Magnesium Citrate shortage: Why can’t I find this in stores anymore?

Nobody likes having a colonoscopy. Even though you’re put to sleep during the process, which is dreaded, most individuals believe the preparation is the worst part. The product your doctor advises you to consume to clear out your intestines before a treatment tastes terrible. Also, it makes you feel unpleasant! Magnesium citrate, a colon cleanser, is the main component of a colonoscopy preparation package.

Smaller amounts of magnesium citrate are also present in over-the-counter remedies for constipation. It includes stool softeners and laxatives. It is available at your neighborhood pharmacy or grocery store. The FDA voluntarily recalled some magnesium citrate products in July 2022. Let’s find out why it was recalled in this article.

What effects can magnesium citrate have on you?

Before diving into this topic, we first need to learn about magnesium citrate and its uses.

On occasion, constipation is treated temporarily with magnesium citrate. Saline laxatives are a group of drugs that include magnesium citrate. It functions by making the feces retain water. The feces become softer and have more bowel motions, which makes them easier to pass.

Using magnesium citrate may have effects like improving relaxation and the quality of sleep. Magnesium is an electrolyte especially vital for the muscles and nerve cells. And assisting in stress reduction.

This product is typically used along with other treatments before surgery or specific bowel procedures (such as colonoscopy or radiography). This product will help remove stools from the intestines. Additionally, it can be used to treat constipation.

A colonoscopy is a method that lets your doctor examine your entire colon (large intestine) on the inside. Magnesium citrate can be safely consumed up to the RDA. However, higher dosages can cause nausea, diarrhea, loose stools, and abdominal cramping.

Oral Solution of Magnesium Citrate

Magnesium citrate belongs to the class of medications known as saline laxatives. It typically causes bowel movements in 1/2 to 6 hours each and boosts occasional constipation (irregularity). Sodium (37 mg) and magnesium (280 mg) are present in one fluid ounce.

Major U.S. stores sell magnesium citrate saline laxative oral solutions. The item is offered in many generic brand names at CVS, Harris Teeter, Kroger, Rite Aid, Walgreens, and Walmart, typically in 10-ounce quantities. This medication is manufactured by Vi-Jon LLC, which is based in Tennessee.

Vi-Jon Laboratories is an American health and beauty care firm. It manufactures both private-label and brand-name goods. The company’s products are distributed to shops such as Kroger, Target, and Walgreens nationwide.

Magnesium Citrate Oral Solution Shortage

Magnesium citrate was voluntarily recalled by a laxative in 2022. It was microbial contamination that was creating adverse consumer reactions. The product was marketed to major merchants all around the country. The recall was started due to the discovery of a plant-infecting bacterium. It was initiated by Vi-Jon, LLC’s third-party microbial testing business.

Consuming the items increased the likelihood of developing invasive infections. Gluconacetobacter liquefaciens bring it on. (A gram-negative bacterium is known as Gluconacetobacter liquefaciens. It has previously been identified as a plant pathogen. As far as we know, just one other instance of a Gluconacetobacter species infection in a human being has been recorded. That instance was linked to severe immunodeficiency.)

Along with that, it also causes major, life-threatening health problems. This will affect people with compromised immune systems.

The mag-citrate recall affected oral solution flavors like cherry, grape, and lemon. The 10-ounce plastic bottle-containing product was shipped to wholesalers and retailers throughout the country. It includes CVS, Walgreens, Publix, Kroger, and Target.

The FDA advised customers who own the product not to use it and to return any leftovers to the store where it was purchased. Thus, magnesium citrate shortages occurred across the nation.

Contamination concerns have led to the recall of a laxative

Vi-Jon initially recalled one lot of CVS magnesium citrate oral solution with lemon flavor on June 21, 2022. This resulted from a Gluconacetobacter liquefaciens infection. The recall was later extended to cover all flavors. It affected large quantities of magnesium citrate oral solution.

The manufacturer, Vi-Jon, has recalled that one lot of magnesium laxatives was distributed at outlets across the country. According to the FDA, testing on the company’s 10 oz. Magnesium Citrate Saline Laxative Oral Solution Lemon Flavor revealed the presence of the bacterium.

The FDA warns that immunocompromised individuals who use the medicine may be at risk for infections that might be fatal. As we know, this medicine is mostly used to treat constipation.

According to the University of California, Davis, gluconacetobacter liquefaction is a naturally occurring organism. It is often associated with sugar, especially fruits, and alcohol. According to UC Davis, the bacteria performs the same “spoiling” activity. It will turn ethanol into acetic acid during alcohol fermentation. It also aids in fruit rotting.

The batch number for the problematic batch of CVS Magnesium Citrate Saline Laxative Oral Solution Lemon Flavor is 0556808. The attached product’s expiration date is 12/2023. The products should be put away by customers, who should then take them back to the shop where they bought them.

According to the FDA, the product is in a 10-ounce round or transparent plastic bottle. Vi-Jon claims to have informed the retailers at that time.

According to the FDA, this lot of the medicine was submitted to a third-party outside lab for testing. It happened after CVS requested it as a first production sample.

Vi-Jon, LLC, warned that immunocompromised people using this medicine may be more susceptible to infections. It could have life-threatening negative health effects. Vi-Jon, LLC, has not received any complaints about the recall as of 2022.

On July 14, 2022, the FDA received a notification. It states that Vi-Jon, LLC, has increased the recall to cover all consumer-level quantities of the product. The following goods have been added:

[“NDC” (National Drug Code), and “UPC” (Universal Product Code)]

Affected BrandNDCUPC
Best Choice 10 oz lemon magnesium citrate63941-533-38070038200499
Care One 10 oz lemon magnesium citrate72476-001-38341520313226
Cariba 10 oz lemon magnesium citrate67860-166-38646702057012
Cruz Blanc 10 oz lemon magnesium citrateN/A308697403082
CVS 10 oz lemon magnesium citrate63868-929-38050428335178
CVS 10 oz lemon magnesium citrate69842-983-38050428305942
Discount Drug Mart 10 oz lemon magnesium citrate53943-166-38093351028205
Equaline 10 oz lemon magnesium citrate41163-709-38041163500679
Equate 10 oz lemon magnesium citrate syrup49035-506-38681131287142
Exchange Select 10 oz lemon magnesium citrate55301-166-38614299404205
Family Wellness 10 oz lemon citrate55319-666-38032251580826
Good Sense 10 oz lemon magnesium citrate50804-166-38846036007374
Harris Teeter 10 oz lemon magnesium citrate72036-002-38072036726124
Heb 10 oz lemon magnesium citrate37808-769-38041220510863
Health Mart 10 oz lemon magnesium citrate62011-0380-1052569142158
Kroger 10 oz lemon magnesium citrate30142-899-38041260001826
Leader 10 oz lemon magnesium citrate70000-0424-1096295135541
Major 10 oz lemon magnesium citrate0904-6787-44309046787440
Meijer 10 oz lemon magnesium citrate41250-708-38713733459457
Premier Value 10 oz low sodium lemon citrate68016-696-38840986035302
Publix 10 oz lemon magnesium citrate56062-266-38041415506732
Quality Choice 10 oz lemon magnesium citrate63868-929-38635515901254
Rexall 10 oz lemon magnesium citrate55910-183-38072785134188
Rite Aid 10 oz lemon citrate11822-4330-2011822433006
Signature Care 10 oz lemon magnesium citrate21130-709-38321130779155
Sound Body 10 oz lemon magnesium citrate50594-166-38072785114791
Sunmark 10 oz lemon magnesium citrate70677-0051-1010939908445
Swan 10 oz lemon magnesium citrate0869-0166-38072785134058
Topcare 10 oz lemon magnesium citrate36800-709-38036800455290
Up&Up 10 oz lemon magnesium citrate11673-708-38072785128835
Up&Up 10 oz lemon magnesium citrate11673-666-38072785128835
Walgreens 10 oz lemon magnesium citrate0363-8166-38311917201603

On July 26, 2022, the FDA received a notification stating that Vi-Jon, LLC, had increased the recall. This recall covers all consumer products in all flavors. The following items have been added to the recall:

Affected BrandNDCUPC
Best Choice 10 oz cherry citrate63941-516-38070038587903
Best Choice 10 oz grape citrate63941-162-38070038662204
Care One 10 oz cherry citrate72476-002-38341520000553
CVS 10 oz cherry citrate69842-647-38050428297339
CVS 10 oz cherry citrate69842-647-3800050428285152
CVS 10 oz clear grape citrate69842-763-38050428307458
CVS 10 oz clear grape citrate69842-763-3800050428325032
Equaline 10 oz cherry citrate41163-769-38041163500686
Equate 10 oz cherry citrate syrup49035-593-38681131287166
Equate 10 oz grape magnesium citrate syrup49035-592-38681131287159
Family Wellness 10 oz cherry citrate55319-164-38032251577888
Good Sense 10 oz cherry citrate50804-164-38846036007398
Heb 10 oz cherry citrate37808-673-3800041220510870
Heb 10 oz grape magnesium citrate37808-695-3800041220510887
Health Mart 10 oz cherry citrate62011-0381-1052569142165
Kroger 10 oz grape citrate30142-806-38041260008719
Leader 10 oz cherry citrate70000-0575-1096295141061
Leader 10 oz grape magnesium citrate70000-0576-1096295141054
Meijer 10 oz cherry citrate41250-769-38713733459440
Premier Value 10 oz cherry citrate68016-701-38840986035296
Publix 10 oz cherry citrate56062-264-38041415505735
Quality Choice 10 oz cherry citrate63868-018-38635515901117
Rexall 10 oz cherry citrate55910-961-38072785134164
Rexall 10 oz grape magnesium citrate55910-615-38072785134171
Rite Aid 10 oz cherry citrate11822-4303-2011822433037
Signature Care 10 oz cherry citrate21130-165-38321130789710
Sunmark 10 oz cherry citrate70677-0053-1010939910448
Swan 10 oz cherry citrate0869-0164-38308690693381
Topcare 10 oz cherry citrate36800-164-38036800455306
Walgreens 10 oz cherry citrate0363-8164-38311917201580
Walgreens 10 oz grape mag citrate0363-7162-38311917201597

Vi-Jon, LLC is looking into three reports of severe adverse reactions connected to the recall.

On August 4, 2022, Vi-Jon, LLC, updated an earlier list of Magnesium Citrate Saline Laxative Oral Solution flavors. They were voluntarily recalled to the consumer level and delivered in the US, Canada, and Panama. This applies to all lots of the 10 FL OZ (296 mL) Magnesium Citrate Saline Laxative Oral Solution, Cherry Flavor, and Grape Flavor. They are within their expiration dates.


If you have been told to utilize magnesium citrate to prepare for a colonoscopy due to an FDA recall, please follow the instructions below: 1. Substitute two Dulcolax pills for the magnesium citrate. 2. Complete the instructions in the prep brochure for MiraLAX. 3. If things are still unclear, choose either: Add another four doses of MiraLAX or two more Dulcolax pills to 32 ounces of clear drink.

According to the FDA, Vi-Jon, LLC, contacted customers through phone and email. They informed all of them of the recall. It also arranged for the return of any recalled goods.