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.
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.
SIDE EFFECTS: The most common side effects of lubiprostone are:
- frequent bowel movements,
- fecal incontinence,
- decreased appetite, and
Quick GuideDigestive Disorders: Constipation Myths and Facts
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