Glycerin

( Glycerol )

Pronunciation: GLIH-suh-rin
Class: Hyperosmotic, Osmotic diuretic, Ophthalmic

Trade Names

Introl
- Solution 75%

Pedia-Lax
- Liquid 4 mL/applicator

Sani-Supp
- Suppositories glycerin

Pharmacology

Reduces IOP by creating osmotic gradient between plasma and ocular fluids (oral form). Promotes bowel evacuation by local irritation and hyperosmotic actions (rectal form). Reduces edema and clears corneal haze by attracting water through semipermeable corneal epithelium (ophthalmic form).

Pharmacokinetics

Elimination

Eliminated by the kidneys.

Indications and Usage

Oral

Control of acute attack of glaucoma; reduction of IOP prior to and after ocular surgery.

Rectal

Short-term treatment of constipation; to evacuate the colon for rectal and bowel examinations.

Ophthalmic

Clearance of edematous corneas to facilitate ophthalmoscopic and gonioscopic examination in acute glaucoma, bullous keratitis, and Fuchs endothelial dystrophy.

Unlabeled Uses

Reduction of IOP and intracranial pressure via special IV preparations.

Contraindications

Oral

Anuria, severe dehydration, frank or impending acute pulmonary edema, severe cardiac decompensation, hypersensitivity to any of the ingredients.

Rectal

Nausea, vomiting, acute surgical abdomen, fecal impaction, intestinal obstruction, undiagnosed abdominal pain, hypersensitivity to any of the ingredients.

Dosage and Administration

Adults

PO 1 to 2 g/kg 1 to 90 min prior to surgery. Rectal Insert 1 suppository (3 g) or 5 to 15 mL as rectal enema and retain 15 min. Ophthalmic 1 to 2 drops instilled in eye(s) prior to examination.

Children older than 6 y of age

Rectal Same as adults.

Children 2 to 6 y of age

Rectal 1 to 1.5 g suppository or 2 to 5 mL as rectal enema.

General Advice

  • Administer 50% oral solution with sodium chloride 0.9% flavored with orange, lemon, or lime juice or administer commercially prepared 50% or 75% flavored solution.
  • Administer suppository high in rectum with patient lying on side; encourage patient to retain suppository in rectum for at least 15 min.
  • To administer rectal liquid, have patient lie on left side, insert stem of applicator into rectum with tip pointing toward navel, squeeze unit until nearly all liquid has been dispensed, and remove applicator. Small amount of liquid may remain in unit.
  • Ophthalmic solution may cause burning sensation in eye. Administer local anesthetic before instillation of drug.

Storage/Stability

Store between 59° and 86°F. Do not freeze suppositories.

Drug Interactions

None well documented.

Adverse Reactions

Cardiovascular

Arrhythmias.

CNS

Headache; confusion; disorientation; weakness; dizziness; fainting.

Dermatologic

Perianal irritation; sweating.

EENT

Ocular pain and irritation.

GI

Abdominal cramps, bloating, excessive bowel activity, flatulence, nausea, vomiting.

Metabolic

Dehydration; hyperosmolar nonketotic coma.

Precautions

Pregnancy

Category C .

Lactation

Undetermined.

Children

Do not administer enemas or suppositories to children younger than 2 y of age. Safety and efficacy of other forms undetermined.

Elderly

Use with caution.

Special Risk Patients

Use oral form with caution in patients with hypovolemia, confused mental states, CHF, diabetes mellitus, and severe dehydration.

Weight gain

May occur with continued use.

Patient Information

  • Inform patient of need to maintain supine position after administration of oral form of drug.
  • With rectal form, advise patient about dangers associated with long-term laxative use. Instruct patient in alternative measures to encourage bowel movements (eg, increase fluid intake, increase intake of dietary fiber, increase activity). Instruct patient to avoid laxative use in presence of abdominal pain, vomiting, or nausea.

Copyright © 2009 Wolters Kluwer Health.

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