bismuth subsalicylate (Pepto Bismol, Kaopectate, Bismatrol Maximum Strength, and others)

  • Pharmacy Author:
    Omudhome Ogbru, PharmD

    Dr. Ogbru received his Doctorate in Pharmacy from the University of the Pacific School of Pharmacy in 1995. He completed a Pharmacy Practice Residency at the University of Arizona/University Medical Center in 1996. He was a Professor of Pharmacy Practice and a Regional Clerkship Coordinator for the University of the Pacific School of Pharmacy from 1996-99.

  • Medical and Pharmacy Editor: Jay W. Marks, MD
    Jay W. Marks, MD

    Jay W. Marks, MD

    Jay W. Marks, MD, is a board-certified internist and gastroenterologist. He graduated from Yale University School of Medicine and trained in internal medicine and gastroenterology at UCLA/Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles.

Is bismuth subsalicylate-oral safe to take if I'm pregnant or breastfeeding?

Bismuth subsalicylate is known to cross the placenta following oral administration. Use of salicylates during pregnancy has been associated with adverse effects in the fetus. Therefore use of bismuth subsalicylate during pregnancy should be avoided. Bismuth subsalicylate is classified as FDA pregnancy risk category C (adverse effects in animals but inadequate human data).

Salicylates are excreted into human milk and can cause harm to the nursing infant. Bismuth subsalicylate is thought to be harmful to the nursing infant and should be avoided during breastfeeding.

What else should I know about bismuth subsalicylate-oral?

What preparations of bismuth subsalicylate-oral are available?

  • Chewable tablets: 262, 525 mg
  • Oral suspension: 262 mg/15 ml, maximum strength 525 mg/15 ml
  • Caplets: 262 mg

How should I keep bismuth subsalicylate-oral stored?

Bismuth subsalicylate products should be stored at room temperature, between 59 F to 86 F (15 C to 30 C).

REFERENCE: FDA Prescribing Information.

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