lubiprostone, Amitiza

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GENERIC NAME: lubiprostone

BRAND NAME: Amitiza

DRUG CLASS AND MECHANISM: Lubiprostone is an oral medication used for the treatment of idiopathic (due to an unknown cause) chronic constipation. Chronic constipation most commonly occurs because of slow transit of stool through the colon that allows too much fluid to be removed from the stool, leading to hard or lumpy stools, abdominal pain or discomfort, and straining during bowel movements, as well as difficulty passing stools. Signs and symptoms of chronic constipation can be reduced by increasing fluid in the stool. Lubiprostone causes an increase in the secretion of fluid into the intestines. The added fluid softens the stool and also may speed up transit of stool in the colon. Lubiprostone was approved by the FDA in January 2006.

GENERIC AVAILABLE: No.

PRESCRIPTION: Yes.

PREPARATIONS: Capsules: 8 and 24 mcg

STORAGE: Lubiprostone should be stored at room temperature, 15-30 C (59-86 F).

PRESCRIBED FOR: Lubiprostone is used for treating idiopathic chronic constipation in adults. It should not be prescribed to patients with a history of mechanical obstruction (for example, narrowing of the intestines) because it may promote obstruction. It also is used for treatment of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) with constipation in women.

DOSING: The recommended dose of lubiprostone is 24 mcg taken orally twice daily with food and water

DRUG INTERACTIONS: Lubiprostone has no known drug interactions.

PREGNANCY: Use of lubiprostone in pregnant women has not been adequately evaluated during pregnancy.

NURSING MOTHERS: It is not known whether lubiprostone is excreted in human milk.

SIDE EFFECTS: The most common side effects of lubiprostone are nausea and diarrhea. Nausea was reduced when lubiprostone was administered with food. Other side effects include headache, frequent bowel movements, fecal incontinence, flatulence, decreased appetite and rash. Some patients may experience shortness of breath.

Reference: FDA Prescribing Information


Last Editorial Review: 4/2/2012




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