- Take the Pancreatitis Quiz
- Boost Digestive Health
- Digestive Distress Slideshow: Problem Foods to Avoid
- What are PEG and electrolytes?
- What are examples of PEG and electrolytes available in the United States?
- What are the side effects of PEG and electrolytes?
- What drugs interact with PEG and electrolytes?
- What formulations of PEG and electrolytes are available?
- What about taking PEG and electrolytes during pregnancy or while breastfeeding?
What are PEG and electrolytes?
PEG and electrolytes are oral solutions used prior to colonoscopy and other examinations or procedures to cleanse the intestines, in particular, the large bowel or colon. The PEG remains in the intestines where it retains water by producing an osmotic effect. This causes a watery stool, in fact, diarrhea, which rapidly cleanses the bowel within hours. Polyethylene 3350 is used in all of the formulations. Since electrolytes (sodium, potassium, etc.) are lost with diarrhea, electrolytes are added to the PEG to replace or prevent the losses. The electrolytes and their concentrations may vary from product-to-product. PEG and electrolyte containing products are mixed with water and drunk for the cleanse.
What are examples of PEG and electrolytes available in the United States?
Examples of PEG and electrolytes brand names are:
- peg/electrolyte (Colyte)
- peg/electrolyte (Gavilyte-C)
- peg/electrolyte (Golytely)
- peg/electrolyte (Nulytely)
- polyethylene glycol 3350, sodium sulfate, sodium chloride, potassium chloride, sodium ascorbate, and ascorbic acid oral solution (Moviprep)
- peg-3350, sodium chloride, sodium bicarbonate and potassium chloride for oral solution (Trilyte)
What are the side effects of PEG and electrolytes?
Side effects of PEG and electrolytes are:
What drugs interact with PEG and electrolytes?
Oral medications administered within one hour of the start of PEG and electrolytes may be flushed from the body and may not be absorbed.
What formulations of PEG and electrolytes are available?
PEG and electrolytes are available as oral powder for solution.
- Colyte, Golytely, and Gavilyte contain polyethylene glycol 3350, sodium chloride, potassium chloride, sodium bicarbonate, and sodium sulfate.
- Moviprep contains polyethylene glycol 3350, sodium sulfate, sodium chloride, potassium chloride, sodium ascorbate and ascorbic acid.
- Nulytely contains polyethylene glycol 3350, sodium chloride, sodium bicarbonate and potassium chloride.
- Trilyte contains polyethylene glycol 3350, sodium chloride, sodium bicarbonate and potassium chloride.
- Colyte, Nulytely and Trilyte are available with flavor packs.
What about taking PEG and electrolytes during pregnancy or while breastfeeding?
The FDA classifies PEG and electrolytes as pregnancy category C, which means that there is no evidence of safe and effective use of PEG and electrolytes for pregnant women. PEG and electrolytes should be given to pregnant women only if clearly needed.
It is not known whether PEG and electrolytes enter breast milk; therefore, PEG and electrolytes must be used with caution in mothers who are breastfeeding.
Latest Digestion News
Daily Health News
Polyethylene glycol (PEG) and electrolytes are oral solutions prescribed to a patient by a health-care professional prior to colonoscopy and other examinations or procedures to cleanse the intestines, the colon (the large bowel) in particular. Side effects, drug interactions, brand names, formulations, and pregnancy and breastfeeding safety information should be reviewed prior to using this product.
Multimedia: Slideshows, Images & Quizzes
Ulcerative Colitis Symptoms, Causes, and Treatment
Ulcerative Colitis is a form of inflammatory bowel disease and is slightly different than Crohn's disease. Your diet can impact...
IBS - Irritable Bowel Syndrome: Symptoms, Diet, Treatment
What is irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)? Learn about symptoms, causes, and foods that trigger IBS. Get lifestyle tips for managing...
Diverticulitis (Diverticulosis) Symptoms, Diet, Treatment
Diverticulitis (diverticulosis) is a condition in which the diverticulum or diverticula rupture in the colon causing infection....
Colon Cancer: Symptoms, Signs, Screening, Stages
Colorectal cancer (colon cancer) is the cause of many cancer deaths. Learn about the warning signs, symptoms, screening process,...
Worst Foods for Digestion
Discover which foods to avoid in order to prevent diarrhea and digestive problems. Find out which foods can trigger diarrhea and...
Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) Causes, Symptoms, Treatment
What is inflammatory bowel disease? IBD can include Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis. Learn more about testing, treatments,...
Ulcerative Colitis Quiz: Diet, Symptoms & Treatment
What is ulcerative colitis and what risks are associated with suffering over the long term? Take this Ulcerative Colitis Quiz to...
Stomach Pain Quiz: Nausea & Other Causes
Tummy Troubles? Get a better idea of what's causing the nausea, vomiting, bloating, gas, constipation, diarrhea, pain, and other...
Crohn's Disease Quiz
What causes Crohn's disease? What are the symptoms of Crohn's disease? How is Crohn's treated? Take this quiz to get the facts...
Crohn's Disease Causes, Symptoms, Diet
What is Crohn's disease? Get more information on this digestive disorder and how Crohn's can affect your diet. Learn more about...
Picture of Colon
The long, coiled, tubelike organ that removes water from digested food. See a picture of the Colon and learn more about the...
Picture of Colon
The part of the large intestine that serves to remove water from digested food and let the remaining material, solid waste called...
Picture of Diverticulitis
Diverticula can be seen via barium x-ray (barium enema). See a picture of Diverticulitis and learn more about the health topic.
Picture of Diverticulosis
Diverticulosis is a condition where a patient has diverticula in the colon. See a picture of Diverticulosis and learn more about...
Picture of Colon Cancer
Most, if not all, of these cancers develop from colonic polyps. Removal of these precancerous polyps can prevent colon cancer....
Abdominal Pain: Common Causes of Stomach Pain in Children
Abdominal pain in children can be more than just a tummy ache. What are the common causes of abdominal pain in children? Learn...
Nasal Irrigation: Natural Relief for Cold & Allergy Symptoms
Clogged sinuses and congestion bothering you? Nasal irrigation can relieve sinus symptoms associated with colds and allergies....
Related Disease Conditions
Stool Color, Changes in Color, Texture, and Form
Stool color changes can very from green, red, maroon, yellow, white, or black. Causes of changes of stool color can range from foods a person eats, medication, diseases or conditions, pregnancy, cancer, or tumors. Stool can also have texture changes such as greasy or floating stools. Stool that has a uncharacteristically foul odor may be caused by infections such as giardiasis or medical conditions.
Blood in the Stool (Rectal Bleeding, Hematochezia)
Blood in the stool or rectal bleeding (hematochezia) refers to the passage of bright red blood from the anus. Common causes include anal fissures, hemorrhoids, diverticulitis, colitis, Crohn's disease, colon and rectum polyps, and cancer. The color of the blood in the stool may provide information about the origin of the bleeding. The color of stool with blood in it may range from black, red, maroon, green yellow, gray, or white, and may be tarry, or sticky. Treatment of blood in the stool depends on the cause.
Colitis refers to inflammation of the inner lining of the colon. Symptoms of the inflammation of the colon lining include diarrhea, pain, and blood in the stool. There are several causes of colitis, including infection, ischemia of the colon, inflammatory bowel disease (Crohn's disease, ulcerative colitis, infectious colitis like C. difficile, or microscopic colitis). Treatment depends on the cause of the colitis.
Abdominal Pain (Causes, Remedies, Treatment)
Abdominal pain can have many causes that range from mild to severe. Some of these causes include bloating, gas, colitis, endometriosis, food poisoning, GERD, IBS (irritable bowel syndrome), ovarian cysts, abdominal adhesions, diverticulitis, Crohn's disease, ulcerative colitis, gallbladder disease, liver disease, and cancers. Signs and symptoms of the more serious causes include dehydration, bloody or black tarry stools, severe abdominal pain, pain with no urination or painful urination. Treatment for abdominal pain depends upon the cause.
Diarrhea (Causes, Medicine, Remedies, Treatment)
Diarrhea is a change is the frequency and looseness of bowel movements. Symptoms associated with diarrhea are cramping, abdominal pain, and the sensation of rectal urgency. Causes of diarrhea include viral, bacterial, or parasite infection, gastroenteritis, food poisoning, and drugs. Absorbents and anti-motility medications are used to treat diarrhea.
Diverticulitis (Diverticulosis, Diverticular Disease)
Most people with diverticulosis have few if any symptoms at all. When people do experience signs and symptoms of diverticulosis (diverticular disease) they may include abdominal pain, abdominal cramps, diarrhea, constipation, and bloating. Diverticulitis is a condition in which diverticuli in the colon rupture. The rupture results in infection in the tissues that surround the colon. Treatment methods for diverticulitis includes prescription medications, and in some cases, diverticulitis surgery.
Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)
Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a GI (gastrointestinal) disorder with signs and symptoms that include abdominal pain, bloating, increased gas (flatulence), abdominal cramping, diarrhea, constipation, and food intolerance.Two new tests are now available that may help diagnose irritable bowel syndrome with diarrhea and constipation (IBS-M) irritable bowel syndrome with diarrhea (IBS-D), and irritable bowel syndrome with constipation (IBS-C). Treatment for IBS includes diet changes, medications, and other lifestyle changes to manage symptoms.
Constipation (Relief, Home Remedies, Treatment Medications)
Constipation is defined medically as fewer than three stools per week and severe constipation as less than one stool per week. Constipation usually is caused by the slow movement of stool through the colon. There are many causes of constipation including medications, poor bowel habits, low fiber diets, laxative abuse, and hormonal disorders, and diseases primarily of other parts of the body that also affect the colon.
Indigestion (Dyspepsia, Upset Stomach Pain)
Indigestion (dyspepsia) can be caused by diseases or conditions that involve the gastrointestinal (GI) tract, and also by some diseases and conditions that do not involve the GI tract. Indigestion can be a chronic condition in which the symptoms fluctuate in frequency and intensity. Signs and symptoms that accompany indigestion include pain in the chest, upper abdominal pain, belching, nausea, bloating, abdominal distention, feeling full after eating only a small portion of food, and rarely, vomiting.
Colon cancer (bowel cancer) is a malignancy that arises from the inner lining of the colon. Most, if not all, of these cancers develop from colonic polyps. Removal of these precancerous polyps can prevent colon cancer.
Internal bleeding occurs when an artery or vein is damaged and blood to escapes the circulatory system and collects inside the body. Internal bleeding can be caused by a variety of situations such as blunt trauma, deceleration trauma, medications, fractures, and spontaneous bleeding. Treatment of internal bleeding depends on the cause of the bleeding.
Colon polyps are common growths on the inner lining of the colon. Colon polyps may become cancerous. There are several different types of colon polyps, and the chance of the polyp becoming cancerous depends on the type, size, and histology. Blood in the stool or rectal bleeding are the most common symptoms of colon polyps. Treatment for colon polyps depend on the type, size, and histology.
Crohn's disease is a chronic inflammatory disease, primarily involving the small and large intestine, but which can affect other parts of the digestive system as well. Abdominal pain, diarrhea, vomiting, fever, and weight loss are common symptoms.
Ulcerative colitis is a chronic inflammation of the colon. Symptoms include abdominal pain, diarrhea, and rectal bleeding. Ulcerative colitis is closely related to Crohn's disease, and together they are referred to as inflammatory bowel disease. Treatment depends upon the type of ulcerative colitis diagnosed.
Inflammatory Bowel Disease (Intestinal Problems of IBD)
The inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD) are Crohn's disease (CD) and ulcerative colitis (UC). The intestinal complications of Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis differ because of the characteristically dissimilar behaviors of the intestinal inflammation in these two diseases.
Microscopic Colitis (Lymphocytic Colitis and Collagenous Colitis)
Microscopic colitis (lymphocytic colitis and collagenous colitis) is a disease of inflammation of the colon. Microscopic colitis is only visible when the colon's lining is examined under a microscope. The cause of microscopic colitis is not known. Symptoms of microscopic colitis are chronic watery diarrhea and abdominal pain or cramps. Microscopic colitis is diagnosed through biopsies of several areas of the colon. There is no standardized treatment for microscopic colitis; however, eliminating NSAIDs, and treatment medications such as Imodium, Lomotil, Petpo-Bismol, Entocort EC, and mesalamine (Asacol) have been helpful in some individuals.
Irritable Bowel Syndrome in Children (IBS)
Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) in children is a functional gastrointestinal disorder with signs and symptoms of: Abdominal pain Bloating Diarrhea Constipation The cause of IBS is unknown, however, certain foods, stress, anxiety, and depression may contribute to the symptoms of IBS. There is no cure for IBS in children; however, medications, dietary changes, and stress management may relieve symptoms.
Melanosis coli is a condition that is often associated with prolonged laxative use. Dark pigment forms in the wall of the large intestine as a result of wear and tear. Melanosis Coli (Pseudomelanosis Coli) causes no symptoms and can be reversed with discontinuation of laxative use.
Colon Cancer Prevention
Colorectal cancer is both curable and preventable if it is detected early and completely removed before the cancerous cells metastasize to other parts of the body. Colonoscopy and flexible sigmoidoscopy (along with digital rectal examination and stool occult blood testing) are both effective at preventing colo-rectal cancers and detecting early colo-rectal cancers.
Disease Prevention in Women
Disease prevention in women includes screening tests that are a basic part of prevention medicine. All screening tests are commonly available through your general doctor. Some specialized tests may be available elsewhere.
Disease Prevention in Men
Disease prevention in men includes routine screening tests that are part of basic prevention medicine. Take an active role in your own health care and discuss screening tests with your doctor early in life. Age of screening and timing of screening depends upon the condition being assessed. Diseases men should take steps to prevent include high blood pressure (hypertension), hypercholesterolemia, type II diabetes mellitus, HIV (human immunodeficiency virus), colon cancer and colon polyps, prostate cancer, glaucoma, melanoma and other skin cancer, and bladder cancer.
Treatment & Diagnosis
Medications & Supplements
Health Solutions From Our Sponsors
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.
REFERENCE: FDA Prescribing Informaiton.