IBS Treatment including Latest FDA-Approved Prescription Meds

Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) is the most common gastrointestinal disorder. Many over-the-counter treatment options are now available to ease the unpleasant symptoms of IBS. But it often gets confusing to choose the right medicine according to your IBS type.

A gastrointestinal (GI) illness called irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is characterized by recurring episodes of abdominal pain or discomfort that are related to bowel movements.

Up to 5–10% of people throughout the world are affected by this disorder and, it can affect both sexes, children, and adults.

In any condition, there is always a need for medicines to be readily available just so a person can relieve their symptoms or take a pause till they can reach the hospital or a doctor.

So over-the-counter medication for IBS that people can keep in their cabinets for when the need arrives is discussed below.

The IBS experience varies from person to person. Moreover, some people may only experience symptoms a few days a month, whereas others may experience them every day for several weeks or months.

It happens frequently for both subtypes (IBS-D, IBS-C, or IBS-M), and the intensity of the symptoms alters. However, many IBS sufferers will have symptoms for the rest of their lives.

Still, people who had food poisoning or post-infectious IBS are an exception. Over time, more than half of people with post-infectious IBS will become well and some people will fully recover. [ref]

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Novel IBS Treatment: Eluxadoline (Viberzi) for IBS-D

This drug is used to treat a specific stomach/abdominal condition (irritable bowel syndrome with diarrhea, or IBS-D).

It acts by reducing the rate of motility in your intestines. Symptoms like abdominal discomfort and diarrhea are made better by this impact since it is a good over-the-counter medication for IBS.

Eluxadoline 100 mg and 75 mg twice daily significantly reduced the duration of diarrhea and gastrointestinal pain associated with IBS-D compared to the placebo.

Additionally, eluxadoline enhanced secondary outcome metrics, such as a reduction in stool regularity and urgency. [ref]

  • How to use:

Read the medication guide that your pharmacist has supplied prior to beginning treatment with eluxadoline each time you receive a refill.

Always ask your physician or pharmacist when you have some queries.

Follow your doctor’s instructions and take this medication by mouth with meals two times a day on average.

Never increase the dosage, frequency, or duration of this medication’s usage; always follow the directions on the label. Your condition won’t get better any sooner, and your chance of experiencing negative effects will rise. Moreover, when instructed, discontinue taking the medicine properly.

Use this medication regularly and take it at the same time every day to aid with your remembrance for optimum results.

Side effects:

  • There might be sleepiness, constipation, uneasiness, vomiting, or stomach discomfort.
  • Stop taking eluxadoline and notify your doctor or pharmacist straight away if you have severe constipation.
  • This medication may rarely cause a very significant allergic response. However, get immediate medical attention if you experience any severe allergic response symptoms, such as redness, itching, or swelling.
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IBS Treatment with OTC Psyllium:

The psyllium seed produces an outer shell that is used to make a psyllium husk.

When the seeds or husk of psyllium plants are swallowed, mucilage, a form of soluble fiber, acts in the gastrointestinal tract to reduce both diarrhea and constipation experienced by people with IBS. Psyllium husk is offered as a supplement and ought to be consumed with water.

Psyllium usage is considered safe for IBS patients. [ref]

People with IBS should see a doctor before taking psyllium husk since a sudden increase in the amount of fiber in the diet might cause gas and bloating, which could trigger an episode of IBS.

As a result, people with IBS may need to gradually increase their psyllium consumption. IBS sufferers may need to take their time before deciding whether psyllium is useful because the benefits may take up to 4 weeks to manifest.

  • How to use:

Psyllium should be taken at least an hour before or two to four hours after taking other medications.

It should always be taken with a full eight oz glass of water, and in order to prevent constipation, you should have 6 to 8 full glasses of water throughout the day. [ref]

This drug is far better than the other over-the-counter medication for IBS due to its fewer adverse effects.

Side effects:

  • Stomach pain.
  • Difficulty breathing.
  • Difficulty swallowing.
  • Skin rash
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IBS Treatment with Rifaximin (Xifaxan):

Rifaximin (Xifaxan) is an oral antibiotic that was once advertised for the therapy of hepatic encephalopathy and traveler’s diarrhea.

It is now included on the label as a therapy for diarrhea associated with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). In addition to Clostridium difficile, rifaximin is active against anaerobic, gram-negative bacteria, and gram-positive.

It solely has gastrointestinal tract activity and is not systemically absorbed. Moreover, it could function by lowering bacterial byproducts and changing the microbiota in the intestines.

According to studies, individuals who received 1200 mg of rifaximin daily saw a mean improvement of 52% in their total IBS symptoms at the end of the treatment.

Similar to this, IBS symptoms improved by 53% on average in patients who initially did not respond to medication and received an additional dose of 2400 mg of rifaximin daily. [ref]

Side effects:

  • Trouble breathing
  • Severe stomach pain
  • Rapid weight gain
  • Diarrhoea that is watery or bloody (even if it occurs months after your last dose)
  • Fever
  • Stomach pain
  • Bloating
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IBS Treatment with Alosetron (Lotronex):

Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) in females with diarrhea as the primary symptom is treated with alosetron.

Only severe IBS patients that have not reacted to previous treatments are treated with this medication.

Serotonin, a neurotransmitter that makes your gut system hyperactive may be the root of IBS. Furthermore, alosetron functions by preventing serotonin’s effects on the gut.

This lessens the IBS symptoms of diarrhea, cramping stomach pain, and stomach pain. Alosetron is not a remedy for IBS, and not everyone who takes it will benefit. However, it is available as an optional IBS medication over the counter.

The only way to get Alosetron is through a regulated marketing campaign. Alosetron prescriptions can only be written by physicians who have signed up for the prescribing program.

Side effects:

  • Abdominal bleeding
  • Bloody stools
  • Stomach discomfort, cramps, or burning in the abdomen
  • Tarry, black stools
  • Fever
  • New or escalating discomfort or stomach pain
  • Nausea
  • Heartburn
  • Diarrhoea
  • Indigestion
  • Vomit that may or may not contain blood or stuff resembling coffee grounds

The most frequent negative effects associated with taking alosetron have been attributed to constipation and, in a few rare cases, colonic mucosal ischemia. [ref]

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Plecanatide (Trulance) for IBS-C

Plecanatide is another OTC treatment for irritable bowel syndrome with constipation (IBS-C). It functions by raising the intestines’ fluid production since it eases the transit of feces and lessens constipation symptoms.

Take this medicine as directed by your doctor. Never take it in larger amounts, more frequently, or for a longer period of time than recommended by your doctor besides the likelihood of adverse consequences may rise if you do this.

Side effects:

  • Foggy urine.
  • Chills.
  • Bladder ache.
  • Cough.
  • Body discomfort or pains.
  • Urination that is difficult, unpleasant, or scorching.
  • Having trouble breathing.
  • Extra gas or air in the intestines or stomach.
  • Fever.
  • Dizziness.
  • Headache.
  • Nasal obstruction.
  • Nausea.
  • Ear irritation.
  • Feeling bloated or full.
  • Side or lower back discomfort.
  • Muscular pain.
  • Chest constriction.
  • Unexpected fatigue or weakened state.
  • Discomfort or sensitivity near the cheeks and eyes.
  • Releasing gas.
  • Discomfort in the stomach.
  • Runny, congested nose.
  • Sneezing.
  • Unwell throat.
  • Stomach or abdominal region edema.
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Treating IBS-C with Tegaserod (Zelnorm):

Women use this drug to address irritable bowel syndrome with constipation (or IBS-C) because Tegaserod functions by accelerating the movement in your intestines.

This impact reduces the number of times feces stay in the intestine and lessens symptoms like constipation and abdominal discomfort. It has not been demonstrated that this medicine helps males with IBS.

  • How to use:

As directed by your doctor, take this medication by mouth, often twice daily, at least 30 minutes before a meal. The dose will be determined by your clinical condition and treatment response.

Take this medication as regularly as you can for the best results. Take it at the exact time every day to aid in remembering.

Side effects:

There may be a headache, nausea, gas, abdominal discomfort, or lightheadedness.

During the initial week of therapy, diarrhea is rather frequent, but it normally subsides as your body becomes used to the drug.

Due to restricted blood supply to the intestines, this medicine may occasionally harm the intestines.

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IBS Treatment with Linaclotide (Linzess):

Irritable bowel syndrome with predominant symptoms of constipation is treated with linaclotide (IBS-C). It functions by boosting intestinal fluid production since it facilitates stool movement and lessens constipation symptoms.

Depending on the patient, this medication’s dose will change, and follow the directions on the label or those provided by your doctor.

The strength of the drug will determine how much you need to take. The number of doses you take each day, the time between doses, and the length of therapy are all impacted by the medical condition for which you are taking the medicine.

Linzess is a new oral prescription medicine. It is highly effective for patients with chronic refractory constipation. In addition, it also relieves symptoms of visceral pain.

Side effects:

  • Severe diarrhea
  • Reduced appetite
  • Abdominal pain
  • Heartburn
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Weakness

In conclusion:

While there are several medications available for the treatment of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), the best course of action will depend on the individual patient’s symptoms and medical history.

Over-the-counter options such as fiber supplements and antispasmodics can help relieve mild to moderate symptoms, while prescription medications like antibiotics and antidepressants may be necessary for more severe cases.

It is important to work closely with a healthcare professional to find the best treatment plan for your specific needs. Additionally, lifestyle changes such as dietary modifications and stress reduction techniques can also play an important role in managing IBS symptoms.

Overall, while there is no cure for IBS, with the right combination of medications and lifestyle changes, patients can successfully manage their symptoms and improve their quality of life.