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FDA Approves New Drug for Constipation

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved a new drug which can treat cases of chronic constipation and irritable bowel syndrome in adult patients. This latest constipation medication from Ironwood Pharmaceuticals has shown real promise during clinical trials conducted with participants suffering from a combination of IBS and chronic constipation. After an extensive review, the FDA finally decided to give its approval at the end of August.

Ironwood’s new medication, linaclotide, will be marketed under the brand name Linzess, and it will soon be available all around the country. However, the FDA has mandated that all packages of Linzess carry a warning stating it is not to be used by patients who are 16 or younger.

The NIH on Chronic Constipation in the U.S.

The National Institutes of Health has estimated that there are nearly 63 million people who suffer from chronic constipation in the United States. Then there are an additional 15.3 million people who must live everyday with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). For those who live with both of these conditions, they will often take medication in order to cope with the abdominal pain.

According to Forest Laboratories (marketing partner) and Ironwood Pharmaceuticals, Linzess is expected to be made available for adult patients during the fourth quarter of this year.

Large Demand for New Constipation Drug

Recent research on constipation and IBS in the country has suggested that there is a heavy demand for a more effective form of medication, and this is exactly what Ironwood is hoping to provide. Linzess is already projected to be a future blockbuster in the pharmaceutical industry.

Scientists designed this constipation medication to be taken once a day on an empty stomach. Linzess comes in capsule form and should be taken at least 30 minutes before the patient’s first meal of the day. It works to relive chronic constipation by encouraging more frequent bowel movements. As these bowel movements start to occur more often, it will also help reduce some of the stomach pain that is associated with IBS.

More Options for Constipation

Victoria Kusiak, the deputy director at the FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research spoke to the press following the FDA’s approval of Linzess. She reminded them that there currently is no one medication which can help all of the patients who are living with gastrointestinal disorders. However, as scientists and researchers continue to develop new therapies, patients will continue to see more benefits. With the availability of new medications, patients and their doctors can now choose the most effective treatment regimen for their particular case.

 

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