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 Crohns Disease: Medications : Loperamide
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Loperamide

Generic Name: loperamide (oral) (low PEAR ah mide)
Brand Names: Imodium, Imodium A-D, Imotil, Kaopectate Caplet, Maalox Anti-Diarrheal

What is the most important information I should know about loperamide?

  • For acute diarrhea, notify your doctor if your symptoms do not improve within 2 days, if you develop a fever, or if you notice blood or mucus in the stool. If loperamide is being used to treat chronic diarrhea, contact your doctor if there is no improvement after 10 days.
  • Use caution when driving, operating machinery, or performing other hazardous activities. Loperamide may cause dizziness or drowsiness. If you experience dizziness or drowsiness, avoid these activities.

    What is loperamide?

  • Loperamide slows the rate at which the stomach and intestines move. It also increases the density of stools and reduces the amount of fluid in the stool.
  • Loperamide is used for symptomatic relief of acute and chronic diarrhea. Loperamide is also used to reduce the amount of stool from an ileostomy (surgical diversion of the bowel).
  • Loperamide may also be used for purposes other than those listed in this medication guide.

    What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before taking loperamide?

  • Before taking loperamide, tell your doctor if you
    • have a condition that could be complicated by constipation,
    • have ulcerative colitis,
    • have liver disease,
    • have blood or mucus in the stool,
    • have a fever of 101 degrees Fahrenheit or higher, or
    • are taking an antibiotic.
  • You may not be able to take loperamide, or you may require a dosage adjustment or special monitoring during treatment.
  • Loperamide is in the FDA pregnancy category B. This means that loperamide is not expected to harm an unborn baby. Do not take loperamide without first talking to your doctor if you are pregnant.
  • It is not known whether loperamide passes into breast milk. Do not take loperamide without first talking to your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.
  • Loperamide should not be used to treat a child younger than 2 years of age, except under the direction of a doctor.

    How should I take loperamide?

  • Take loperamide exactly as directed by your doctor or follow the package directions. If you do not understand these directions, ask your pharmacist, nurse, or doctor to explain them to you.
  • Take each dose with a full glass of water. Drink plenty of fluid to prevent dehydration for as long as the diarrhea continues.
  • To ensure that you get a correct dose, measure the liquid form of loperamide with the plastic dropper provided or with a special dose-measuring spoon or cup, not with a regular table spoon. If you do not have a dose-measuring device, ask your pharmacist where you can get one.
  • Do not take more of this medication than is prescribed for you. Talk to your doctor if your symptoms are not being controlled.
  • For acute diarrhea, notify your doctor if your symptoms do not improve within 2 days, if you develop a fever, or if you notice blood or mucus in the stool. If loperamide is being used to treat chronic diarrhea, contact your doctor if there is no improvement after 10 days.
  • Store loperamide at room temperature away from moisture and heat.

    What happens if I miss a dose?

  • If loperamide is being taken as needed to control diarrhea, missing a dose is not a problem. If loperamide is being taken on a regular schedule and a dose is missed, take the missed dose as soon as you remember. However, if it is almost time for the next dose, skip the missed dose and take only the next regularly scheduled dose. Do not take a double dose of this medication.

    What happens if I overdose?

  • Seek emergency medical attention.
  • Symptoms of a loperamide overdose may include headache; nausea; vomiting; dry mouth; dizziness; drowsiness; or confusion.

    What should I avoid while taking loperamide?

  • Use caution when driving, operating machinery, or performing other hazardous activities. Loperamide may cause dizziness or drowsiness. If you experience dizziness or drowsiness, avoid these activities.

    What are the possible side effects of loperamide?

  • If you experience any of the following serious side effects, stop taking loperamide and seek emergency medical attention or contact your doctor immediately:
    • an allergic reaction (difficulty breathing; closing of your throat; swelling of your lips, tongue, or face; or hives);
    • development of a fever;
    • persistent diarrhea (longer than 2 days); or
    • blood or mucus in the stool.
  • Other, less serious side effects may be more likely to occur. Continue to take loperamide and talk to your doctor if you experience
    • abdominal pain, distention, or discomfort;
    • nausea or vomiting;
    • constipation;
    • tiredness;
    • drowsiness or dizziness; or
    • dry mouth.
  • Side effects other than those listed here may also occur. Talk to your doctor about any side effect that seems unusual or that is especially bothersome.

    What other drugs will affect loperamide?

  • It is not known whether loperamide will interact with other medicines. Talk to your doctor and pharmacist before taking any other prescription or over-the-counter medicines.

    Other side effects not listed above may also occur in some patients. If you notice any other effects, check with your doctor. This information is meant only as a guideline - always consult a physician or pharmacist for complete information about prescription medications.

    On behalf of learning, and use as teaching tools for those of us who need to know about our disease, I have tried to supply you with as much information as I could find on all of the drugs, treatments and disorders associated with Inflammatory Bowel Diseases. I have tried to blend all facts supported by research and also from personal experiences of other IBD sufferers into one readable webpage, and any and all information presented here is not entirely from one source. Most information contained within these pages is found in the public domain. At times you may find information used from another site, and as with all copyrighted materials you may find on these pages, I claim fair use under sections 107 through 118 of the Copyright Act (title 17, U.S. Code). Click here for more info

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