Medications for constipation

How is constipation relevant to people with schizophrenia?

Constipation is a common side effect of antipsychotic medications, particularly clozapine, and occurs when bowel movements are infrequent and difficult to pass. Adjunct medications prescribed to treat side effects such as constipation may contribute to increasing adherence to antipsychotics which can reduce the risk of psychotic relapse.

What is the evidence for treatments for antipsychotic-induced constipation?

Moderate to low quality evidence suggests tuina massage or acupuncture are more effective than glycerol laxative suppository, and mannitol is more effective than rhubarb soda or phenolphthalein for relief of constipation caused by antipsychotics.

There were no other randomised controlled trials identified that assessed other forms of laxatives in people taking antipsychotics.

October 2020

Image: ©ruigsantos – stock.adobe.com

Last updated at: 4:29 am, 30th August 2021
To view documentation related to this topic download the files below
Fact Sheet Technical Commentary
Tags:  Constipation

NeuRA Libraries

Title Colour Legend:
Green - Topic summary is available.
Orange - Topic summary is being compiled.
Red - Topic summary has no current systematic review available.