THURSDAY, March 25 (HealthDay News) -- Xifaxan (rifaximin) has been approved for people with advanced liver disease to reduce the risk of overt hepatic encephalopathy (HE), a reduction in brain function that occurs among people whose livers can't remove poisons from the blood, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration said in a news release.
Latest Medications News
HE is thought to occur from a buildup of ammonia, which Xifaxan works to reduce, the agency said. The drug is already FDA-approved to treat traveler's diarrhea.
Xifaxan's effectiveness in preventing HE was evaluated in clinical trials in the United States, Canada and Russia. People who took the drug were less likely to develop the disorder, compared to those who took an inactive placebo.
Xifaxan is produced by North Carolina-based Salix Pharmaceuticals.
-- Scott Roberts
Copyright © 2010 HealthDay. All rights reserved.
Subscribe to MedicineNet's General Health Newsletter