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Papers of the Week

2022 Apr 01

Am J Gastroenterol



Real-World Treatment Strategies to Improve Outcomes in Patients With Chronic Idiopathic Constipation and Irritable Bowel Syndrome With Constipation.


Brenner DM, Harris LA, Chang CH, Waldman SA, Poppers DM, Kassebaum-Ladewski A, Sayuk GS
Am J Gastroenterol. 2022 Apr 01; 117(4S):S21-S26.
PMID: 35354772.


Chronic idiopathic constipation and irritable bowel syndrome with constipation are complex, overlapping conditions. Although multiple guidelines have informed healthcare providers on appropriate treatment options for patients with chronic idiopathic constipation and irritable bowel syndrome with constipation, little direction is offered on treatment selection. First-line treatment options usually include fiber and over-the-counter osmotic laxatives; however, these are insufficient for many individuals. When these options fail, prescription secretagogues (plecanatide, linaclotide, lubiprostone, and tenapanor [pending commercial availability]), or serotonergic agents (prucalopride and tegaserod) are generally preferred. Individuals experiencing concurrent abdominal pain and/or bloating may experience greater overall improvements from prescription therapies because these agents have been proven to reduce concurrent abdominal and bowel symptoms. Should initial prescription treatments fail, retrying past treatment options (if not adequately trialed initially), combining agents from alternative classes, or use of adjunctive therapies may be considered. Given the broad spectrum of available agents, therapy should be tailored by mutual decision-making between the patient and practitioner. Overall, patients need to be actively monitored and managed to maximize clinical outcomes.