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STERCULIA

Brand Name(s) : Normacol, Normacol Plus (in combination with frangula)
Warnings
Uses
Side Effects
Precautions
Interactions
Overdose

STERCULIA WARNINGS

Sterculia should be used with caution in: those who are likely to have restricted fluid intake (such as elderly or infirm patients who may need to be supervised when taking this medication), or patients with ulcerative colitis (a disease of the lower intestine [colon] characterised by open sores [ulcers] with symptoms such as frequent diarrhoea mixed with blood).

It should not be used in: patients who have difficulty swallowing, or who have an obstruction of the intestine (gut) or who are likely to have an obstruction of the intestine, intestinal atony (loss of intestinal muscle strength), or faecal impaction (large mass of dry, hard stool in the gut).

Also see list of precautions and interactions.

STORAGE

Store in a dry place below 25ºC.

STERCULIA USES

What is it used for?

  • Sterculia is used to relieve constipation (difficulty with bowel movements).
  • It is a vegetable gum from the karaya tree acting as a natural source of dietary fibre, and is called a bulk-forming laxative, which induces a laxative effect (stimulating stool production).
  • It is used to relieve constipation by increasing the volume of the faeces in the gut by forming a soft, bulky stool. This has the effect of stimulating the muscles of the bowels to work and push the faeces out.
  • In general this drug is used to relieve constipation by increasing the volume of faeces and to keep bowel movements regular.
  • Benefits of being on this drug can include regular bowel movements and softening of hard stools.

Listed below are the typical uses of sterculia.

  • Treatment of constipation, particularly simple constipation, constipation of unknown cause or constipation during pregnancy
  • Management of patients with colostomies or ileostomies (surgical procedures in which the intestine is cut and brought through the stomachwall to create an artificial opening through which bodily waste products are collected)
  • Management of diverticular disease (a painful condition of the large intestine) and other conditions requiring a high fibrediet
  • Starting and maintaining bowel action after rectal or anal surgery
  • To reduce the likelihood of damage to the gut in people who have swallowed a sharp object.

On occasion your doctor may prescribe this medicine to treat a condition not on the above list. Such conditions are listed below. None.

HOW TO USE/TAKE

How often do I take it?

  • Take this medication by mouth, usually once or twice daily after meals. The granules should be placed dry on the tongue and swallowed immediately without chewing or crushing, with plenty of water or a soft drink.
  • Use this medication regularly 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 a day 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?

  • Do not take sterculia preparations immediately before going to bed, particularly if elderly as the preparation swells in contact with liquid. Consult your doctor or pharmacist for more details.

When can I stop?

  • It is important to continue taking this medication even if you feel well, unless your doctor tells you to stop.

STERCULIA SIDE EFFECTS

  • Wind (flatulence)
  • Swollen belly
  • Obstruction of the gut
  • Large mass of dry, hard stool in the gut (faecal impaction).
If any of these persist or you consider them severe then inform your doctor.

Tell your doctor immediately if you develop any of the following symptoms: prolonged constipation.

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.

STERCULIA PRECAUTIONS

Before taking sterculia, 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: difficulty swallowing, or have an obstruction of the intestine (gut) or who are likely to have an obstruction of the intestine, intestinal atony (loss of intestinal muscle strength), or faecal impaction (large mass of dry, hard stool in the gut).

Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history, especially any of the following: any history of disorders that cause obstruction or partial obstruction of the gut.

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 sterculia.

The elderly: sterculia can be used in the elderly.

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

PREGNANCY

Sterculia 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

Sterculia is suitable to take if you are breastfeeding.

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.

STERCULIA 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:

  • None known.

If you are currently using any of these medications, tell your doctor or pharmacist before starting sterculia.

Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist of all prescription and non-prescription/herbal products you may use, especially of: None known

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

STERCULIA OVERDOSE

Symptoms of an overdose may include: obstruction of the gut (intestine).

If you think you, or someone you care for, might have accidentally taken more than the recommended dose of sterculia 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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