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Phillips' Milk of Magnesia
How does this medication work? What will it do for me?
Magnesium hydroxide belongs to two groups of medications: laxatives and antacids. It is used to relieve occasional constipation and also to relieve symptoms caused by heartburn, upset stomach, or indigestion.
For constipation, magnesium hydroxide works by increasing the water content and volume of stool, which helps produce a bowel movement. For heartburn, it works by neutralizing stomach acid.
Your doctor may have suggested this medication for conditions other than the ones listed in these drug information articles. As well, some forms of this medication may not be used for all of the conditions discussed here. If you have not discussed this with your doctor or are not sure why you are taking this medication, speak to your doctor.
Do not give this medication to anyone else, even if they have the same symptoms as you do. It can be harmful for people to take this medication if their doctor or pharmacist has not recommended it.
What form(s) does this medication come in?
Each chewable tablet contains 311 mg of magnesium hydroxide. Nonmedicinal ingredients: dextrates, magnesium stearate, peppermint oil, silicon dioxide, starch, sucrose, and maltodextrin.
Each mL of suspension contains 80 mg of magnesium hydroxide. Nonmedicinal ingredients: carboxymethylcellulose, cherry flavour (cherry only), citric acid, D&C Red No. 28 (cherry only), ethanol, glycerin, menthol, microcrystalline cellulose, mineral oil, peppermint flavouring (mint only), sodium saccharin, sodium citrate, sodium hypochlorite, sucrose, water, and xanthan gum.
How should I use this medication?
- For adults, the recommended dose is 6 to 8 chewable tablets per day or 30 mL to 60 mL of oral suspension
- For children aged 6 to 11 years old, the usual dose is 3 to 6 chewable tablets per day or 15 mL to 30 mL of oral suspension
- For children 2 to 5 years of age, the usual dose is 1 to 3 chewable tablets per day or 5 mL to 15 mL of oral suspension
- Talk to your doctor before giving this medication to children under 2 years of age
For heartburn, the recommended dose for adults is 2 to 4 chewable tablets or 5 mL to 15 mL of oral suspension up to 4 times a day.
Shake the suspension well before taking it.
Many things can affect the dose of medication that a person needs, such as body weight, other medical conditions, and other medications. If your doctor or pharmacist has recommended a dose different from the ones above, do not change the way that you are taking the medication without consulting your doctor.
It is important to use this medication exactly as recommended by your doctor or pharmacist.
Store this medication at room temperature and keep it out of the reach of children.
This medication is available under multiple brand names and/or in several different forms. Any specific brand name of this medication may not be available in all of the forms listed here. The forms available for the specific brand you have searched are listed under "What form(s) does this medication come in?"
Do not dispose of medications in wastewater (e.g. down the sink or in the toilet) or in household garbage. Ask your pharmacist how to dispose of medications that are no longer needed or have expired.
Who should NOT take this medication?
Magnesium hydroxide should not be taken by anyone who:
- is allergic to magnesium hydroxide or to any of the ingredients of the medication
- has abdominal pain, nausea, or vomiting
- has seriously reduced kidney function
What side effects are possible with this medication?
Stop taking the medication and seek immediate medical attention if any of the following occur:
- symptoms of a severe allergic reaction (e.g., hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of the mouth, tongue, face, or throat)
Some people may experience side effects other than those listed. Check with your doctor if you notice any symptom that worries you while you are taking this medication.
Are there any other precautions or warnings for this medication?
Before you begin using a medication, be sure to inform your doctor of any medical conditions or allergies you may have, any medications you are taking, whether you are pregnant or breast-feeding, and any other significant facts about your health. These factors may affect how you should use this medication.
Fever, nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain or bloating: If you have any of these symptoms, don't take this medication until you talk to your doctor.
Kidney disease: If you have kidney disease, contact your doctor before taking this medication.
Long-term use: This medication should not be taken daily for more than one week. Long-term use can make your bowels dependent on this medication to function. If you experience constipation for more than one week, contact your doctor.
Rectal bleeding or lack of bowel movement: If you experience rectal bleeding or do not have a bowel movement after using this medication, contact your doctor. These symptoms may mean you have a more serious condition.
Sudden change in bowel habits: If you've noticed a sudden, persistent change in your bowel habits over the last 2 weeks, talk to your doctor before taking this medication.
What other drugs could interact with this medication?
Do not take other medications 2 hours before or 2 hours after taking magnesium hydroxide. Magnesium hydroxide may reduce the effectiveness of other medications.
Medications other than those listed above may interact with this medication. Tell your doctor or prescriber about all prescription, over-the-counter (non-prescription), and herbal medications you are taking. Also tell them about any supplements you take. Since caffeine, alcohol, the nicotine from cigarettes, or street drugs can affect the action of many medications, you should let your prescriber know if you use them.
All material © 1996-2013 MediResource Inc. Terms and conditions of use. The contents herein are for informational purposes only. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.
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