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Dulcolax is a stimulant laxative used to relieve occasional constipation and irregularity. Its active ingredient is bisacodyl, which works by increasing bowel activity to induce bowel movements. 

Last Modified: 07 May 2024

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What is Dulcolax? 

Dulcolax is a stimulant laxative used to relieve occasional constipation and irregularity. Its active ingredient is bisacodyl, which works by increasing bowel activity to induce bowel movements. 

The drug is synthesized to act directly on the colon, stimulating the mucosa and nerve plexus to promote peristalsis. Bisacodyl's molecular formula is C_22H_19NO_4. 


Global Name

Generic name:  Bisacodyl
Brand names: Dulcolax, Correctol, Bisacodyl, Alophen, Carter's Little Pills


What is Dulcolax used for? 

Dulcolax is used to treat: 

  • Constipation. 
  • Conditions that require facilitation of bowel movement or bowel preparation, such as before radiological procedures or surgery. 

How do you use Dulcolax? 


Dulcolax is available in tablet form, suppositories, and enema solutions. 

Dosage information:

  • Adults and Children over 12 years: 1 to 3 tablets (5-15 mg) orally once daily or 1 suppository (10 mg) once daily. 
  • Children 6 to 12 years: 1 tablet (5 mg) orally once daily or 1 pediatric suppository (5 mg) once daily. 
  • Children under 6 years: Consult a healthcare provider. 


  • Children: Yes, with adjusted dosage for age. 
  • Adults: Yes. 
  • Elderlies: Yes, but with caution due to possible reduced tolerance.

Is there anyone who can’t take Dulcolax? 

  • Children: Not recommended for children under 6 years without advice from a healthcare provider. 
  • Adults: Those with ileus, intestinal obstruction, acute surgical abdominal conditions, severe dehydration, or hypersensitivity to bisacodyl. 
  • Elderlies: Use with caution; adjust dosage if necessary. 
  • Pregnancy: Consult a healthcare provider before use. 
  • Lactation: Consult a healthcare provider before use. 
  • Allergies: Avoid if allergic to bisacodyl or any other components of Dulcolax. 

Any warnings and precautions : 

Chronic use may lead to dependency or loss of normal bowel function. Use as directed for short-term only. Dulcolax should be taken with water on an empty stomach, usually at bedtime. 

Drug Interactions: 

Avoid antacids or milk within 1 hour of taking Dulcolax tablets, as they can cause premature dissolution. Contraindicated for gastrointestinal conditions like partial/complete obstruction, ileus, intussusception, and suspected acute surgical abdomen.

Side Effects

Common side effects include abdominal cramps, nausea, and diarrhea. Prolonged use can lead to electrolyte imbalance and dehydration. 

Pharmacist Tips

  • Storage information: Store at room temperature, protect from excessive heat and moisture. 
  • Handling instructions: Do not crush, chew, or break the tablets; swallow them whole. For suppositories, follow instructions for proper insertion.


Where is Dulcolax available in Hong Kong?

Dulcolax is an over the counter (OTC) medication that can be sold without a prescription. It is found in all chain drug stores, including Mannings and Watsons.



How long does it take for Dulcolax to work?  

Tablets usually take 6 to 12 hours, and suppositories work within 15 to 60 minutes. 

Can Dulcolax be used for weight loss? 

Dulcolax is not intended for weight loss and should only be used as directed for constipation.  

Is it safe to use Dulcolax frequently?

Frequent or prolonged use may lead to dependence and worsen constipation. Consult a healthcare provider if frequent use is necessary. 

Can I take Dulcolax during the day?   

Yes, but it is typically taken at bedtime to work overnight. If taken during the day, ensure access to a restroom. 

This website provides content related to drug use and medicine for informational purposes only. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Do not use the information on this website to diagnose or treat a health problem or disease without consulting a qualified healthcare provider. The website's owners and contributors are not liable for any repercussions, adverse effects, or consequences resulting from the use of any medication or information provided herein.

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