Lactulose

Medication Information Leaflet

​What is this medication for?

This medication is used to treat constipation. It encourages bowel movement by drawing water into the bowel. This helps to soften the stools and increase bowel movement.
  • This medicine may take up to 48 hours to work. 
It is also used in the treatment of hepatic encephalopathy, a condition associated with liver disease.

How should I take/use this medication?

  • Take your medication as instructed by your healthcare professional. 
  • Take this medicine with a glass of water, with or without food.

What should I do if I forget to take/use this medication?

If you forget to take a dose, take it as soon as you remember. Skip the dose if it is too near to your next dose. Then take your next dose at the usual time. Do not take two doses to make up for the missed dose. 


What precautions should I take?

Inform your healthcare professional if: 
  • You are allergic to this medication or any of the other ingredients of this medication. This includes a history of lactose or milk intolerance.
  • You are on a galactose or lactose free (or milk free) diet. This preparation contains both lactose and galactose.
  • You are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or breastfeeding.
  • You are taking any other medications, including supplements, traditional medications and herbal remedies. 
  • You have or had history of bowel obstruction (blockage in the small or large intestine)

What are some common side-effects of this medication?

  • Lactulose may cause some discomfort such as passing gas, cramps, nausea and vomiting.
Consult your healthcare professional if the symptoms do not go away or become bothersome. 

What are some rare but serious side-effects that I need to seek medical advice immediately?

Consult your healthcare professional if you have bleeding from the anus.

The symptoms of a drug allergy include one or more of the following: 
  • Swollen face/eyes/lips/tongue
  • Difficulty in breathing
  • Itchy skin rashes over your whole body
If you experience any of these symptoms, you should stop your medication and see your healthcare professional immediately.

What food or medication should I avoid when I take this medication?

Inform your healthcare professional if you are taking or intend to take any other medication, supplements, traditional medications or herbal remedies. 

How should I store this medication?

Store in a cool and dry place, away from direct sunlight. Keep this medication away from children. 

How should I throw away this medication safely?

Pack this medication into a black trash bag and seal it tightly before throwing into the rubbish chute or bin. 


Disclaimers
If you take more than the recommended dose, please seek medical advice immediately. The information provided on this page does not replace information from your healthcare professional. Please consult your healthcare professional for more information.


This article is jointly developed by members of the National Medication Information workgroup. The workgroup consists of cluster partners (National Healthcare Group, National University Health System and SingHealth), community pharmacies (Guardian, Unity and Watsons) and Pharmaceutical Society of Singapore.

Last updated on September 2019


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Lactulose

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