Treating Iatrogenic Constipation: What You Need to Know

When it comes to constipation, there are many potential causes and treatments. One type of constipation, known as iatrogenic constipation, is caused by medications or medical treatments. It can be difficult to treat, but there are a few options available. In this article, we'll discuss what iatrogenic constipation is, how it's caused, and what treatments are available.

What is Iatrogenic Constipation?

Iatrogenic constipation is a type of constipation caused by medications or medical treatments.

It can be caused by a variety of medications, including opioids, anticholinergics, and calcium channel blockers. It can also be caused by medical treatments such as pelvic floor dysfunction or a colectomy.

How is Iatrogenic Constipation Diagnosed?

Iatrogenic constipation is usually diagnosed based on the patient's medical history and symptoms. The doctor may also order tests such as a colonoscopy or anorectal manometry to confirm the diagnosis.

What Treatments are Available for Iatrogenic Constipation?

The most effective treatment for iatrogenic constipation will depend on the underlying cause. For patients with normal or slow-moving constipation, treatment may include fiber supplements and osmotic or stimulant laxatives.

For patients with oral constipation, treatment may include methylnaltrexone, a peripherally acting opioid antagonist. In some cases, surgery may be necessary.

What Other Treatments are Available?

In addition to the treatments mentioned above, there are other treatments available for iatrogenic constipation. These include retraining the pelvic floor muscles and using prokinetics to stimulate the colon. In some cases, probiotics may also be helpful in treating constipation.


Iatrogenic constipation is a type of constipation caused by medications or medical treatments.

Treatment will depend on the underlying cause and may include fiber supplements, osmotic or stimulant laxatives, methylnaltrexone, retraining the pelvic floor muscles, prokinetics, and probiotics. If these treatments are not effective, surgery may be necessary.

Norma Hoofard
Norma Hoofard

Hey, I'm Norma, and as a mom who has dealt with constipation in my own kids, I know how tough it can be. That's why I'm passionate about sharing my knowledge and tips for improving gut health and finding relief. It's not always an easy topic to discuss, but I believe it's important to bring attention to this issue and help others who may be struggling. Join me on this journey towards a happier, healthier gut - let's beat constipation together!