Glycerol

How does Glycerol work?

Glycerol attracts water into the gut, softening stools and relieving constipation.

Are there safety concerns?

Glycerol is safe for most adults. It may not be safe when preparations of glycerol are used which have not been reviewed for safety and efficacy by the FDA. When taken by mouth, glycerol can cause side effects including headaches, dizziness, bloating, nausea, vomiting, thirst, and diarrhea.

Glycerol may not be safe when injected intravenously (I.V. use). Red blood cells might get seriously damaged.

Do not use glycerol if:
  • You are pregnant or breast-feeding.

Dosing considerations for Glycerol.

The following doses have been studied in scientific research:

RECTAL:
  • As an adult laxative for constipation: The common dose of glycerol is a 2-3 grams in suppository form or a 5-15 mL enema. For children younger than six years old, the dose is a 1-1.7 grams as a suppository or a 2-5 mL enema.

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Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration

You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.