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chloral hydrate rectal

Pronunciation: klor al HYE drate

Brand: Aquachloral Supprettes

What is the most important information I should know about chloral hydrate rectal?

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Do not take chloral hydrate rectal by mouth. It is for use only in your rectum.

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Do not use this medication if you have severe kidney or liver disease, or if you are allergic to chloral hydrate or aspirin.

Tell your doctor if you have any type of kidney, heart, or liver disease, or if you are allergic to aspirin. You may not be able to use chloral hydrate rectal, or you may need a dosage adjustment or special tests during treatment.

Try to empty your bowel and bladder just before using the chloral hydrate rectal suppository. To treat insomnia, use this medicine only at bedtime.

Remove the outer wrapper from the suppository before inserting it. Avoid handling the suppository too long or it will melt in your hands.

What is chloral hydrate rectal?

Chloral hydrate is a hypnotic and a sedative medication that slows the activity of your central nervous system.

Chloral hydrate rectal is used to treat sleep problems (insomnia). It is sometimes given before a surgery to help you relax.

Chloral hydrate rectal may also be used for purposes other than those listed in this medication guide.

What should I discuss with my health care provider before using chloral hydrate rectal?

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Do not use this medication if you have severe kidney or liver disease, or if you are allergic to chloral hydrate or aspirin.

Before using chloral hydrate rectal, tell your doctor if you are allergic to any drugs, or if you have:

  • heart disease or heart rhythm problems;
  • ulcer, colitis, or other stomach disorders;
  • adenoids, sleep apnea, or other breathing disorders;
  • porphyria;
  • depression or mental illness;
  • thoughts of suicide; or
  • a history of drug abuse or dependence.

If you have any of these conditions, you may not be able to use chloral hydrate rectal, or you may need a dosage adjustment or special tests during treatment.

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FDA pregnancy category C. This medication may be harmful to an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant during treatment.

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Chloral hydrate can pass into breast milk and may harm a nursing baby. Do not use this medication without telling your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.

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This medication may be habit-forming. You may have severe or life-threatening withdrawal symptoms when you stop using chloral hydrate rectal after using it for 2 weeks or longer. Do not stop using this medication suddenly without first talking to your doctor. You may need to use less and less before you stop the medication completely.

Older adults may be more sensitive to the sedative effects of chloral hydrate rectal.

How should I use chloral hydrate rectal?

Use this medication exactly as it was prescribed for you. Do not use the medication in larger amounts, or use it for longer than recommended by your doctor.

Chloral hydrate rectal should be used only for a short time, such as 2 to 7 days in a row, unless your doctor tells you otherwise.

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Do not take chloral hydrate rectal by mouth. It is for use only in your rectum.

Try to empty your bowel and bladder just before using the chloral hydrate rectal suppository. To treat insomnia, use this medicine only at bedtime.

Remove the outer wrapper from the suppository before inserting it. Avoid handling the suppository too long or it will melt in your hands. Wet the tip of the suppository with water to make it easier to insert. Do not use petroleum jelly (Vaseline).

For best results from the suppository, lie down on your left side with your right knee bent toward your chest. Gently insert the suppository and remain lying down for a minute or two. The suppository will melt quickly once inserted and you should feel little or no discomfort while holding it in. Avoid using the bathroom during this time.

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Wash your hands after you are finished using the suppository.

This medication can cause you to have unusual results with certain medical tests. Tell any doctor who treats you that you are using chloral hydrate rectal.

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Do not stop using chloral hydrate rectal without first talking to your doctor. You may need to use less and less before you stop the medication completely.

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Store the rectal suppositories at cool room temperature away from moisture and heat. Do not refrigerate or freeze them.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Use the medication as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for the next dose, skip the missed dose and wait until your next regularly scheduled dose. Try to use the medicine only at a time when you can lie down or sleep afterward. Do not use extra medicine to make up a missed dose.

What happens if I overdose?

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Seek emergency medical attention if you think you have used too much of this medicine.

Symptoms of a chloral hydrate rectal overdose may include extreme drowsiness, nausea, shallow breathing, fainting, uneven heartbeats, cold feeling, muscle weakness, or jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes).

What should I avoid while using chloral hydrate rectal?

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Avoid drinking alcohol, which can increase some of the side effects of chloral hydrate rectal.

Avoid using other medicines that make you sleepy (such as cold medicine, pain medication, muscle relaxers, and medicine for seizures, depression or anxiety). They can add to sleepiness caused by chloral hydrate rectal.

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Chloral hydrate rectal can cause side effects that may impair your thinking or reactions. Be careful if you drive or do anything that requires you to be awake and alert.

What are the possible side effects of chloral hydrate rectal?

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Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

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Call your doctor at once if you have any of these serious side effects:

  • uneven heartbeats;
  • feeling light-headed, fainting;
  • shallow breathing;
  • weakness, lack of coordination; or
  • a red, blistering, peeling skin rash.

Less serious side effects may be more likely to occur, such as:

  • drowsiness, deep sleep;
  • headache, or hangover feeling;
  • nausea, vomiting, indigestion, gas, stomach pain;
  • redness or drooping of your eyelids;
  • excitement or confusion; or
  • mild itching or skin rash.

Side effects other than those listed here may also occur. Talk to your doctor about any side effect that seems unusual or that is especially bothersome. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

What other drugs will affect chloral hydrate rectal?

Before using chloral hydrate rectal, tell your doctor if you are taking a blood thinner such as warfarin (Coumadin). You may not be able to use chloral hydrate rectal, or you may need dosage adjustments or special tests during treatment.

There may be other drugs that can affect chloral hydrate rectal. Tell your doctor about all the prescription and over-the-counter medications you use. This includes vitamins, minerals, herbal products, and drugs prescribed by other doctors. Do not start using a new medication without telling your doctor.

Where can I get more information?

Your pharmacist has information about chloral hydrate rectal written for health professionals that you may read.


Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.

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