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a clay mineral that contains aluminum silicate and is the main ingredient of fuller's earth; activated attapulgite is a heat-treated form that is administered orally in the treatment of diarrhea.


(at-a-pull-gite) ,

Children's Kaopectate

(trade name),

Fowler’s Anti-Diarrhea Tablets

(trade name),

Fowler's attapulgite oral suspension

(trade name),


(trade name),

Kaopectate Extra Strength

(trade name)


Therapeutic: antidiarrheals
Pharmacologic: adsorbents
Pregnancy Category: B


Adjunct in the symptomatic management of mild to moderate acute diarrhea.


Appears to act by adsorbing bacteria and toxins and decreasing loss of water.

Therapeutic effects

Decreased number and water content of stools.


Absorption: Action is local. Attapulgite is not absorbed.
Distribution: Unknown.
Metabolism and Excretion: Unknown.
Half-life: Unknown.

Time/action profile (antidiarrheal effect)



Contraindicated in: Hypersensitivity; Severe dehydration; Diarrhea that may be caused by parasites; Dysentery.
Use Cautiously in: Pediatric / Geriatric: Children <3 yr or geriatric patients have increased risk of dehydration.

Adverse Reactions/Side Effects


  • constipation


Drug-Drug interaction

May decrease the gastrointestinal absorption of concurrently administered oral medications (administer 2–3 hr before or 2–4 hr after attapulgite).


Oral (Adults) 1.2–3 g after each loose stool (not to exceed 9 g/24 hr).
Oral (Children 6–12 yr) 600–1500 mg after each loose stool (not to exceed 4.5 g/24 hr).
Oral (Children 3–6 yr) 300–750 mg after each loose stool (not to exceed 2.25 g/24 hr).


Oral suspension: 600 mg/15 mLOTC, 750 mg/5 mLOTC, 900 mg/15 mLOTC
Tablets: 630 mgOTC

Nursing implications

Nursing assessment

  • Assess the frequency and consistency of stools and bowel sounds before and throughout course of therapy.
  • Assess fluid and electrolyte balance and skin turgor for dehydration.

Potential Nursing Diagnoses

Diarrhea (Indications)
Constipation (Side Effects)
Deficient knowledge, related to medication regimen (Patient/Family Teaching)


  • Administer after each loose bowel movement until diarrhea is controlled.
    • Do not administer other medications within 2–3 hr before or after attapulgite administration.
  • Oral: Shake suspension well before administration.

Patient/Family Teaching

  • Instruct patient to notify health care professional if diarrhea persists longer than 48 hr or if fever or abdominal pain develops.
  • Advise patient or parent not to use attapulgite and to notify health care professional if stool contains blood or mucus or is accompanied by fever.

Evaluation/Desired Outcomes

  • Decrease in frequency of loose stools.
    • Return to soft, formed stools.


/at·ta·pul·gite/ (at″ah-pul´jīt) a hydrated silicate of aluminum and magnesium, a clay mineral that is the main ingredient of fuller's earth; activated a. is a heat-treated form that is used in the treatment of diarrhea.


a clay mineral that contains aluminum silicate and is the main ingredient of Fuller's earth. Activated attapulgite is a heat-treated form that is administered orally in the treatment of diarrhea.
References in periodicals archive ?
The Langmuir isotherm also provided a better fit to the experimental data than the Freundlich isotherm for MB adsorption on a phosphorous rock [29] and on palygorskite [30].
Though it is known that the ingredients are a plant dye, indigo, and a type of clay known as palygorskite, scientists do not know how they were 'cooked' and combined together.
Removal of anionic contaminants using surfactant-modified palygorskite and sepiolite.
Dolocretes and associated palygorskite occurrences in siliciclastic red mudstones of the Sariyer Formation (Middle Miocene), southeastern side of the Qanakkale Strait, Turkey.
For these reasons, many measures have been taken, including adding various clays such as montmorillonite, organobentonite, organic palygorskite, weathered coal, carbon black (11-15).
A trace amount of smectite was also detected in the coarse fractions, but palygorskite was limited to the fine fraction of more arid soils.
Kalibantonga, 2006, Heavy metals removal from solution by palygorskite clay Minerals Engineering, 19, pp.
The Company also holds several technology patents for processing palygorskite into feed additive products and agricultural fertilizer products.
Indigo and palygorskite, a mineral clay, were probably heated over a fire of copal, a gummy incense derived from tree resin, says Dean Arnold of Wheaton College in Illinois, who led the study, to appear in the March issue of Antiquity.
1996), but consists of a unique pigment in which indigo is chemically bound to the clay mineral palygorskite (Cabrera Garrido 1969; Chianelli et al.
These include eastern Yemen bentonite and palygorskite clays for soapstone and building construction; brick clays manufactured in several plants, such as the AI Senydar Red Brick Factory in Sana'a; extensive clay, palygorskite-sepiolite-smectite rich shales around Al Mukalla; kaolin-quartz west of Sadah; and loess and loam deposits covering the plains around the towns of Sana'a, Sadah, Ibb, Al-Hudaydah, Lahj, Abyan and Hadramawt.