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Doculax Side Effects

Generic name: docusate / senna

Medically reviewed by Last updated on Aug 18, 2020.

Note: This document contains side effect information about docusate / senna. Some of the dosage forms listed on this page may not apply to the brand name Doculax.

For the Consumer

Applies to docusate / senna: oral tablet

What are some side effects that I need to call my doctor about right away?

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:

  • 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.

What are some other side effects of this drug?

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 you have any side effects that bother you or do not go away.

These are not all of the side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, call your doctor. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects.

You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-332-1088. You may also report side effects at

For Healthcare Professionals

Applies to docusate/senna: oral capsule, oral tablet


Gastrointestinal side effects of docusate have included gastrointestinal cramping.

Gastrointestinal side effects of senna have included esophageal impaction and duodenal bezoars. These effects have been reported in patients receiving a bulk laxative product containing 82% psyllium and 18% senna (commercially available as Perdiem Overnight Relief).[Ref]


One case has been reported involving a factory worker who developed IgE-mediated asthma and rhinoconjunctivitis five months after exposure to senna.[Ref]

Hypersensitivity side effects of senna have rarely included occupational sensitization to senna.[Ref]


Metabolic side effects of docusate have included at least one case report of hypomagnesemia.[Ref]

Metabolic abnormalities reported include hypomagnesemia in one woman who took docusate chronically throughout her pregnancy. Magnesium levels returned to normal following discontinuation of docusate.[Ref]


Musculoskeletal side effects of senna have rarely included finger clubbing.[Ref]


Dermatologic side effects of docusate have included rash.[Ref]


1. "Product Information. Colace (docusate)." Roberts Pharmaceutical Corporation, Eatontown, NJ.

2. Dorr MB, Johnson RD, Jensen B, Magner D, Marbury T, Talbo GH "Pharmacokinetics of sparfloxacin in patients with renal impairment." Clin Ther 21 (1999): 1202-15

3. Helin T, Makinen-Kiljunen S "Occupational asthma and rhinoconjunctivitis caused by senna." Allergy 51 (1996): 181-4

4. Malmquist J, Ericsson B, Hulten-Nosslin MB, Jeppsson JO, Ljungberg O "Finger clubbing and aspartylglucosamine excretion in a laxative- abusing patient." Postgrad Med J 56 (1980): 862-4

5. Schindler AM "Isolated neonatal hypomagnesaemia associated with maternal overuse of stool softener" Lancet 2 (1984): 822

6. Prior J, White I "Tetany and clubbing in patient who ingested large quantities of senna [letter." Lancet 2 (1978): 947

More about Doculax (docusate / senna)

Consumer resources

Other brands
Senna S, Senna Plus, Senexon-S, Senokot S, ... +10 more

Related treatment guides

Further information

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

Some side effects may not be reported. You may report them to the FDA.