Navigation Links
Promising medication counteracts constipation caused by opioid painkillers
Date:7/16/2014

Opioids strong morphine-based painkillers are widely prescribed to patients experiencing chronic severe pain. While these drugs are very effective for treating and managing pain, they have one particularly bothersome side effect: constipation. A new drug, called naloxegol, could bring relief. In stage 3 trials reported in the New England Journal of Medicine, KU Leuven and international researchers provide new evidence that the drug relieves constipation without dulling opioids' pain-relieving effects.

Up until a decade ago, physicians rarely prescribed opioids, reserving them primarily for the terminally sick. Today, opioid-based drugs have proliferated thanks to their 'user-friendliness' and effectiveness. Millions of patients take opioids on a daily basis to manage lower back pain and chronic joint problems. Opioids also play a critical role in pain management regimes for cancer patients.

However, opioids have a number of side effects, including nausea, vomiting and notoriously constipation. Opioids block pain by binding to 'mu-receptors' in the brain. But they also bind to mu-receptors in the bowels, and this causes constipation.

Some sixty percent of patients that take opioid pain relievers experience constipation. For some, the bother is so great that they choose to stop taking the drug.

A newly developed opioid antagonist called naloxegol may offer relief. Stage 3 testing by an international team of researchers led by Belgian gastroenterologist Jan Tack (University Hospitals Leuven) confirms the drug's efficacy.

Naloxegol is based on the same active molecule as naloxone, a drug developed in the 1960s to counter the effects of opioid overdose. Naloxone is commonly used to wake patients from opioid-induced anesthesia after surgery.

To arrive at naloxegol, the researchers modified the molecular structure of naloxone. The result is an orally administered, once-a-day pill for patients experiencing opioid-induced constipation.

The researchers tested the pill's efficacy in two phase 3 studies with promising results. Naloxegol was shown to maintain opioids' pain-killing effect in the brain and block their effects in the bowels. Bowel function in all of the 1,400 test subjects returned to normal and accompanying stomach pain and other discomforts decreased. No patients experienced a diminished pain-relieving effect as a result of the drug.

While the studies addressed in the paper focused on patients taking opioids for non-cancer pain such as back pain and other musculoskeletal ailments, similar studies are now underway to examine the effect of naloxegol in patients with chronic cancer-related pain.

Final regulatory approval for the drug is pending in the United States and Europe.


'/>"/>

Contact: Jan Tack
jan.tack@med.kuleuven.be
321-634-4225
KU Leuven
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. New therapy for pancreatic cancer patients shows promising results
2. Immune therapy for advanced bladder cancer yields promising results
3. Experimental trial represents promising step toward universal antidote for snakebite
4. Sleep researchers at SRI International identify promising new treatment for narcolepsy
5. Researchers present findings on promising biomarker for esophageal cancer
6. Vibrating capsule shows promising results in treating chronic constipation
7. Danish nasal filter looks promising for allergy sufferers
8. Scientists explore promising new option for first line of attack in lymphoma
9. GW researcher finds gene therapy a promising tool for cardiac regeneration
10. NUS researchers make new discovery of protein as a promising target for treatment of ATC
11. LA BioMed researchers report on promising new therapy for devastating genetic disorder
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:12/9/2016)... ... December 09, 2016 , ... Flottman ... and outserts. As a means of expanding capabilities Flottman has added a ... to individually code professional inserts (PIs) and patient package inserts (PPIs) that will ...
(Date:12/9/2016)... , ... December 09, 2016 , ... An inventor from ... to safely ride all types of amusement park rides. , The patent-pending SAFETY STRAP ... is easy to use and could be set up in a matter of minutes, ...
(Date:12/9/2016)... ... December 09, 2016 , ... "I had a terrible time trying ... Va. "I thought that if the nebulizer had a more child-friendly design, then children ... , He developed the patent-pending NEBY to avoid the need to deliver medication via ...
(Date:12/8/2016)... MA (PRWEB) , ... December 08, 2016 , ... ... Workers Compensation Research Institute (WCRI) officially opened registration today for its 33rd ... Hotel in Boston, MA . , The theme of the conference is “Persistent ...
(Date:12/8/2016)... , ... December 08, 2016 , ... ... offering Medication Therapy Management (MTM), adherence, and other pharmacist-delivered patient care services, has ... general counsel and Eric Hoessel to vice president of sales. , Litsinger ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:12/9/2016)... , Dec 9, 2016 Research ... Screening Market - Forecast to 2021" report to their ... ... of open innovative models in the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industry ... and rising government funding. Emerging markets and growing research activities ...
(Date:12/9/2016)...  RxWiki Inc., a digital health company that powers ... thousands of pharmacies through its Digital Pharmacist SaaS platform, ... "50 on Fire" Award in the Health and Life ... the award as one of Austin,s fastest growing companies," ... RxWiki. "Our platform gives independent retail pharmacies the digital ...
(Date:12/9/2016)... , Dec. 9, 2016  Forge Therapeutics, ... AG (Frankfurt Stock Exchange: EVT, TecDAX, ISIN: DE0005664809) ... ,LpxC, for the treatment of bacterial infections including ... been recognized as an attractive antibacterial target for ... lack of suitable chemical starting points has hampered ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: