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Prelief, a brand of calcium glycerophosphate supplement, is available as a tablet or powder for gastrointestinal and urinary diseases such as irritable bowel syndrome and inflammation of the bladder or prostate. Although it is a mineral, calcium glycerophosphate does have side effects and contraindications, as with any drug product or supplement.
Prelief is an acid neutralizer, so taking it with acidic foods prevents the irritation in the stomach, intestines, and bladder as food is processed in the body. Another benefit of Prelief is reduced cell irritation in the bladder, and the supplement is being studied in patients with interstitial cystitis to confirm this benefit. Patients with this type of cystitis and with overactive bladder may experience less pain and urgency by using Prelief.
Calclium glycerophosphate is generally recognized as safe by the Food and Drug Administration. Two Prelief tablets provide 130 mg of elemental calcium, and each 1/4 teaspoon of powder equals the same. This two-tablet dose of elemental calcium is 15% of the recommended daily intake of calcium, and it can be taken twice a day.
Prelief may cause mild taste problems and, less often, fewer bowel movements. More severe side effects occur rarely and are associated with high levels of calcium: kidney stones, swollen ankles, and alkalosis.
Because the main ingredient in Prelief is calcium, the supplement can interact with antibiotics that aren't absorbed when taken with calcium. Additionally, calcium absorption by the body must be spread throughout the day for maximum benefit, so other calcium supplements should not be taken with Prelief frequently.
Some patients with blood pressure or kidney problems or who are on certain medications should not take extra minerals like calcium or phosphorus without talking with a doctor.