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Health Tip: Laxatives Have Side Effects

Posted 8 Jun 2016 by Drugs.com

-- Laxatives can have unpleasant side effects, especially when overused. The American Academy of Family Physicians says possible problems associated with laxative use include: Abdominal cramps or nausea. Gas, diarrhea or bloating. Electrolyte imbalance, which can affect the muscles, nerves and organs. Those most at risk include children and people with kidney disease or diabetes. Muscle weakness or muscle spasms. Fatigue, confusion, headache or vomiting. Read more

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Laxative Type Might Influence Colon Cancer Risk, Study Finds

Posted 8 Oct 2014 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Oct. 8, 2014 – A new study suggests that the type of laxative a person takes might be a factor in their odds for colon cancer. The research indicates that fiber-based laxatives are associated with a lower risk of colorectal cancer, while non-fiber laxatives are linked with a higher risk. The study could only show an association between laxative types and colon cancer risk, it could not prove cause-and-effect, and experts stress that more study is needed. Still, the researchers believe the findings are important because about 20 percent of Americans use laxatives. According to a team led by Jessica Citronberg, a predoctoral fellow at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle, non-fiber laxatives are the most widely used in the United States and work by forcing the colon to contract. On the other hand, fiber-based laxatives boost the water content and bulk of the stool ... Read more

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