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How to use your suppositories

Advice on how to use suppositories correctly

Suppositories need to be inserted into the rectum (backpassage) where they melt and release their medicine. These medicines are not to be taken by mouth.

  1. Read the instructions on the label.
  2. Wash and dry your hands.
  3. Remove the suppository from the plastic or foil wrapper.
  4. Lie on your side with your top leg bent up towards your tummy, or squat down, or stand with one leg raised on a seat.
  5. Use your finger to gently push the suppository, rounded end first, in to your rectum (back passage) as high as it will comfortably go.  A water-based lubricant may be used on the suppository to make this easier.
  6. You may feel the urge to push the suppository out straight away. If this happens lie or stand still and clench your buttocks together for a few minutes. The feeling should go away.
  7. If the suppository does come out straight away you can repeat the process with a fresh suppository.
  8. Wash your hands.
  9. Try not to empty your bowels for at least one hour (unless the suppository is a laxative).
  10. If the suppository is to help you move your bowels when you are constipated keep within easy reach of a toilet since the urge to go may be powerful.

Store your suppositories in a cool dry place.

Who can I contact if I have any more questions?

If you have any further questions about your medicines contact the Patient Medicines Helpline within the Medicines Resource Centre on 01296 838220.

Opening hours: Monday – Friday 9-4pm.

Please remember that this leaflet is intended as general information only. We aim to make the information as up to date and accurate as possible, but please note that it is subject to change. Please therefore always check specific advice on any concerns you may have with your doctor.