Ipecac (By mouth)


Ipecac (IP-e-kak)

Causes vomiting. It is used for the emergency treatment of some drug overdoses and certain types of poisonings.

Brand Name(s)

The Medicine Shoppe Ipecac

There may be other brand names for this medicine.

When This Medicine Should Not Be Used

You should not use this medicine if you have ever had an allergic reaction to ipecac. You should not use the fluid extract or tincture of ipecac, it is very strong and swallowing even a small amount may cause death. Only use the syrup form of ipecac.

How to Use This Medicine


  • Take this medicine exactly as directed.
  • Drink a large glass of water (no milk or soda pop) right away after taking the syrup.
  • If you are giving this medicine to a child, have the child drink a glass of water before taking this medicine.
  • If vomiting does not start within 20 to 30 minutes after the first dose, take another dose.
  • If you have not vomited after the second dose, call your doctor, poison control center, or emergency room.

If a dose is missed:

  • Use only as directed.

How to Store and Dispose of This Medicine

  • Do not keep an opened or outdated bottle.
  • Store at room temperature in the original bottle, away from heat, moisture, and direct light. Do not freeze.
  • Keep all medicine out of the reach of children.

Drugs and Foods to Avoid

Ask your doctor or pharmacist before using any other medicine, including over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.

Warnings While Using This Medicine

  • You should not use this medicine without first calling a poison control center, doctor, or emergency room.
  • You should not use ipecac syrup to cause vomiting after poisoning with strychnine, acids, alkali (lyes), kerosene, gasoline, fuel oil, paint thinner, or cleaning fluids.
  • Do not give this medicine to a groggy or fainting person.
  • Check with your doctor before taking ipecac syrup if you have heart disease or any other medical problems.
  • Talk with your doctor before use if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.
  • Keep an unopened bottle of ipecac in the home at all times, out of the reach of children.
  • Never use ipecac syrup to cause vomiting for the purpose of weight loss. Using the medicine in this way may cause heart disease or death.

Possible Side Effects While Using This Medicine

Call your doctor right away if you notice any of these side effects:

  • Irregular heartbeat
  • Severe vomiting
  • Vomiting of blood
  • Severe stomach cramps
  • Severe diarrhea

If you notice these less serious side effects, talk with your doctor:

  • Stomach upset
  • Mild diarrhea
  • Muscle weakness or aching muscles

If you notice other side effects that you think are caused by this medicine, tell your doctor

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088

Version Info

  • Last Reviewed on 06/12/2013

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