Metamucil

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Generic Name: Metamucil Brand Name(s): Generics only. No brands available.

Uses

What is Metamucil® (psyllium) used for?

Psyllium is a bulk-forming fiber laxative. Psyllium works by absorbing liquid and swelling in the intestines to create a softer, bulky stool that is easier to pass.

Metamucil® is used to treat occasional constipation or bowel irregularity. Psyllium may also help lower cholesterol when used together with a diet low in cholesterol and saturated fat.

Metamucil® may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.

How should I take Metamucil® (psyllium)?

Use exactly as directed on the label, or as prescribed by your doctor. Do not use in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended.

Laxatives may be habit-forming if they are used too often or for too long.

Take psyllium with a full glass (at least 8 ounces) of water or other liquid. Psyllium can swell in your throat and cause choking if you don’t take it with enough liquid. Drink plenty of fluids each day to help improve bowel regularity.

Swallow psyllium capsules one at a time. Do not take more than the recommended number of capsules per dose.

Psyllium powder must be mixed with liquid before you take it. Do not swallow the dry powder. Mix the powder with at least 8 ounces of liquid such as water or fruit juice. Stir and drink this mixture right away. To get the entire dose, add a little more water to the same glass, swirl gently and drink right away.

The psyllium wafer must be chewed before you swallow it.

Psyllium usually produces a bowel movement within 12 to 72 hours.

It may take up to 3 days before your symptoms improve. Do not take psyllium for longer than 7 days in a row without a doctor’s advice. Using a laxative too often or for too long may cause severe medical problems with your intestines.

Call your doctor if your symptoms do not improve, or if they get worse while using psyllium.

Psyllium may be only part of a complete program of treatment that also includes diet, exercise, and weight control. Follow your doctor’s instructions very closely.

How do I store Metamucil® (psyllium)?

Metamucil® is best stored at room temperature away from direct light and moisture. To prevent drug damage, you should not store Metamucil® in the bathroom or the freezer. There may be different brands of Metamucil® that may have different storage needs. It is important to always check the product package for instructions on storage, or ask your pharmacist. For safety, you should keep all medicines away from children and pets.

You should not flush Metamucil® down the toilet or pour them into a drain unless instructed to do so. It is important to properly discard this product when it is expired or no longer needed. Consult your pharmacist for more details about how to safely discard your product.

Precautions & warnings

What should I know before using Metamucil® (psyllium)?

Before using this drug, tell your doctor if:

  • You are pregnant or breastfeeding. This is because, while you are expecting or feeding a baby, you should only take medicines on the recommendation of a doctor.
  • You are taking any other medicines. This includes any medicines you are taking which are available to buy without a prescription, such as herbal and complementary medicines.
  • You have allergy with any of active or inactive ingredients of Metamucil® or other medications.
  • You have any other illnesses, disorders, or medical conditions.

Psyllium products may contain sugar, sodium, or artificial sweetener. These ingredients may be of concern if you have diabetes, high blood pressure, or phenylketonuria (PKU). Check the product label if you have any of these conditions.

Ask a doctor before using this medicine if you are pregnant or breast-feeding. Your dose needs may be different during pregnancy or while you are nursing.

Do not give psyllium to a child younger than 6 years old without medical advice.

Avoid taking other oral (by mouth) medicines within 2 hours before or 2 hours after you take psyllium. Bulk-forming laxatives can make it harder for your body to absorb other medications, possibly making them less effective.

Avoid breathing in the dust from psyllium powder when mixing. Inhaling psyllium dust may cause an allergic reaction.

If you take psyllium as part of a cholesterol-lowering treatment plan, avoid eating foods that are high in fat or cholesterol. Your treatment will not be as effective in lowering your cholesterol if you do not follow a cholesterol-lowering diet plan.

Is it safe during pregnancy or breastfeeding?

There isn’t enough information about the safety of using Metamucil® during pregnancy and breastfeeding. Please always consult with your doctor to weigh the potential benefits and risks before taking Metamucil®.

Side effects

What side effects can occur from Metamucil® (psyllium)?

Get emergency medical help if you have signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficult breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Stop using psyllium and call your doctor at once if you have:

  • Choking or trouble swallowing
  • Severe stomach pain, cramping, nausea or vomiting
  • Constipation that lasts longer than 7 days
  • Rectal bleeding
  • Itchy skin rash

Common side effects may include:

  • Bloating
  • Minor change in your bowel habits

Not everyone experiences these side effects. There may be some side effects not listed above. If you have any concerns about a side-effect, please consult your doctor or pharmacist.

Interactions

What drugs may interact with Metamucil® (psyllium)?

Metamucil® may interact with other drugs that you are currently taking, which can change how your drug works or increase your risk for serious side effects. To avoid any potential drug interactions, you should keep a list of all the drugs you are using (including prescription drugs, nonprescription drugs, and herbal products) and share it with your doctor and pharmacist. For your safety, do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any drugs without your doctor’s approval.

Does food or alcohol interact with Metamucil® (psyllium)?

Metamucil® may interact with food or alcohol by altering the way the drug works or increase the risk for serious side effects. Please discuss with your doctor or pharmacist any potential food or alcohol interactions before using this drug.

What health conditions may interact with Metamucil® (psyllium)?

Metamucil® may interact with your health condition. This interaction may worsen your health condition or alter the way the drug works. It is important to always let your doctor and pharmacist know all the health conditions you currently have.

Health conditions that may interact with this drug are:

  • Stomach pain, nausea, or vomiting
  • Trouble swallowing
  • A sudden change in bowel habits lasting longer than 2 weeks

Dosage

The information provided is not a substitute for any medical advice. You should ALWAYS consult with your doctor or pharmacist before using Metamucil® (psyllium).

What is the dose of Metamucil® (psyllium) for an adult?

Usual Adult Dose for Constipation

Daily fiber:

  • Adults 19 to 50 years: Male: 38 g/day; Female: 25 g/day
  • Pregnancy: 28 g/day
  • Lactation: 29 g/day

Dose: 1 to 2 rounded teaspoonfuls, 1 to 2 packets, 1 to 2 wafers, or 5 to 6 capsules orally with 8 ounces of fluid 1 to 3 times a day

Usual Adult Dose for Irritable Bowel Syndrome

Daily fiber:

  • Adults 19 to 50 years: Male: 38 g/day; Female: 25 g/day
  • Pregnancy: 28 g/day
  • Lactation: 29 g/day

Dose: 1 to 2 rounded teaspoonfuls, 1 to 2 packets, 1 to 2 wafers, or 5 to 6 capsules orally with 8 ounces of fluid 1 to 3 times a day

What is the dose of Metamucil® (psyllium) for a child?

Usual Pediatric Dose for Constipation

Daily fiber:

  • Children 1 to 3 years: 19 g/day
  • Children 4 to 8 years: 25 g/day
  • Children 9 to 13 years: Male: 31 g/day; Female: 26 g/day
  • Children 14 to 18 years: Male: 38 g/day; Female: 26 g/day

Constipation:

  • Children 6 to 11 years: 1.25 to 15 g orally per day in divided doses
  • Children greater than or equal to 12 years and Adults: 2.5 to 30 g per day in divided doses

How is Metamucil® (psyllium) available?

Metamucil® is available in the following dosage forms and strengths:

  • Capsule
  • Liquid

What should I do in case of an emergency or overdose?

In case of an emergency or an overdose, call your local emergency services or go to your nearest emergency room.

What should I do if I miss a dose?

If you miss a dose of Metamucil®, take it as soon as possible. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and take your regular dose as scheduled. Do not take a double dose.

Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

Review Date: November 9, 2017 | Last Modified: November 9, 2017

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