magnesium hydroxide

Pronunciation

Generic Name: magnesium hydroxide (mag NEE see um hye DROCK side)
Brand Name: Ex-Lax Milk of Magnesia, Milk of Magnesia, Pedia-Lax Chewable, Phillips Milk of Magnesia, Concentrated Phillips Milk of Magnesia

What is magnesium hydroxide?

Magnesium is a naturally occurring mineral. Magnesium is important for many systems in the body especially the muscles and nerves. Magnesium hydroxide also reduces stomach acid, and increases water in the intestines which may induce defecation.

Magnesium hydroxide is used as a laxative to relieve occasional constipation (irregularity) and as an antacid to relieve indigestion, sour stomach, and heartburn.

Magnesium hydroxide may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.

What is the most important information I should know about magnesium hydroxide?

Do not use magnesium hydroxide without a doctor's advice if you have stomach pain, nausea, or vomiting.

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Call your doctor at once if you have if you have a sudden change in bowel habits that persists over a period of 2 weeks. Do not use magnesium hydroxide for longer than 7 days without medical advice.

What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before taking magnesium hydroxide?

Do not use magnesium hydroxide without a doctor's advice if you have stomach pain, nausea, or vomiting.

Ask a doctor or pharmacist if it is safe for you to take this medicine if you have other medical conditions, especially kidney disease.

It is not known whether magnesium hydroxide will be harmful to an unborn baby. Do not use this medicine without a doctor's advice if you are pregnant.

It is not known whether magnesium hydroxide will be harmful to an nursing baby. Do not use this medicine without a doctor's advice if you are breast-feeding a baby.

How should I take magnesium hydroxide?

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.

The chewable tablet must be chewed before you swallow it.

Measure liquid medicine with a special dose-measuring spoon or medicine cup. If you do not have a dose-measuring device, ask your pharmacist for one.

You may need to shake the oral suspension before each use.

Do not use magnesium hydroxide for longer than 7 days without medical advice.

Call your doctor at once if you have if you have a sudden change in bowel habits that persists over a period of 2 weeks.

Store at room temperature away from moisture and heat.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Since magnesium hydroxide is used when needed, you may not be on a dosing schedule. If you are on a schedule, use the missed dose as soon as you remember. Skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next scheduled dose. Do not use extra medicine to make up the missed dose.

What happens if I overdose?

Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222.

Overdose symptoms may include severe diarrhea, muscle weakness, mood changes, slow or irregular heartbeats, and little or no urinating.

What should I avoid while taking magnesium hydroxide?

Follow your doctor's instructions about any restrictions on food, beverages, or activity.

Magnesium hydroxide side effects

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

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

  • rectal bleeding;

  • no bowel movement after using the medicine as a laxative;

  • severe nausea, vomiting;

  • slow heartbeats; or

  • a light-headed feeling, like you might pass out.

Common side effects may include:

  • drowsiness; or

  • flushing (warmth, redness, or tingly feeling).

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

See also: Side effects (in more detail)

Magnesium hydroxide dosing information

Usual Adult Dose for Constipation:

Oral liquid:
30 to 60 mL orally once a day or in divided doses.

Chewable tablet:
8 tablets orally once a day or in divided doses.

Usual Adult Dose for Dyspepsia:

Oral liquid:
Initial dose: 5 to 15 mL orally 1 to 4 times a day as needed.
Alternatively, 1 to 3 oral tablets 1 to 4 times a day as needed.

Chewable tablet:
2 to 4 tablets orally every 4 hours as needed up to 4 times in a 24 hour period.

Usual Pediatric Dose for Constipation:

Oral liquid:
1 year or less: 0.5 mL/kg per dose.
2 to 5 years: 5 to 15 mL orally once a day or in divided doses.
6 to 12 years: 15 to 30 mL orally once a day or in divided doses.
13 to 18 years: 30 to 60 mL orally once a day or in divided doses.

Chewable tablet:
3 to 5 years: 2 tablets orally once a day or in divided doses.
6 to 11 years: 4 tablets orally once a day or in divided doses.
12 to 18 years: 8 tablets orally once a day or in divided doses.

Usual Pediatric Dose for Dyspepsia:

Chewable tablet:
12 to 18 years: 2 to 4 tablets orally every 4 hours up to 4 times in a 24 hour period.

What other drugs will affect magnesium hydroxide?

Other drugs may interact with magnesium hydroxide, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Tell each of your health care providers about all medicines you use now and any medicine you start or stop using.

Where can I get more information?

  • Your pharmacist can provide more information about magnesium hydroxide.
  • Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.
  • Disclaimer: Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided by Cerner Multum, Inc. ('Multum') is accurate, up-to-date, and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. Drug information contained herein may be time sensitive. Multum information has been compiled for use by healthcare practitioners and consumers in the United States and therefore Multum does not warrant that uses outside of the United States are appropriate, unless specifically indicated otherwise. Multum's drug information does not endorse drugs, diagnose patients or recommend therapy. Multum's drug information is an informational resource designed to assist licensed healthcare practitioners in caring for their patients and/or to serve consumers viewing this service as a supplement to, and not a substitute for, the expertise, skill, knowledge and judgment of healthcare practitioners. The absence of a warning for a given drug or drug combination in no way should be construed to indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective or appropriate for any given patient. Multum does not assume any responsibility for any aspect of healthcare administered with the aid of information Multum provides. The information contained herein is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. If you have questions about the drugs you are taking, check with your doctor, nurse or pharmacist.

Copyright 1996-2012 Cerner Multum, Inc. Version: 4.04. Revision Date: 2013-12-31, 7:51:46 AM.

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