What is the role of osmotic laxatives in the treatment of constipation?

Updated: May 18, 2020
  • Author: Abimbola Farinde, PharmD, PhD; more...
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Small doses of osmotic agents are useful for long-term treatment of constipation with slow colonic transit in patients who are refractory to dietary fiber supplementation. In large doses, these agents may also be used as part of a bowel evacuation protocol for invasive procedures or surgery. Osmotic laxatives include the following:

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