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Revista Española de Enfermedades Digestivas

Print version ISSN 1130-0108


CARBALLO, Fernando. Linaclotide in the treatment of patients with irritable bowel syndrome and constipation: analysis of an opportunity. Rev. esp. enferm. dig. [online]. 2013, vol.105, n.6, pp.345-354. ISSN 1130-0108.

Linaclotide is a secretagogue that provides a combined effect on visceral pain. The European Medicines Agency has authorized its indication for the symptomatic treatment of moderate to severe irritable bowel syndrome with constipation in adults. The purpose of this review is to discuss the clinical framework for linaclotide use in our setting, the drug's characteristics and pre-clinical development, and the clinical studies supporting its use in order to establish relevant views regarding its validity and clinical applicability. The results suggest that the only -non-severe- adverse effect associated with this drug is diarrhea. As regards effectiveness, linaclotide consistently shows favorable, significant differences in absolute risk versus placebo for all objective outcome variables described by regulatory agencies, with a combined pain and constipation response between 12.6% and 22.8% according to the variable and trial under consideration. This response is sustained and drug-related, as it goes away upon discontinuation. To conclude, linaclotide has a safety and efficacy profile that, from a clinical perspective, warrants its use for patients meeting irritable bowel syndrome and constipation criteria, with significant symptoms that cannot be relieved with other less specific measures. In the absence of predictive rules for response, it is recommended that, should the patient fail to respond, he or she should be considered not eligible for linaclotide therapy, and both indication and treatment continuity should be reserved for objective responders alone.

Keywords : Irritable bowel syndrome; Constipation; Visceral pain.

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