Skip to content

    Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) Health Center

    Font Size
    A
    A
    A

    New IBS Drug Linzess Approved

    Linzess Relieves Constipation, Pain of Irritable Bowel Syndrome
    By
    WebMD Health News
    Reviewed by Louise Chang, MD

    Aug. 30, 2012 -- The FDA today approved Linzess, a new kind of drug that relieves constipation and pain for some adults with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).

    In drug trials, people with IBS with constipation (a subtype of IBS called IBS-C) had more frequent and better bowel movements and less abdominal pain after taking daily doses of Linzess. The drug often began working within the first few days of treatment.

    Studies of people with chronic constipation (long-term constipation not caused by other conditions) showed that one in five patients returned to normal bowel movements after taking Linzess. And on average, chronic constipation patients taking Linzess had more frequent bowel movements, less straining, and less bloating and discomfort.

    Not all IBS-C patients in the studies got total relief, say Noel Lee, MD, and Arnold Wald, MD, of the University of Wisconsin, in a June 2012 review of Linzess studies.

    Lee and Wald find that Linzess can improve many of the symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome with relatively few side effects. "Nevertheless, it has proven effective in only a minority of patients," they note.

    Even so, Lee and Wald conclude that Linzess "is an attractive drug because of its ability to alleviate symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome with a single daily dose."

    Linzess' main side effect is diarrhea, but very few people taking Linzess have had severe diarrhea.

    Linzess is intended only for adults and is not approved for anyone aged 17 and younger. Packages will carry a prominent warning about this.

    Ironwood Pharmaceuticals says Linzess should be available in the fourth quarter of 2012.

    Today on WebMD

    filling glass of water from faucet
    Prevention strategies to try.
    stomach ache
    From symptoms to treatments.
     
    tummy
    Causes, symptoms, and treatments.
    worried mature woman
    Are they related?
     
    IBS Trigger Foods
    Video
    Supplements for IBS What Works
    Article
     
    IBS Symptoms Quiz
    Quiz
    digestive health
    Slideshow
     
    gluten free diet
    Slideshow
    digestive myths
    Slideshow
     
    what causes diarrhea
    Video
    man with abdominal pain
    Article