What is Lactulose used for:
Lactulose is laxative that is used to help relieve constipation by making your stools softer and easier to pass. It works by drawing water into the intestines. It is also used for hepatic encephalopathy (a decline in brain function that occurs as a result of severe liver disease) by decreasing the amount of ammonia in the blood.
Do not take Lactulose:
• If you are allergic to Lactulose or any of the ingredients in this medicine. Tell your doctor about the allergy and what signs you had.
• If you have galactosemia (inability to digest galactose).
• If you suffer from an obstruction in your bowel.
• If you suffer from a perforation in your bowel.
• If you are unconscious or physically weak.
• If you have problems with your swallowing reflex.
• If you are dehydrated.
Warnings and Precautions:
• Talk to your doctor or pharmacist if you develop allergic reactions such as shortness of breath, skin rash, swelling of the face or neck, decreased blood pressure and dizziness.
• Talk to your doctor or pharmacist if you suffer from unexplained abdominal pain, if you have diabetes (high blood glucose levels) and if you have lactose intolerance (inability to digest lactose normally).
• Make sure to drink a lot of fluids (around 2 liters of water per day) during your intake of this medication. Contact your doctor if you do not feel relieved within several days of using the medication.
• You may need higher doses if you are taking this medication for hepatic encephalopathy (a decline in brain function that occurs as a result of severe liver disease). Therefore, your blood glucose levels may increase as a result of higher sugar amount being absorbed into the blood. Make sure to tell your doctor if you have diabetes and liver problems in order to adjust the doses of your diabetes medications.
• Do not use the medication for longer than needed to prevent dehydration and electrolytes imbalances.
• Administration of the medication should be decreased if you are experiencing abdominal pain, vomiting, nausea, abdominal distention.
• Do not give medication for patients less than 14 years of age without consulting the doctor for prescription first.
Possible side effects of lactulose:
Possible side effects of lactulose include allergic reactions, flatulence (usually resolves after a few days), nausea, abdominal pain, diarrhea and vomiting.
Other medicines and Lactulose
Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are taking, have recently taken or might take any other medications.
• Avoid taking other oral medications within several hours before, during or after intake of lactulose in order to prevent wash out of the medication.
• Avoid taking other laxatives at the same time to prevent excessive gastrointestinal side effects.
How to take Lactulose:
Dosage in stool softening and constipation:
Adults and adolescents:
Recommended starting dose is 15 – 45 ml (10 – 30 g) followed by a maintenance dose of 15 – 30 ml (10 – 20 g).
Children (7 – 14 years old):
Recommended starting dose is 15 ml (10 g) followed by a maintenance dose of 10 – 15 ml (7 – 10 g).
Children (1 – 6 years old):
Recommended starting and maintenance dose is 5 – 10 ml (3 – 7 g).
Infants under 1 year of age:
Recommended starting and maintenance dose is up to 5 ml (up to 3 g).
Dosage in hepatic encephalopathy (adults):
The recommended initial dose is 30 – 45 ml orally three to four times daily followed by a maintenance dose that is adjusted depending on your response until you start producing 2 – 3 stools daily.
• Dose may be taken as a single daily dose or may be divided into two daily doses.
• You can use measuring cup provided with the bottle to measure your dose.
• It may take few days for the medication to start giving effect. Maintenance dose is specified based on your response.
• You may take the medication without regard to meals.
How to store Lactulose
• Keep out of the reach of children and pets
• Do not store above 25°C. Do not refrigerate or freeze.
• Do not use beyond the expiry date mentioned on the bottle
• Expiry date is the same after opening the bottle
• Keep medication in its original pack to protect it from moisture
• Do not dispose medication in the wastewater or household waste