONDITIONS OF USE: The information in this database is intended to supplement, not substitute for, the expertise and judgement of healthcare professionals. The information is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, drug interactions or adverse events, nor should it be construed to indicate that use of a particular medicine is safe, appropriate or effective for you or anyone else. A healthcare professional should be consulted before taking any medicine, changing any diet, or discontinuing any course of treatment.

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