Directly go to the content
Movicol

Movicol

Movicol is a type of laxative that’s available in a range of different forums, including powder sachets, liquids, and ready-to-drink packets. The sachets and liquid version of this medication contain something called Polyethylene Glycol, which is an osmotic laxative. Movicol also contains something called Sodium bicarbonate, as well as sodium chloride and potassium chloride.   This medication works by passing through the gut without being fully absorbed into your body. The medicine works by causing water to be retained by the bowel, while increasing the water content of the stools, allowing them to pass more easily. Movicol can also stimulate the muscles in the walls of the bowel to push the stools out of the body.   The combination of sodium chloride, sodium bicarbonate, and potassium chloride contained within Movicol also ensure that this medication doesn’t cause the body to lose or gain significant amounts of potassium, water or sodium. Movicol will not cause you to immediately evacuate your bowels. It can often take one or two days before this medication will work.  

Movicol is a type of medicine called a laxative, used to treat chronic and acute constipation in children and adults aged from 12 years. You can order this medication online to be delivered to registered EU pharmacies.  

What is Movicol? 

Movicol is a type of laxative that’s available in a range of different forums, including powder sachets, liquids, and ready-to-drink packets. The sachets and liquid version of this medication contain something called Polyethylene Glycol, which is an osmotic laxative. Movicol also contains something called Sodium bicarbonate, as well as sodium chloride and potassium chloride.  

This medication works by passing through the gut without being fully absorbed into your body. The medicine works by causing water to be retained by the bowel, while increasing the water content of the stools, allowing them to pass more easily. Movicol can also stimulate the muscles in the walls of the bowel to push the stools out of the body.  

The combination of sodium chloride, sodium bicarbonate, and potassium chloride contained within Movicol also ensure that this medication doesn’t cause the body to lose or gain significant amounts of potassium, water or sodium. Movicol will not cause you to immediately evacuate your bowels. It can often take one or two days before this medication will work.  

When is Movicol used? 

Movicol is available to buy from most pharmacies, and it can also be prescribed by a doctor. This medication contains a number of active ingredients, including Macrogol, or polyethylene glycol, potassium chloride, sodium chloride, and sodium bicarbonate.  

Movicol is available in the form of powders, ready-to-use sachets, liquids, and other substances. The most common reason to use this medication is to help relieve constipation in people who have been unable to have a bowel movement for a significant period of time. This medication can also be used to relieve issues with more severe constipation called fecal impaction, where there is a build-up of hardened stool in the body.  

Movicol should be taken with caution, as with all laxatives. It is important to make sure that you are getting plenty of water into your system when taking this medication.  

How do you use Movicol? 

Before starting your new dose of Movicol, make sure that you pay attention to your consultant or doctor’s instructions. You will be given a patient leaflet with this medication that will show you how to use the substance that you get. Crucially, the way that you take Movicol will depend on the version of the medication that you are using. For instance, if you are using the sachets of Movicol granules, then you will need to dissolve the contents of the sachets in around 125 ml of water before taking it.  

If you are using the ready-to-take sachets of Movicol, then you can simply drink the medicine straight from the sachet without having to dilute it. However, it is important to still make sure that you are drinking plenty of fluids throughout the course of the day.  

Your consultant may recommend taking Movicol for up to two weeks to deal with issues of chronic constipation. If you need to take the medicine for longer than this, then you might need to get further advice from a doctor. In some cases, you may be advised to take Movicol at a lower than usual dose on a regular basis if you have constipation caused by a chronic or long-term disease, or if you are taking medications that might cause constipation.  

If you do not notice any changes in your situation a few days after you start taking Movicol, then you will need to speak to a doctor about alternative forms of treatment.  

What dosages are there? 

You will be prescribed a dosage of Movicol based on a number of factors, including the nature of your condition, and the way that you have responded to previous forms of treatment. The dosage that you are given may also differ depending on the type of Movicol that you are using.The usual dose is one sachette 2 or 3 times a day, however higher doses are needed in the case of faecal impaction. You will need to take this dose with water. Do not drink more than 250ml of the solution within an hour if you have a heart condition.  

If you are using the half-sachet versions of Movicol, then you will be able to take two sachets three times per day, depending on how bad your condition is.  

If you are using the ready-to-drink sachets of Movicol, then you can take two sachets three times a day to treat constipation, depending on how bad your condition is.   

The liquid version of Movicol is often taken in doses of 25ml diluted in 100ml of water. You can take this dose up to 3 times a day to treat constipation. You would not be able to use the liquid to treat fecal impaction issues.  

It is always important to discuss this with your doctor who can advise on the correct dose for you and exclude any underlying conditions. 

What are the side effects of Movicol? 

Although Movicol is often well-tolerated by many people, all medicines can have possible side effects. The way that you respond to this medication will depend on your medical history and background. Medicines and their possible side effects can affect individuals in different ways. The following are some of the side effects most commonly associated with Movicol: 

  • Sickness or vomiting; 
  • Abdominal pain or cramping; 
  • Pain or swelling of the abdomen; 
  • Abdominal rumbling or gurgling; 
  • Wind or trapped flatulence; 
  • Diarrhea; 
  • Anal discomfort; 
  • Headaches. 

Some people who take Movicol experience sudden disturbances in the number of electrolytes that they have in the blood. This is particularly common with issues surrounding the amount of potassium you have in your blood. You will need to stop taking Movicol immediately and consult with your doctor if you begin to feel fatigued, breathless, weak, or very thirsty when using this medication. Sometimes these symptoms could be a sign that your electrolyte and fluid levels have been disturbed and your doctor may need to conduct a test to check this.  

A severe allergic reaction to a medication like Movicol is very rare. However, if you ever notice a sign of any allergic reaction when taking a medication, you should seek emergency medical attention. Allergic reaction symptoms may include things like swelling around the tongue, mouth and throat, or trouble breathing. You may also feel dizzy after taking Movicol, severe dizziness could be a sign of an allergic reaction.  

When shouldn't you use Movicol? 

Not everyone will be able to safely take Movicol. You will need to answer questions about your current condition and medical history when having your consultation for this medication. Make sure that you provide answers truthfully to each question to ensure that you are getting the medication that is most suitable for you. It may be dangerous to take Movicol in some cases.  

If you have ever had a hole or blockage in your gut for any reason, then it is important that you do not take Movicol. Your chances of dangerous side effects could be very high in these circumstances, particularly if you have a blockage in your gut that has been caused by a disorder in the gut wall.  

It may not be a good idea to take Movicol if you have some form of inflammatory bowel disease, including toxic megacolon, ulcerative colitis, and Crohn’s disease. Make sure that your doctor knows if you have every had any allergic reactions to any medications similar to Movicol too. This medicine should not be used by anyone who has an allergy to the inactive or active ingredients.  

Movicol is not safe to use for children under the age of 12. There is a pediatric version of the medicine available for treating children. Movicol can sometimes be used safely during pregnancy, as the active medications in this substance will not be absorbed into the bloodstream. You should ask your doctor about taking Movicol if you are breastfeeding. Most of the time, it will be safe to take Movicol when breastfeeding, because the substance is not absorbed into the bloodstream, and therefore should not affect your child.  

Does Movicol interact with any other medications? 

Movicol is not currently known to interact with other medications. However, it’s worth noting that larger volumes of fluid can sometimes flush capsules and tablets out of the gut without them having a chance to be fully absorbed into your system. If you are taking a large amount of Movicol at once, perhaps to deal with the issue of fecal impaction, then you will need to avoid using other capsules or tablets when you are taking this medication. 

To make sure that you don’t encounter any issues with interactions caused by this medication, it is important to tell your consultant about any medications that you are already taking. This includes substances that you may have purchased over the counter, as well as substances that you have purchased that are herbal or supplemental in nature.  

Where can you buy Movicol? 

Movicol is available to purchase over the counter and from regulated pharmacies in your location. We can arrange for consultations to be conducted with an EU professional on your behalf, and then have an order of this medication sent to the corresponding pharmacy for you.  

Can you get Movicol without a prescription?  

Movicol may be available without prescription in some locations depending on the treatment required. Speak to your consultant about your options.  

Sources 

BNF Nice, online, 2019, “MACROGOL 3350 WITH POTASSIUM CHLORIDE, SODIUM BICARBONATE AND SODIUM CHLORIDE”[Accessed 20th of November 2019] Available on: https://bnf.nice.org.uk/drug/macrogol-3350-with-potassium-chloride-sodium-bicarbonate-and-sodium-chloride.html 

Drugs.com, online 2019, “Movicol” [Accessed 20th of November 2019] Available on: https://www.drugs.com/uk/movicol-leaflet.html

Medicines.org.uk online, 2019 “Movicol 13.8g sachet, powder for oral solution” [Accessed 20th of November 2019] Available on: https://www.medicines.org.uk/emc/product/1025/smpc