What are possible side effects of sucralfate in children?

The ulcer drug sucralfate (Carafate) may cause similar side effects in children as in adults, such as constipation, abdominal pain and gas. It can help if a child eats a high-fiber diet, with plenty of fruits, vegetables and bran cereal, and drinks plenty of fluids. Other less common side effects include diarrhea, nausea, dry mouth, dizziness, spinning sensation and sleep troubles. If any of these symptoms are severe or persist, tell your child's doctor.

Signs of rarer but more serious side effects of sucralfate are passing red or black stools, or vomiting material that is bright red or resembles coffee grounds. Contact your doctor immediately if your child has any of these symptoms.

The Food and Drug Administration hasn't approved the use of sucralfate in children. However, it's not uncommon for a doctor to prescribe a drug "off-label" -- for purposes other than its approved use or for people other than those it was approved for -- if he or she believes that is the best course of action.