Constipation-predominant irritable bowel syndrome (IBS-C) is a commonly prevalent and clinically challenging disorder to treat. Until recently, most therapeutic agents had limited ability to address the complexity of symptoms inherent to the syndrome. The development of linaclotide provides a physiologically sound approach to treatment of the multiple symptoms of IBS-C. Clinical trials demonstrate the efficacy of linaclotide, and a platform to better understand the symptomatology of IBS-C. Based on recent clinical evidence, linaclotide should be considered for patients with IBS-C because it improves abdominal pain and bowel symptoms. In phase III trials, linaclotide met the US Food and Drug Administration responder endpoint with a number needed to treat (NNT) of 5.1–7.9, and European Medicines Agency coprimary endpoints at 12 weeks with a NNT of 4.39–7.69, and at 26 weeks with a NNT of 4.93–5.68. It is safe and effective, with diarrhea reported as the most common adverse effect, which leads to discontinuation of the medication in approximately 5% of patients.
- irritable bowel syndrome
ASJC Scopus subject areas