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Glycerin

Medically reviewed by Drugs.com. Last updated on Jul 27, 2020.

Pronunciation

(GLIS er in)

Index Terms

  • Glycerol

Dosage Forms

Excipient information presented when available (limited, particularly for generics); consult specific product labeling. [DSC] = Discontinued product

Enema, Rectal:

Fleet Liquid Glycerin Supp: 5.4 g/dose (7.5 mL)

Suppository, Rectal:

Pedia-Lax: 1 g (12 ea); 2.8 g (4 mL) [contains edetate disodium]

Sani-Supp Adult: 2 g (10 ea [DSC], 25 ea [DSC])

Sani-Supp Pediatric: 1.2 g (10 ea [DSC], 25 ea [DSC])

Generic: 1 g (12 ea, 25 ea); 2 g (12 ea, 24 ea, 25 ea, 50 ea)

Brand Names: U.S.

  • Fleet Liquid Glycerin Supp [OTC]
  • Pedia-Lax [OTC]
  • Sani-Supp Adult [OTC] [DSC]
  • Sani-Supp Pediatric [OTC] [DSC]

Pharmacologic Category

  • Laxative, Osmotic

Pharmacology

Osmotic dehydrating agent which increases osmotic pressure; draws fluid into colon and thus stimulates evacuation

Absorption

Rectal: Poorly absorbed

Onset of Action

Constipation: Suppository: 15 to 30 minutes

Use: Labeled Indications

Constipation: Relief of occasional constipation.

Mouth/throat irritation: Temporary relief of minor discomfort and protection of irritated areas in sore mouth and sore throat.

Dosing: Adult

Constipation: Rectal: One adult suppository once daily as needed or as directed

Mouth/throat irritation: Oral: Apply a one-inch strip directly to tongue and oral cavity as needed

Dosing: Geriatric

Refer to adult dosing.

Dosing: Pediatric

Fecal impaction, rapid disempaction: Limited data available: Rectal: Infants and Children <2 years: Suppository: 1 pediatric suppository once (Wyllie 2011)

Constipation: Rectal: Suppository:

Children 2 to 5 years: 1 pediatric suppository once daily as needed or as directed

Children ≥6 years and Adolescents: 1 adult suppository once daily as needed or as directed

Mouth/throat irritation: Oral: Oral gel: Children ≥2 years and Adolescents: Apply a 1-inch strip directly to tongue and oral cavity as needed

Administration

Oral: Apply gel to tongue and around inside and outside of tooth and gum surfaces; do not rinse out.

Rectal: Insert suppository high in the rectum and retain ~15 minutes; suppository does not need to melt to produce response

Storage

Store at room temperature; protect rectal products from heat.

Drug Interactions

Dichlorphenamide: Laxatives may enhance the hypokalemic effect of Dichlorphenamide. Monitor therapy

Adverse Reactions

Frequency not defined.

Gastrointestinal: Abdominal cramps, rectal irritation, tenesmus

Warnings/Precautions

Dosage forms specific issues:

• Oral products: For use as an oral demulcent; do not swallow excessive amounts.

• Rectal products: May cause rectal discomfort or a burning sensation.

Pregnancy Considerations

Glycerin suppositories are generally considered acceptable for use during pregnancy (Cullen 2007; Wald 2003).

Patient Education

What is this drug used for?

All rectal products:

• It is used to treat constipation.

All oral products:

• It is used to treat dry mouth.

All drugs may cause side effects. However, many people have no side effects or only have minor side effects. Call your doctor or get medical help if any of these side effects or any other side effects bother you or do not go away:

• Nausea

• Abdominal cramps

• Passing gas

• Diarrhea

• Burning

• Rectal irritation

WARNING/CAUTION: Even though it may be rare, some people may have very bad and sometimes deadly side effects when taking a drug. Tell your doctor or get medical help right away if you have any of the following signs or symptoms that may be related to a very bad side effect:

• Severe abdominal pain

• Rectal pain

• Rectal bleeding

• Signs of an allergic reaction, like rash; hives; itching; red, swollen, blistered, or peeling skin with or without fever; wheezing; tightness in the chest or throat; trouble breathing, swallowing, or talking; unusual hoarseness; or swelling of the mouth, face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Note: This is not a comprehensive list of all side effects. Talk to your doctor if you have questions.

Consumer Information Use and Disclaimer: This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take this medicine or any other medicine. Only the healthcare provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for a specific patient. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a limited summary of general information about the medicine's uses from the patient education leaflet and is not intended to be comprehensive. This limited summary does NOT include all information available about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to this medicine. This information is not intended to provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment and does not replace information you receive from the healthcare provider. For a more detailed summary of information about the risks and benefits of using this medicine, please speak with your healthcare provider and review the entire patient education leaflet.

Further information

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