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  • US Name:


  • Generic Names:

    Pico Salax

  • Active Ingredients:

    Picosulfate sodium, Magnesium oxide, and Citric acid

  • Brand Manufacturer:


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Pico-Salax is a purgative used in preparation for colonoscopy. It is safe for children over the age of one.

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Pico-Salax Brand -
2 Sachets
Our price: $24.00

*Please note all prices are in US dollars
Pico-Salax (ingredients: sodium picosulfate, magnesium oxide, citric acid) is the only dual-action purgative approved by the FDA when the cleansing of the bowel is required in preparation for a colonoscopy. It can be used for colonoscopies on children over the age of one.  Off-label uses for Pico-Salax include preparation for other investigative procedures such as CT colonography, flexible sigmoidoscopy and barium enema x-rays, or surgical procedures, that require a clean colon. Chronic constipation can also be treated with appropriate dosing.


The dosing for each use will be stipulated by the prescribing physician. Read the instructions in the box carefully. Pico-Salax comes in two packets per box, as a powder for reconstitution. Each of the two packets contains 10 mg of sodium picosulfate, 3.5 grams of magnesium oxide, 12 grams of anhydrous citric acid and a marked measuring cup. The contents of both packets constitute a complete bowel cleansing regimen. The powder must be reconstituted with cold water immediately before use and should not be prepared in advance.  The usual treatment for chronic constipation is one-half of a sachet of Pico-Salax given every alternate day, three times a week.

Please read the manufacturer’s Product Insert leaflet that comes with the medication before using it. Not all possible side effects can be listed. If you experience any of these or any other unexpected side effects, seek medical attention from your prescribing physician.

By its nature, Pico-Salax dosing can induce several effects that may be termed adverse. Gastrointestinal adverse reactions are expected, including abdominal bloating, distension, abdominal pain or cramping, fecal urgency, and watery diarrhea. Nausea, headaches and vomiting have also been reported in a small number of cases.

Colorectal cancer is ranked third in terms of the number of new cases of cancer and has been the third leading cause of cancer deaths among adult men and women despite having a high survival rate with early detection. Screening with colonoscopy is recommended in the general population every ten years beginning at age 50 or earlier in the case of  African American adults. More frequent screening may be required when polyps or other abnormalities have previously been found.

The investigative procedure of a colonoscopy requires a full purge of the colon. Pico-Salax is a preferred agent acting as an easy-to-administer purgative with dual-action osmotic and stimulant laxative properties.

Pico-Salax is also being prescribed off-label for similar investigative procedures and for bowel surgery. Patients with chronic constipation can be prescribed lower doses of Pico-Salax to induce loose stools and complete spontaneous bowel movements.

  • Who should not take Pico-Salax?
    The manufacturer of Pico-Salax recommends that people taking anti-epileptics, contraceptives, antibiotics, diabetes medications and cardiac glycosides should discuss the possible contraindications with the prescriber, as they may be affected during treatment because these drugs may affect electrolyte balance.
  • Why drink magnesium citrate before a colonoscopy?
    A colonoscopy procedure requires that the colon be completely purged of all fecal matter. Magnesium citrate and sodium picosulfate in oral solution exerts dual action by combining the stimulant laxative bisacodyl and the formation of the osmotic laxative magnesium citrate. Together these will rapidly cleanse the bowel by causing watery diarrhea
  • How much weight is lost during colonoscopy prep?
    There is typically a very temporary weight loss of one to three pounds after a colonoscopy procedure. It is expected that this weight will return as well once a normal diet resumes.
  • How can I avoid starvation during colonoscopy prep?
    The feeling of hunger while preparing for a colonoscopy is expected and normal, particularly in the liquid-only stage. It is essential to follow the stipulated diet plan included with the medication to ensure the procedure is effective. Drinks with a high sugar content can keep any sense of hunger to a minimum during this stage.
  • What is the best meal after a colonoscopy?
    Most doctors recommend some of the following foods after a colonoscopy: White fish Applesauce Soup Gelatin or puddings Scrambled eggs Canned or jarred fruit White bread (toasted is OK) Well-steamed, baked, or sauteed vegetables that are cooked until tender.

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