Opioid induced constipation (OIC)

Opioid induced constipation (OIC) impacts quality of life for many patients

Up to
of chronic pain patients on opioids are estimated to be struggling with OIC (n=322)1

of cancer patients on opioids are estimated to suffer with OIC despite laxative use (n=520)2

OIC lasts for the duration of their opioid treatment3


Slows GI propulsion and reduces intestinal secretion4,5

OIC is defined as a change from baseline bowel habits and defecation patterns following initiation of opioid therapy5

OIC may require different treatment compared to constipation of other causes

To find out more about OIC and its impact on patients, visit the OIC eLearning module

Many patients with OIC don’t respond to laxatives

Laxatives do not target the cause of OIC6

of patients taking opioids and experiencing OIC reported that they had reduced their pain medication as a result of their constipation (n=513)7

…despite suffering increased pain4

of patients don’t respond adequately to laxatives (n=76)8

References: 1. Bell TJ, Panchal SJ, Miaskowski C, et al. The prevalence, severity, and impact of opioid-induced bowel dysfunction: results of a US and European Patient Survey (PROBE 1). Pain Med. 2009;10:35–42. 2. Abramowitz L, Beziaud N, Labreze L, et al. Prevalence and impact of constipation and bowel dysfunction induced by strong opioids: a cross-sectional survey of 520 patients with cancer pain: DYONISOS study. J Med Econ. 2013;16:1423 -33. doi:10.3111/13696998.20 13.851082. 3. McNicol E, Horowicz-Mehler N, Fisk RA, et al. Management of opioid side effects in cancer-related and chronic noncancer pain: a systematic review. Journal of Pain. 2003;4(5):231-256. 4. Camilleri M, Drossman D, Becker G, et al. Emerging treatments in neurogastroenterology: a multidisciplinary working group consensus statement on opioid-induced constipation. Neurogastroenterology & Motility. 2014;26(10):1386-1395. 5. Brock C, Olesen SS, Olesen AE, et al. Opioid-induced bowel dysfunction: pathophysiology and management. Drugs. 2012;72(14):1847-1865. 6. Leppert W. The role of opioid receptor antagonists in the treatment of opioid-induced constipation: a review. Advances in Therapy. 2010;27(10):714-730. 7. Epstein RS, Cimen A, Benenson H, et al. Patient preferences for change in symptoms associated with opioid-induced constipation. Advances in Therapy. 2014;31(12):1263-1271. 8. Pappagallo M. Incidence, prevalence, and management of opioid bowel dysfunction. The American Journal of Surgery. 2001;182(5A Suppl):11S-18S.
KKI/UKIRE/MOV/0237 09/20     This website is intended for UK and IRE healthcare professionals and is provided as a service to medicine by Kyowa Kirin
KKI/UKIRE/MOV/0237 09/20
This website is intended for UK and IRE healthcare professionals and is provided as a service to medicine by Kyowa Kirin