Linzess: A Dangerous Drug for Digestive Disorders?

Linzess (linaclotide) is a prescription drug that is used to treat certain types of digestive disorders, such as irritable bowel syndrome with constipation (IBS-C) and chronic idiopathic constipation (CIC). It works by stimulating the secretion of fluid into the intestine and increasing the movement of the stool. However, Linzess may also have some serious side effects and risks that patients should be aware of before taking it. Here are some of the reasons why Linzess is dangerous to your body.


Linzess Can Cause Severe Diarrhea

One of the most common and serious side effects of Linzess is diarrhea, which can be severe and lead to dehydration, electrolyte imbalance, and weight loss. Diarrhea can occur within the first few days of taking Linzess and may last for several weeks or months. According to the FDA, about 16% of patients who took Linzess experienced diarrhea, compared to 5% of those who took a placebo. Some patients may need to stop taking Linzess or reduce the dose because of diarrhea.

Diarrhea can also increase the risk of other complications, such as intestinal infections, bleeding, and inflammation. Patients who have a history of bowel obstruction, Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, or diverticulitis should be cautious when taking Linzess, as it may worsen their condition. Patients who develop severe or persistent diarrhea should seek medical attention immediately.

Linzess Is Not Safe for Children

Linzess is not approved for use in children under 18 years old, as it may cause serious harm or death. The FDA has issued a black box warning for Linzess, stating that it should not be given to children younger than 6 years old because it may cause severe dehydration and death. Children aged 6 to 17 years old should also avoid taking Linzess, as it has not been proven to be safe or effective for them.

The FDA has received reports of at least seven deaths in children who were exposed to Linzess accidentally or intentionally. Some of these children were as young as 2 years old. The symptoms of Linzess overdose in children may include vomiting, diarrhea, low blood pressure, and seizures. Parents and caregivers should keep Linzess out of reach and sight of children and dispose of any unused or expired capsules properly.

Linzess May Interact with Other Drugs

Linzess may interact with other drugs that affect the digestive system or the absorption of nutrients. For example, Linzess may reduce the effectiveness of oral contraceptives, antibiotics, anticoagulants, and thyroid medications. Patients who take these drugs should consult their doctor before taking Linzess and monitor their blood levels and symptoms closely.

Linzess may also increase the risk of adverse effects from other drugs that cause diarrhea, such as laxatives, magnesium supplements, and metformin. Patients who take these drugs should use them with caution and adjust the dose if needed. Patients who take Linzess should also avoid drinking alcohol, as it may worsen diarrhea and dehydration.

Linzess May Cause Allergic Reactions

Linzess may cause allergic reactions in some patients who are sensitive to linaclotide or any of the inactive ingredients in the capsules. These ingredients include microcrystalline cellulose, gelatin, hypromellose, titanium dioxide, iron oxide red (145 mcg capsules only), iron oxide yellow (72 mcg capsules only), iron oxide black (290 mcg capsules only), and magnesium stearate.

The symptoms of an allergic reaction to Linzess may include rash, hives, itching, swelling of the face, lips, tongue, or throat, difficulty breathing or swallowing, wheezing, or anaphylaxis. Patients who experience any of these symptoms should stop taking Linzess and seek emergency medical help right away.

Linzess is a drug that can help some patients with digestive disorders improve their bowel function and reduce their abdominal pain. However, it is not a cure for these conditions and it may have some serious side effects and risks that patients should be aware of before taking it. Patients who take Linzess should follow their doctor’s instructions carefully and report any unusual or severe symptoms to their doctor as soon as possible.


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