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Aluminum hydroxide

Generic Name: aluminum hydroxide (a LOO mi num hye DROX ide)
Brand Name: Amphojel, Alu-Cap, Dialume, Alu-Tab, Alternagel, Aloh-Gel

Medically reviewed on March 7, 2018.

What is aluminum hydroxide?

Aluminum is a naturally occurring mineral. Aluminum hydroxide is an antacid.

Aluminum hydroxide is used to treat heartburn, upset stomach, sour stomach, or acid indigestion. Aluminum hydroxide is also used to reduce phosphate levels in people with certain kidney conditions.

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

Important Information

Ask a doctor or pharmacist before taking this medicine if you have kidney problems, severe constipation, if you are dehydrated, or if you drink alcohol frequently.

Before taking this medicine

Heartburn can mimic early symptoms of a heart attack. Get emergency medical help if you have chest pain that spreads to your jaw or shoulder and you feel anxious or light-headed.

Ask a doctor or pharmacist if it is safe for you to take this medicine if you have:

  • kidney disease, a history of kidney stones;

  • severe constipation;

  • if you are dehydrated; or

  • if you drink alcohol frequently.

Ask a doctor before using this medicine if you are pregnant or breast-feeding.

How should I take aluminum hydroxide?

Use exactly as directed on the label, or as prescribed by your doctor.

Aluminum hydroxide is usually taken between meals or at bedtime.

Take this medicine with a full glass (8 ounces) of water.

Shake the oral suspension (liquid) before you measure a dose. Use the dosing syringe provided, or use a medicine dose-measuring device (not a kitchen spoon).

Do not take aluminum hydroxide for longer than 2 weeks without your doctor's advice.

Store at room temperature away from moisture, heat, and light.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Since aluminum hydroxide is used when needed, you may not be on a dosing schedule. Skip any missed dose if it's almost time for your next dose. Do not use two doses at one time.

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 constipation, weight loss, confusion, mood changes, or urinating less than usual or not at all.

What should I avoid while taking aluminum hydroxide?

Antacids can make it harder for your body to absorb other medicines you take by mouth. Avoid taking other medications within 2 hours before or 2 hours after you take aluminum hydroxide.

Aluminum hydroxide side effects

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 the medicine and call your doctor at once if you have:

  • severe stomach pain or constipation, loss of appetite;

  • pain when you urinate;

  • muscle weakness, tiredness;

  • extreme drowsiness; or

  • bloody or tarry stools, coughing up blood or vomit that looks like coffee grounds.

Less serious side effects may be more likely, and you may have none at all.

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)

Aluminum hydroxide dosing information

Usual Adult Dose for Dyspepsia:

500 to 600 mg orally 4 to 6 times a day as needed, between meals and at bedtime.

Usual Adult Dose for Duodenal Ulcer:

500 to 1500 mg orally 4 to 6 times a day as needed, between meals and at bedtime.

Usual Adult Dose for Erosive Esophagitis:

500 to 1500 mg orally 4 to 6 times a day as needed, between meals and at bedtime.

Usual Adult Dose for Gastric Ulcer:

500 to 1500 mg orally 4 to 6 times a day as needed, between meals and at bedtime.

Usual Adult Dose for Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease:

500 to 1500 mg orally 4 to 6 times a day as needed, between meals and at bedtime.

Usual Adult Dose for Zollinger-Ellison Syndrome:

500 to 3600 mg orally 4 to 6 times a day as needed, between meals and at bedtime.

Usual Adult Dose for Hyperphosphatemia:

500 to 1000 mg orally 4 times a day, with meals and at bedtime. The dosage should be titrated to the serum phosphate level.

Usual Pediatric Dose for Gastrointestinal Hemorrhage:

G.I. hemorrhage prophylaxis:
0 to 4 weeks: 1 mL/kg orally every 4 hours as needed.
4 weeks to 1 year: 2 to 5 mL/dose every 1 to 2 hours, titrate to gastric pH > 3.5.
1 to 12 years: 5 to 15 mL/dose orally every 1 to 2 hours, titrate to gastric pH > 3.5.

Usual Pediatric Dose for Hyperphosphatemia:

1 to 12 years: use Al(OH)3 or aluminum carbonate gel product only: 50 to 150 mg/kg/day orally (as aluminum hydroxide gel) administered in equally divided doses every 4 to 6 hours; titrate to normal serum phosphate level.

Usual Pediatric Dose for Peptic Ulcer:

1 month to 1 year: 1 to 2 mL/kg/dose orally 1 to 3 hours after meals and at bedtime.
1 year to 12 years: 5 to 15 mL orally every 3 to 6 hours or 1 and 3 hours after meals and at bedtime.

What other drugs will affect aluminum hydroxide?

Other drugs may affect aluminum hydroxide, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Tell your doctor about all your current medicines and any medicine you start or stop using.

Further information

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.

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.

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