ClearLax is a common brand of polyethylene glycol 3350, a laxative solution that increases the amount of water in the intestinal tract to stimulate bowel movements. ClearLax is used as a laxative to treat occasional constipation or irregular bowel movements. It is also used for cleansing the colon in preparation for colonoscopy in adults.
Polyethylene glycol 3350 has a long history of gastroenterology. Its potent water-binding capacity, negligible intestinal absorption with increasing molecular mass, lack of significant toxicity, and limited intestinal enzymatic degradation or bacterial metabolism all make polyethylene glycol a useful therapeutic agent for the treatment of occasional constipation and bowel cleansing for preparation in colonoscopy.
How does ClearLax work?
Basically, osmotic agents, such as polyethylene glycol found in ClearLax, work naturally with the water in the colon to unblock a person’s system. Soluble, non-absorbable PEG 3350 hydrates, softens, and eases stools by gently attracting water in the colon through a process known as osmosis. The water increases stool volume and stretches the wall of the bowel, triggering the defecation reflex so the digestive system can be unblocked naturally.
How to Use ClearLax?
Use ClearLax exactly as directed on the label, or as prescribed by your doctor. Do not use in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended. Follow all directions on your prescription label. Do not use this medicine in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended.
To use the powder form of this medicine, measure your dose with the medicine cap on the bottle. This cap should contain dose marks on the inside of it. Pour the powder into 4 to 8 ounces of a cold or hot beverage such as water, juice, soda, coffee, or tea. Stir this mixture and drink it right away. Do not save for later use.
Do not use polyethylene glycol 3350 more than once per day. Call your doctor if you are still constipated or irregular after using this medication for 7 days in a row.
How will I feel after taking ClearLax?
Osmotic laxatives, such as ClearLax, are generally well-tolerated and have very few side effects. Studies have shown that ClearLax increases bowel movement frequency with less straining and improves stool consistency. If gastrointestinal side effects do occur, they are usually mild and transient.
How long does it take for ClearLax to work?
ClearLax should start working within one to four days after commencement of treatment. Osmotic laxatives like ClearLax contain substances that are poorly absorbable and draw water into the lumen of the bowel. Polyethylene glycol functions as an osmotic laxative that causes increased water retention in the lumen of the colon by binding to water molecules, thereby producing loose stools. Because it works naturally with the water in your body without causing harsh side effects, you do not need to worry about sudden urgency.
What happens if I miss a dose?
Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. Skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next scheduled dose. Do not take extra medicine to make up for the missed dose.
What happens if I overdose?
Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222.
What should I avoid?
Follow your doctor’s instructions about any restrictions on food, beverages, or activity.
ClearLax side effects
Get emergency medical help if you have any signs of an allergic reaction to ClearLax: hives; difficult breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.
Stop taking this medicine and call your doctor at once if you have:
• severe or bloody diarrhea;
• rectal bleeding;
• blood in your stools; or
• severe and worsening stomach pain.
Common ClearLax side effects may include:
• bloating, gas, upset stomach;
• dizziness; or
• increased sweating.
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.
What other drugs will affect ClearLax?
Other drugs may interact with ClearLax, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Tell each of your health care providers about all medicines you use now and any medicine you start or stop using.