laxative


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laxative,

drug or other substance used to stimulate the action of the intestines in eliminating waste from the body. The term laxative usually refers to a mild-acting substance; substances of increasingly drastic action are known as cathartics, purgatives, hydrogogues, and drastics, respectively. Laxatives or cathartics fall into three general categories: irritants that stimulate the muscular action of the intestines (cascara, phenolphthalein, senna); compounds that increase the amount of bulk in the intestines either by withdrawing water from the body (salines such as Epsom salts, citrate of magnesia) or by increasing the bulk when combined with fluids (agar-agar, bran, the various cellulose substances); and lubricants such as mineral oil, which ease the passage of waste and counteract excessive drying of the intestinal contents. Frequent or regular use of cathartics may seriously disrupt the natural digestive processes. When food and even waste products are forced out of the intestinal tract too rapidly, the body is deprived of vital substances, including the nutrients absorbed in the small intestine and the water, vitamins, and minerals extracted from the waste matter in the large intestine. Vitamins A and D, which are soluble in oil, are removed from the body even when the least irritating laxative, mineral oil, is taken. In addition to disrupting digestive and nutritional processes, laxatives reinforce the condition they are intended to overcome. When the intestines are purged, it may be several days before they can fill again with sufficient waste to induce natural elimination. The harm can be perpetuated by frequent use aimed at forcing daily elimination. The response to laxatives is soon lessened, so that larger and more frequent doses may become necessary. Laxatives should be avoided especially when there is abdominal pain. An inflamed appendix may rupture after the use of a laxative. See constipationconstipation,
infrequent or difficult passage of feces. Constipation may be caused by the lack of adequate roughage or fluid in the diet, prolonged physical inactivity, certain drugs, or emotional disturbance.
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laxative

[′lak·səd·iv]
(pharmacology)
An agent that stimulates bowel movement and relieves constipation.

laxative

an agent stimulating evacuation of faeces
References in periodicals archive ?
The heavy use of over-the-counter laxatives, spurred on by extensive television advertising, has turned sometime users into long-term abusers, experts at the American College of Gastroenterology, New Orleans, are warning.
Constipation can be treated with laxatives, but these can cause excessive gas and electrolyte abnormalities, and may interfere with medication absorption.
"When comparing those who do not use dating apps to those who do, we found that dating app users had significantly elevated odds of engaging in the six unhealthy weight control behaviours we investigated: vomiting for weight control, using laxatives for weight control, fasting for weight control, using diet pills, using muscle-building supplements, and using anabolic steroids," he added.
Making the Laxative More Palatable You'll need to consume a strong laxative to complete your prep (if you suffer from chronic constipation, your doctor also may prescribe a separate stool softener).
Bulk-forming laxatives work in the same way as dietary fibre.
If your doctor has prescribed a liquid laxative, it may have an unpleasant taste that's difficult to get down; ask your doctor what can be mixed with the laxative to improve the taste.
TOP LAXATIVE TABLET/POWDER BRANDS MARGIN COMPARISON BY CHANNEL Mass Food Drug MIRALAX 21% 30% 36% DULCOLAX 23% 32% 40% COLACE 34% 39% 44% FLEET 34% 38% 46% EX-LAX 25% 34% 43% PHILLIPS' 25% 32% 39% Source: Competitive Promotion Report Note: Table made from bar graph.
In the laxatives segment, Boehringer Ingelheim's Dulcolax led all brands in sales at drug stores and was No.
Available over the counter at pharmacies and drugstores, PEG 3350 laxatives are generally recognized as being gentle and having relatively few side effects.
Hassan Balaha also recommends a two-step bowel regimen, involving a constipating regimen for 5 to 7 days, followed by laxatives and lactulose for 2 days BEFORE initiating a regular diet--a very interesting idea, which I will share with my colleagues.
According to IASC Executive Director, Devon Powell, "These studies provide significant data demonstrating that aloe vera products manufactured according to IASC standards for aloin content are safe." Aloin is the aloe vera latex laxative component, which has been found to cause cramping and diarrhea.