What is this medication?
BISACODYL (bis a KOE dill) is a laxative. This medicine is used to relieve constipation. It may also be used to empty and prepare the bowel for surgery or examination.
This medicine may be used for other purposes; ask your health care provider or pharmacist if you have questions.
COMMON BRAND NAME(S): Bisac-Evac, Biscolax, Dulcolax, Laxative
What should I tell my care team before I take this medication?
They need to know if you have any of these conditions
•stomach pain or blockage
•ulcerative colitis or other bowel disease
•an unusual or allergic reaction to bisacodyl, other medicines, foods, dyes, or preservatives
•pregnant or trying to get pregnant
How should I use this medication?
This medicine is for rectal use only. Do not take by mouth. Wash your hands before and after use. Take off the foil wrapping. Wet the tip of the suppository with cold tap water to make it easier to use. Lie on your side and raise your knee to your chest. Using your finger push the suppository, with the pointed end first, into the rectum. Try and keep the suppository in your rectum for 15 to 20 minutes. If you feel it must come out at once, it was not inserted high enough and should be pushed higher. Do not use this medicine more often than directed by your doctor or health care professional.
Talk to your pediatrician regarding the use of this medicine in children. While this medicine may be used in children as young as 6 years for selected conditions, precautions do apply.
Overdosage: If you think you have taken too much of this medicine contact a poison control center or emergency room at once.
NOTE: This medicine is only for you. Do not share this medicine with others.
What if I miss a dose?
This does not apply. This medicine is not for regular use, and should only be used as needed.
What may interact with this medication?
Interactions are not expected.
This list may not describe all possible interactions. Give your health care provider a list of all the medicines, herbs, non-prescription drugs, or dietary supplements you use. Also tell them if you smoke, drink alcohol, or use illegal drugs. Some items may interact with your medicine.
What should I watch for while using this medication?
Do not use this medicine for longer than directed by your doctor or health care professional. This medicine can be habit-forming. Long-term use can make your body depend on the laxative for regular bowel movements, damage the bowel, cause malnutrition, and problems with the amounts of water and salts in your body. If your constipation keeps returning, check with your doctor or health care professional.
If the suppository seems soft, hold it inside the foil wrapper under cold water for one or two minutes.
If you do not have a bowel movement within 12 hours after using this medicine or you experience rectal bleeding, contact your doctor or health care professional. These may be signs of a more serious condition.
What side effects may I notice from receiving this medication?
Side effects that you should report to your doctor or health care professional as soon as possible:
•unusual weight loss
Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (report to your doctor or health care professional if they continue or are bothersome):
•lower stomach discomfort or cramps
•rectal itching, burning, or swelling
This list may not describe all possible side effects. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
Where should I keep my medication?
Keep out of the reach of children.
Store at room temperature below 25 degrees C (77 degrees F). Throw away any unused medicine after the expiration date.
NOTE: This sheet is a summary. It may not cover all possible information. If you have questions about this medicine, talk to your doctor, pharmacist, or health care provider.
Cleveland Clinic is a non-profit academic medical center. Advertising on our site helps support our mission. We do not endorse non-Cleveland Clinic products or services. Policy