Which medications in the drug class Laxatives are used in the treatment of Multiple Sclerosis?

Updated: Oct 08, 2019
  • Author: Christopher Luzzio, MD; Chief Editor: Jasvinder Chawla, MD, MBA  more...
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Answer

Laxatives

Pharmacologic management of constipation in patients with MS includes the use of stool softeners. Stool softeners, such as docusate sodium (Colace), work by decreasing surface tension, allowing water to enter the stool.

Docusate sodium (Colace, Silace, Sof-Lax, Promolaxin, Kao-Tin)

Docusate sodium allows the incorporation of water and fat into stools, causing stools to soften. By its surface active properties, docusate sodium keeps stools soft for easy, natural passage. Docusate sodium is not a laxative and, thus, is not habit-forming. Tachyphylaxis may occur with long-term use. This agent is effective acutely and does not induce defecation.

Psyllium (Fiber Therapy, Gen-Mucil, Konsyl, Metamucil MultiHealth Fiber, Reguloid)

Psyllium is administered orally and absorbs liquid in the GI tract, thereby altering intestinal fluid and electrolyte transport. Absorption of liquid also causes expansion of the stool, and the resultant bulk facilitates peristalsis and bowel motility.

Methylcellulose (Citrucel)

Methylcellulose increases the bulk of the stool and thereby stimulates peristalsis, which increases bowel motility and decreases GI transit time. These actions of methylcellulose result in easy passage of stool in patients with chronic constipation.


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