Antidiarrheal Medicines for Inflammatory Bowel Disease
If you have mild
inflammatory bowel disease (ulcerative colitis or
Crohn's disease) and diarrhea is your main symptom, you may be able to treat it with an antidiarrheal medicine.
Take antidiarrheals only under your doctor's
supervision. Stop taking them if you have a fever or severe belly pain. If you have been taking
antidiarrheals for 10 days and still have diarrhea, check with your doctor.
Some of these medicines, such as loperamide (Imodium, for
example), are available without a prescription. Others, such as diphenoxylate
(Lomotil, for example), are available only with a prescription.
These medicines contain
ingredients that slow or stop the painful spasms in your intestines that cause
symptoms. They can be dangerous if you use them when you have moderate or
severe inflammation of the colon, because they can cause a serious complication
called toxic megacolon in which the colon swells to many times its normal
How this information was developed to help you make better health decisions.