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Magnesium citrate is the main ingredients in many laxatives, including the generic magnesium citrate oral solution, Citroma, Citro-Nesia and Evac-Q-Mag. These are Saline laxative preparations, specifically used to prepare the bowel of patients for the surgical procedures or colon diagnostic exams. Sometimes, people having problems with constipation also use this oral solution, but it is not recommended for the regular use.

Consult your doctor before taking the magnesium citrate oral solution. Inform him/her about all the medications, remedies and supplements you have been using. The doctor should know all your lifestyle habits (use of alcohol, cigarettes, illegal drugs, etc.). It is important to report your current and past medical problems to your doctor prior to use magnesium citrate. Pregnancy, breastfeeding and allergies should also be reported to the doctor.

Magnesium citrate solution might be very bitter, and most doctors will advise you to cool it down in refrigerator before use, and/or mix it with some citrus fruit juice. Consult your doctor if you could mix it and use with some juice.

This solution is meant to be used by mouth (thus “oral” solution). Make sure to follow the directions of your doctor and use the medication exactly as it was prescribed, especially if you are using it before the exam or surgical procedure. Drink the solution with plenty of water (at least 1 to 2 glasses). After you take magnesium citrate it could need approximately 30 minutes to 2 hours to start working. Because of that, you might be warned by your doctor or pharmacist not to use magnesium citrate before bedtime.

Adverse Effects

Patients using magnesium citrate might experience mild nauseous feeling or diarrhea. These are usually not the side effects to be alarmed about.

Some other adverse effects are more serious and these include: severe nausea, vomiting, dehydration, weakness, dizziness, sleepiness, breathing problems, excess sweating, and some chest and heart problems. If you experience any of these symptoms, it is advisable to consult your doctors immediately.

Drug Interactions

Magnesium citrate oral solution is known to interact with certain drugs. It interacts with: other magnesium preparations (laxatives, antacids and magnesium supplements), diuretics, tetracycline and quinolone antibiotics, etindronate, some heart medications and also cellulose sodium phosphate and sodium polystyrene sulfonate.


Magnesium citrate solution should not be in the regular everyday use for laxative purposes in patients suffering from constipation.

Consult your pediatrician if you think your child needs this medication.

Always make sure to keep this medication out of the reach of children.

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