Irritable Bowel Syndrome (cont.)
What medications are reserved for patients that do not improve with standard IBS drugs?
The following medications are typically reserved for patients with symptoms that do not improve with the above treatments:
Lubiprostone (Amitiza) is a type of laxative used to treat irritable bowel syndrome with constipation in women who are at least 18 years of age. It is a capsule taken orally, twice a day with food. It is used to relieve
stomach pain, bloating, and straining; and produce softer and more frequent bowel movements in people who have chronic idiopathic constipation.
Alosetron (Lotronex) is a restricted drug approved only for short-term treatment of women with severe, chronic, diarrhea-predominant IBS who have failed to respond to conventional IBS therapy. Fewer than 5% of people with irritable bowel syndrome have the severe form, and only a fraction of people with severe IBS have the diarrhea-predominant type. Alosetron was removed from the United States market but was reintroduced with new restrictions approved by the FDA in 2002. Physicians must be registered with the pharmaceutical manufacturer in order to prescribe the medication. Serious and unpredictable gastrointestinal side effects (including some that resulted in death) were reported in association with its use following its original approval. The safety and efficacy of alosetron has not been sufficiently studied in men; therefore, the FDA has not approved the drug for treatment of IBS in men.
- Tegaserod (Zelnorm) was a medication used to treat IBS but was removed from the market in 2008 due to increased risk of
stroke, and ischemic colitis.
- Linzess is a kind of drug that relieves constipation and pain for some adults with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). In drug trials, people with IBS with constipation (a subtype of IBS called
IBS-C) had more frequent and better bowel movements and less
abdominal pain after taking daily doses of Linzess. The drug often began working within the first few days of treatment.
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 3/25/2016
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