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Is Lotronex Back on the Market?

Lotronex® (alosetron hydrochloride) is a medication prescribed to treat irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) in women. It is reserved for use when the main IBS symptom is diarrhea, and when other treatments have not adequately controlled symptoms.
However, this medication can cause constipation, which may lead to serious bowel complications, such as a blockage, tearing, and a life-threatening condition known as toxic megacolon (when the intestines become abnormally wide). Due to these dangerous problems, the drug was taken off the market in November 2000.
Because Lotronex was the only medication that adequately helped ease IBS symptoms for some people, it was put back on the market. However, it is now only available through a restricted-use program. This special program ensures healthcare providers know about the risks and benefits of using Lotronex before prescribing it. You will have to get a special prescription from your healthcare provider to get Lotronex filled.
(Click Lotronex Uses for more detailed information on the risks associated with this drug. This article also describes how it works, whether it is safe for use in children, and if there are off-label uses.)
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