Display Patient Information Leafelts

How to take Movicol® and Laxido®

Date issued:  May 2015

For review:  May 2017

Ref: B-333/AC/Medicine/How to take Movical and Laxido

PDF:  How to take Movicol and Laxido [pdf] 210KB


Instruction for patients seen in the Pelvic Floor Clinic


What is Movicol and Laxido?

Movicol and Laxido are laxatives. They are similar drugs that are made by different companies and hence have different names.


How does it improve bowel control?

They contain a substance called macrogol, which passes through the body without being absorbed from the gut. It works because it keeps hold of the water it is taken with and prevents it from being absorbed. The extra water in the gut keeps the stools soft and prevents constipation. They also contain small amounts of salt to prevent dehydration and salt deprivation.


What are the risks?

You should not take Movicol or Laxido if your doctor has told you that you have:

  • An obstruction in your intestine (gut)
  • A perforated gut wall
  • Severe inflammatory bowel disease, like ulcerative colitis, Crohn’s disease or toxic megacolon.
  • An allergy to any of the ingredients


It is important that you read the leaflet provided with the medication before taking it.

If you are pregnant or breast feeding, talk to your doctor before you take Movicol or Laxido.

Movicol can interact with antiepileptic drugs. If you take these you should discuss any other medications that may be more suitable with your doctor.

The most commonly reported undesirable effects with Movicol or Laxido are mild. Sometimes people have stomach aches or rumbles, or feel bloated or sick. You may have mild diarrhoea especially when starting to take Movicol or Laxido.

If you feel weak, breathless, very thirsty, with a headache or get puffy ankles stop taking Movicol or Laxido and tell your doctor immediately. 

If any of the above are troublesome or last more than a few days, or if you experience other undesirable effects that are not listed, tell your pharmacist or doctor.


What are the benefits?

The benefits of taking Movicol or Laxido are that the passage of stools through the bowel is quicker and the stools are softer and so easier to pass. Taking Movicol or Laxido regularly prevents constipation.


What are the alternatives?

There are other medicines that have a similar effect on the bowel; these include Fybogel.


What dose do I take?

A suggested starting dose will have been discussed with you. It is usual to start with one sachet a day but some people will require a larger dose. People vary a lot in their response. It sometimes needs some experimentation to find the dose that will soften your bowels without giving you diarrhoea. It is usual to start on a low dose and build it up slowly over a few days so that you can judge how your body is responding. If you take too much Movicol or Laxido and get bad diarrhoea, stop taking it until it clears, then start again at a lower dose.


How to mix

Pour the contents into a glass of water (about 125ml or quarter of a pint). Stir well until the powder has dissolved and the solution is clear or slightly hazy, and then drink it. You must take the medicine as soon as possible after preparing it.

Please read the information leaflet that comes with the Movicol or Laxido.


Any further questions?

If you have any questions you can contact the Pelvic Floor Nurse Specialist, Monday to Friday, 9-5pm on 01752-431166.  Outside of these hours you may leave a message on this number.  We will aim to answer your query within 48hours.  Alternatively you can email your query to ann.cornelius@nhs.net

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