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Generlac (Generic Lactulose)

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Why is this medication prescribed?

Generlac is a brand name for lactulose, a synthetic sugar solution used as a laxative. It is primarily prescribed for the treatment of constipation and to soften stools, especially in individuals with chronic constipation or conditions such as hepatic encephalopathy.

  • Constipation: Generlac works by drawing water into the colon, softening stools and making them easier to pass. It also stimulates bowel movements.
  • Hepatic Encephalopathy: In cases of hepatic encephalopathy, a condition where the liver is unable to remove toxins from the blood effectively, lactulose helps by promoting the excretion of ammonia in the stools, thereby reducing ammonia levels in the blood.

How should this medicine be used?

Generlac is typically used orally and can be taken with or without food. The dosage and frequency of use depend on the individual’s condition and response to treatment. It is important to follow the dosage instructions provided by the prescribing healthcare professional. Generally:

  • For constipation: The usual starting dose for adults is 15 to 30 milliliters (mL) once a day, which can be adjusted as needed.
  • For hepatic encephalopathy: The dosage is typically higher and may require several doses throughout the day. The healthcare provider will determine the appropriate dosage based on the severity of the condition.

It’s important to drink plenty of fluids while taking Generlac to prevent dehydration. If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you remember, but do not double the dose to catch up.

Always consult with a healthcare professional for proper diagnosis, dosage, and usage instructions tailored to your specific medical condition.

What special precautions should I follow?

When using Generlac (lactulose), it’s essential to take certain precautions to ensure safe and effective use:

  • Fluid Intake: Ensure an adequate intake of fluids while taking Generlac to prevent dehydration. Lactulose works by drawing water into the colon, so maintaining hydration is crucial.
  • Monitoring: For individuals with hepatic encephalopathy, it’s important to monitor blood ammonia levels regularly to assess the effectiveness of treatment with lactulose.
  • Dose Adjustment: Dosage adjustments may be necessary for individuals with impaired kidney function or electrolyte imbalances. Consult with a healthcare professional for appropriate dosing recommendations.
  • Potential Side Effects: Be aware of potential side effects of lactulose, such as abdominal cramping, bloating, flatulence, and diarrhea. These side effects are usually mild and transient but should be reported to a healthcare provider if they persist or worsen.
  • Avoid Overuse: Avoid excessive use of lactulose, as it may lead to electrolyte imbalances or dependence on laxatives for bowel movements. Follow the prescribed dosage and usage instructions provided by your healthcare provider.

Always consult with a healthcare professional for guidance on the appropriate use of Generlac (lactulose) and to discuss any specific precautions or considerations based on your medical history and individual circumstances.

What special dietary instructions should I follow?

Special Dietary Instructions:

  • Fiber-Rich Diet: Consuming a diet rich in fiber can help complement the effects of Generlac and promote regular bowel movements. Include fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and legumes in your diet.
  • Hydration: Along with Generlac, ensure you’re drinking enough fluids, particularly water. Proper hydration can help soften stools and aid in bowel movements.
  • Limit Alcohol and Caffeine: Alcohol and caffeine can contribute to dehydration and may exacerbate constipation. Limiting their intake may help improve bowel function.

What should I do if I forget a dose?

If you forget to take a dose of Generlac, take it as soon as you remember. However, if it’s almost time for your next scheduled dose, skip the missed dose and continue with your regular dosing schedule. Do not double the dose to make up for the missed one, as this can increase the risk of side effects.

What side effects can this medication cause?

Generlac (lactulose) is generally well-tolerated, but like any medication, it can cause side effects in some individuals. Common side effects of Generlac may include:

  • Abdominal discomfort: This may manifest as cramping, bloating, or mild abdominal pain. These symptoms typically resolve on their own or with a reduction in dosage.
  • Flatulence (gas): Increased gas production is a common side effect of lactulose. It usually diminishes over time as your body adjusts to the medication.
  • Diarrhea: In some cases, Generlac may cause loose stools or diarrhea, especially when initially starting treatment or with higher doses. If diarrhea persists or becomes severe, consult your healthcare provider.
  • Nausea and vomiting: Some individuals may experience nausea or vomiting while taking Generlac. If these symptoms are severe or persistent, seek medical advice.
  • Electrolyte imbalance: Prolonged use of lactulose may lead to electrolyte imbalances, particularly if dehydration occurs. Symptoms of electrolyte imbalance include weakness, fatigue, muscle cramps, and irregular heartbeat.
  • Dehydration: Since Generlac draws water into the colon, inadequate fluid intake can lead to dehydration, especially in older adults or individuals with certain medical conditions.
  • Hypoglycemia (low blood sugar): In diabetic patients, lactulose may affect blood sugar levels and potentially cause hypoglycemia. Monitor blood sugar levels closely and consult with your healthcare provider if you experience symptoms of low blood sugar.
  • Allergic reactions: Although rare, some individuals may experience allergic reactions to lactulose, characterized by symptoms such as rash, itching, swelling, or difficulty breathing. Seek immediate medical attention if you experience any signs of an allergic reaction.

It’s essential to discuss any side effects or concerns with your healthcare provider. They can provide guidance on managing side effects and may adjust your dosage or recommend alternative treatments if necessary. Additionally, if you experience severe or persistent side effects, seek medical attention promptly.

What should I know about storage and disposal of this medication?

When it comes to storage and disposal of Generlac, here are some important points to consider:


  • Room Temperature: Store Generlac at room temperature away from light and moisture. Avoid storing it in the bathroom or near heat sources.
  • Keep Out of Reach of Children: Store Generlac in a safe place out of reach of children and pets, as accidental ingestion can be harmful.
  • Do Not Freeze: Do not freeze Generlac, as freezing may alter its effectiveness.


  • Dispose of Unused Medication Properly: If you have unused or expired Generlac, it’s important to dispose of it properly to prevent accidental ingestion. Follow local regulations or guidelines for medication disposal, such as using a medication take-back program or returning it to a pharmacy.
  • Do Not Flush: Do not flush Generlac down the toilet unless instructed to do so by a healthcare professional or local waste management authorities.

In case of emergency/overdose

  • Seek Medical Attention: In case of an overdose or if you suspect someone has ingested an excessive amount of Generlac, seek immediate medical attention or contact a poison control center. Symptoms of overdose may include severe diarrhea, dehydration, electrolyte imbalances, and changes in mental status.
  • Treatment: Treatment for Generlac overdose may involve supportive care to address dehydration, electrolyte imbalances, and other symptoms. Medical professionals may administer fluids, electrolytes, and other medications as needed.

What other information should I know?

  • Medical History: Inform your healthcare provider about any medical conditions you have, especially kidney problems, electrolyte imbalances, diabetes, or gastrointestinal disorders, as they may affect your response to Generlac.
  • Other Medications: Inform your healthcare provider about all the medications, supplements, and herbal products you are taking, as they may interact with Generlac. This includes prescription and over-the-counter medications.
  • Follow-up: Attend follow-up appointments with your healthcare provider as scheduled to monitor your response to Generlac and adjust treatment as necessary.
  • Avoid Alcohol: Avoid excessive alcohol consumption while taking Generlac, as it may exacerbate certain side effects such as dehydration and electrolyte imbalances.

Always follow your healthcare provider’s instructions regarding the use of Generlac, including dosage, administration, and precautions. If you have any questions or concerns, don’t hesitate to discuss them with your healthcare provider or pharmacist.

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