Amitiza is a chloride channel activator drug your doctor can prescribe for treating chronic idiopathic (cause unknown) constipation (CIC), opioid-induced constipation (OIC), and irritable bowel syndrome with constipation (IBS-C), which seems to occur more often in women than men. Occasional bouts of constipation can usually resolve itself by adding more fiber to your meals and drinking more water. The other forms of constipation can be painful and cause bloating and hemorrhoids from straining so hard.
The active ingredient of Amitiza is Lubiprostone. When taken orally as directed, Amitiza uses its unique actions to locally activate specific chloride channels found in the lining of your small intestines. This action results in the increase of fluid secretions that will soften the hard stools and make it easier to have a bowel movement without straining. Dosage of Amitiza will depend on which form of constipation is being treated.
Although chronic idiopathic constipation has no apparent medical cause, several factors are associated with CIC, including not enough fluid and fiber in your diet and your water balance and motility in your colon has changed.
Opioid-induced constipation occurs because these medications interfere with the motions needed to move food through your intestines and fails to travel through your digestive tract. Opioids may also cause partial stomach paralysis so your food stays in the digestive organ longer and your digestive secretions and urge to have a bowel movement are decreased.
Amitiza has only been approved to treat women 18 years of age and up with irritable bowel syndrome w/constipation. Imagine only having 3 or less bowel movement a week and the abdominal pain it can cause. Being more active and exercising, drinking lots of water throughout the day, staying away from dairy products and fatty meats and taking Amitiza can help to improve this situation.
Ask your doctor if Amitiza is safe to take while you are pregnant, trying to become pregnant, or are breast feeding. Your doctor will want to know about other medical conditions or allergies you have and any OTC or Rx drugs you currently take or use, including alternative meds and naturopathic therapies. This will help to determine if Amitiza is right for you.
Do not take other products for constipation while taking Amitiza without talking to your doctor. You may experience chest tightness or feel short of breath within 1 hour of taking Amitiza. This side effect is temporary and should go away within 3 hours. Talk to your doctor if this occurs and is worrisome to you. Until you know how Amitiza will affect you, refrain from driving or any activity that requires your attention.