Candy, B., Jones, L., Goodman, M.L., Drake, R., & Tookman, A. (2011). Laxatives or methylnaltrexone for the management of constipation in palliative care patients. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, 1, CD003448.doi: 10.1002/14651858.CD003448.pub3
To update the information available on the effectiveness of laxatives and methylnaltrexone for constipation management in palliative care patients.
A total of 186 references were retrieved. If citation screening did not identify whether a study was eligible, the full text was reviewed for acceptability. Two authors independently screened studies and discussed differences of opinion. Randomized controlled clinical trials were evaluated for inclusion.
Well-designed clinical trials are needed to help identify which laxatives are most effective for palliative care patients with constipation.
Very few clinical trials effectively evaluated the use of laxatives in this patient population.