Proper Use

Drug information provided by: Micromedex

Before taking this medicine, call a poison control center, your doctor, or an emergency room for advice. It is a good idea to have these telephone numbers readily available.

To prevent activated charcoal powder from scattering, be careful when opening and adding water to the powder container.

It is very important that you shake the liquid form of this medicine well before taking it, because some might have settled in the bottom. Be sure to drink all the liquid. Then rinse the container with a small amount of water, shake the container, and drink this mixture to get the full dose of activated charcoal.

If you have been told to take both this medicine and ipecac syrup to treat the poisoning, do not take this medicine until after you have taken the ipecac syrup to cause vomiting and the vomiting has stopped. This usually takes about 30 minutes.

Do not take this medicine mixed with chocolate syrup, ice cream or sherbet, since they may prevent the medicine from working properly.

If you are taking any other medicine, do not take it within 2 hours of the activated charcoal. Taking other medicines together with activated charcoal may prevent the other medicine from being absorbed by your body. If you have any questions about this, check with your health care professional.

Dosing

The dose medicines in this class will be different for different patients. Follow your doctor's orders or the directions on the label. The following information includes only the average doses of these medicines. If your dose is different, do not change it unless your doctor tells you to do so.

The amount of medicine that you take depends on the strength of the medicine. Also, the number of doses you take each day, the time allowed between doses, and the length of time you take the medicine depend on the medical problem for which you are using the medicine.

For activated charcoal

  • —For oral dosage form (powder):
    • For treatment of poisoning:
      • Treatment with one dose:
        • Adults and teenagers—Dose is usually 25 to 100 grams mixed with water.
        • Children 1 through 12 years of age—Dose is usually 25 to 50 grams mixed with water, or the dose may be based on body weight. It may be 0.5 to 1 gram per kilogram (kg) (0.23 to 0.45 gram per pound) of body weight mixed with water.
        • Children up to 1 year of age—Dose is usually 10 to 25 grams mixed with water, or the dose may be based on body weight. It may be 0.5 to 1 gram per kg (0.23 to 0.45 gram per pound) of body weight mixed with water.
      • Treatment with more than one dose:
        • Adults and teenagers—At first, the dose is 50 to 100 grams. Then the dose may be 12.5 grams given every hour, 25 grams given every two hours, or 50 grams given every four hours. Each dose should be mixed with water.
        • Children up to 13 years of age—At first, the dose is 10 to 25 grams. Then the dose is based on body weight. It is usually 1 to 2 grams per kg (0.45 to 0.91 gram per pound) of body weight given every two to four hours. Each dose should be mixed with water.
  • —For oral dosage form (oral suspension):
    • For treatment of poisoning:
      • Treatment with one dose:
        • Adults and teenagers—Dose is usually 25 to 100 grams.
        • Children 1 through 12 years of age—Dose is usually 25 to 50 grams, or the dose may be based on body weight. It may be 0.5 to 1 gram per kg (0.23 to 0.45 gram per pound) of body weight.
        • Children up to 1 year of age—Dose is usually 10 to 25 grams, or the dose may be based on body weight. It may be 0.5 to 1 gram per kg (0.23 to 0.45 gram per pound) of body weight.
      • Treatment with more than one dose:
        • Adults and teenagers—At first, the dose is 50 to 100 grams. Then the dose may be 12.5 grams given every hour, 25 grams given every two hours, or 50 grams given every four hours.
        • Children up to 13 years of age—At first, the dose is 10 to 25 grams. Then the dose is based on body weight. It is usually 1 to 2 grams per kg (0.45 to 0.91 gram per pound) of body weight given every two to four hours.

For activated charcoal and sorbitol

  • For oral dosage form (oral suspension):
    • For treatment of poisoning:
      • Adults and teenagers—Dose is usually 50 to 100 grams of activated charcoal given one time.
      • Children 1 through 12 years of age—Dose is usually 25 to 50 grams of activated charcoal given one time.
      • Children up to 1 year of age—Use is not recommended.

Storage

Keep out of the reach of children.

Store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light. Keep from freezing.

Do not keep outdated medicine or medicine no longer needed.