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Medications for Diarrhea, Acute

Other names: Diarrhea, drug-induced

Medically reviewed by Carmen Pope, BPharm. Last updated on Dec 1, 2023.

Anti-diarrheal medications can offer relief for adults grappling with sudden-onset diarrhea. The two most common types of antidiarrheal medicines are:

  • Loperamide (Diamode, Imodium):
    • Slows down the movement of food in the intestines.
    • Enhances the absorption of liquid by the body.
    • Effectively addresses acute diarrhea by reducing the frequency of bowel movements.
  • Bismuth subsalicylate (Kaopectate, Pepto-Bismol):
    • Works by preventing intestinal secretion.
    • Facilitates the reabsorption of fluid and electrolytes.
    • Reduces inflammation and hinders the growth of potentially harmful bacteria causing diarrhea.

These medications are not recommended for children without prior consultation with a pediatrician.

Always follow recommended dosage guidelines and consult with a healthcare professional if there are concerns or if symptoms persist.

Drugs used to treat Diarrhea, Acute

The following list of medications are in some way related to or used in the treatment of this condition.

Filter
Drug name Rating Reviews Activity ? Rx/OTC Pregnancy CSA Alcohol
loperamide 8.8 15 reviews for loperamide to treat Diarrhea, Acute
Rx/OTC C N X
Generic name:
loperamide systemic
Brand names:
Imodium, Imodium A-D, Anti-Diarrheal, Diamode, Up and Up Anti-Diarrheal Solution
Drug class:
antidiarrheals
For consumers:
dosage, interactions, side effects
For professionals:
AHFS DI Monograph, Prescribing Information
Imodium 7.8 6 reviews for Imodium to treat Diarrhea, Acute
Rx/OTC C N X
Generic name:
loperamide systemic
Drug class:
antidiarrheals
For consumers:
dosage, interactions, side effects
For professionals:
Prescribing Information
Imodium Multi-Symptom Relief 10 2 reviews for Imodium Multi-Symptom Relief to treat Diarrhea, Acute
OTC N N X
Generic name:
loperamide / simethicone systemic
Drug class:
antidiarrheals
For consumers:
dosage, interactions, side effects
Imodium A-D 10 4 reviews for Imodium A-D to treat Diarrhea, Acute
Rx/OTC C N X
Generic name:
loperamide systemic
Drug class:
antidiarrheals
For consumers:
dosage, interactions, side effects
Anti-Diarrheal 7.0 1 review for Anti-Diarrheal to treat Diarrhea, Acute
Rx/OTC C N X
Generic name:
loperamide systemic
Drug class:
antidiarrheals
For consumers:
dosage, interactions, side effects
For professionals:
Prescribing Information
loperamide / simethicone 10 2 reviews for loperamide / simethicone to treat Diarrhea, Acute
OTC N N X
Generic name:
loperamide / simethicone systemic
Brand name:
Imodium Multi-Symptom Relief
Drug class:
antidiarrheals
For consumers:
dosage, interactions, side effects
Motofen 10 2 reviews for Motofen to treat Diarrhea, Acute
Rx C 4 X
Generic name:
atropine / difenoxin systemic
Drug class:
antidiarrheals
For consumers:
dosage, interactions, side effects
For professionals:
Prescribing Information
Diamode Rate Add review
Rx/OTC C N X
Generic name:
loperamide systemic
Drug class:
antidiarrheals
For consumers:
dosage, interactions, side effects
atropine / difenoxin 10 2 reviews for atropine / difenoxin to treat Diarrhea, Acute
Rx C 4 X
Generic name:
atropine / difenoxin systemic
Brand name:
Motofen
Drug class:
antidiarrheals
For consumers:
dosage, interactions, side effects
Up and Up Anti-Diarrheal Solution Rate Add review
Rx/OTC C N X
Generic name:
loperamide systemic
Drug class:
antidiarrheals
For consumers:
dosage, interactions, side effects
For professionals:
Prescribing Information
bismuth subsalicylate Rate Add review
Rx/OTC N N
Generic name:
bismuth subsalicylate systemic
Brand names:
Kaopectate, Peptic Relief, Pepto-Bismol
Drug class:
antidiarrheals
For consumers:
dosage, interactions, side effects
Kaopectate Rate Add review
Rx/OTC N N
Generic name:
bismuth subsalicylate systemic
Drug class:
antidiarrheals
For consumers:
dosage, interactions, side effects
Peptic Relief Rate Add review
Rx/OTC N N
Generic name:
bismuth subsalicylate systemic
Drug class:
antidiarrheals
For consumers:
dosage, interactions, side effects
Pepto-Bismol Rate Add review
Rx/OTC N N
Generic name:
bismuth subsalicylate systemic
Drug class:
antidiarrheals
For consumers:
dosage, interactions, side effects

Frequently asked questions

Topics under Diarrhea, Acute

Legend

Rating For ratings, users were asked how effective they found the medicine while considering positive/adverse effects and ease of use (1 = not effective, 10 = most effective).
Activity Activity is based on recent site visitor activity relative to other medications in the list.
Rx Prescription only.
OTC Over-the-counter.
Rx/OTC Prescription or Over-the-counter.
Off-label This medication may not be approved by the FDA for the treatment of this condition.
EUA An Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) allows the FDA to authorize unapproved medical products or unapproved uses of approved medical products to be used in a declared public health emergency when there are no adequate, approved, and available alternatives.
Expanded Access Expanded Access is a potential pathway for a patient with a serious or immediately life-threatening disease or condition to gain access to an investigational medical product (drug, biologic, or medical device) for treatment outside of clinical trials when no comparable or satisfactory alternative therapy options are available.
Pregnancy Category
A Adequate and well-controlled studies have failed to demonstrate a risk to the fetus in the first trimester of pregnancy (and there is no evidence of risk in later trimesters).
B Animal reproduction studies have failed to demonstrate a risk to the fetus and there are no adequate and well-controlled studies in pregnant women.
C Animal reproduction studies have shown an adverse effect on the fetus and there are no adequate and well-controlled studies in humans, but potential benefits may warrant use in pregnant women despite potential risks.
D There is positive evidence of human fetal risk based on adverse reaction data from investigational or marketing experience or studies in humans, but potential benefits may warrant use in pregnant women despite potential risks.
X Studies in animals or humans have demonstrated fetal abnormalities and/or there is positive evidence of human fetal risk based on adverse reaction data from investigational or marketing experience, and the risks involved in use in pregnant women clearly outweigh potential benefits.
N FDA has not classified the drug.
Controlled Substances Act (CSA) Schedule
M The drug has multiple schedules. The schedule may depend on the exact dosage form or strength of the medication.
U CSA Schedule is unknown.
N Is not subject to the Controlled Substances Act.
1 Has a high potential for abuse. Has no currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States. There is a lack of accepted safety for use under medical supervision.
2 Has a high potential for abuse. Has a currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States or a currently accepted medical use with severe restrictions. Abuse may lead to severe psychological or physical dependence.
3 Has a potential for abuse less than those in schedules 1 and 2. Has a currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States. Abuse may lead to moderate or low physical dependence or high psychological dependence.
4 Has a low potential for abuse relative to those in schedule 3. It has a currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States. Abuse may lead to limited physical dependence or psychological dependence relative to those in schedule 3.
5 Has a low potential for abuse relative to those in schedule 4. Has a currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States. Abuse may lead to limited physical dependence or psychological dependence relative to those in schedule 4.
Alcohol
X Interacts with Alcohol.

Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.