Imodium Loperamide abuse has emerged as a significant problem among people attempting to undergo withdrawal from opiates. In the United States, an estimated 2. One of the biggest barriers to overcoming addiction is making it through the tough withdrawal process. Withdrawal from opiates is associated with diarrhea, nausea, aching muscles, runny nose, chills, sweats, and powerful cravings.

Taking Imodium or loperamidean over-the-counter drug, can ease these symptoms. The drug primarily works on receptors in the gastrointestinal system, where it decreases activity of the smooth muscle of the intestine. This allows more water to be drawn out of the contents of the intestine, making Imodium an effective anti-diarrheal medication. However, small amounts of the active ingredients do have the ability to cross the blood-brain barrier and enter the brain.

Once there, it can act on opioid receptors in the brain, similar to but less potent than the ways in which prescription painkillers or heroin act. When you first began taking opiates, your body started changing to accommodate the drug use. This includes making more opioid receptors and altering the sensitivity of existing receptors. This includes diarrhea, anxiety, sweating, and dilated pupils.

imodium diarrhea reddit

As soon as your body enters the withdrawal stage, you may notice a difference in your gastrointestinal activity. Opiate withdrawal often involves severe cramping and diarrhea. This is why many people turn to Imodium to treat diarrhea and related symptoms. Although the recommended dose of Imodium is no more than 16 mg two 2 mg pills, up to eight times per daymany people take 60 mg or more when they are going through the withdrawal process.

These large doses can cause Imodium to be habit forming. National Institute on Drug Abuse. Retrieved on August 24, Last Updated on April 2, As healthcare providers, we are here to offer the care you need when you need it.

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Search: Search. Facebook page opens in new window Twitter page opens in new window Instagram page opens in new window Pinterest page opens in new window YouTube page opens in new window. Last Updated on April 2, Share this page.In recent years, a few unlikely drugs have surfaced, and are now being labeled, as part of the opioid crisis. One of these drugs is gabapentin. A drug commonly prescribed for the off-label management of diabetic neuropathy, but holds label and off-label indications for a variety of other diseases too, such as partial onset seizures, post-herpetic neuralgia, social anxiety disorder, alcohol withdrawal, and even hiccups.

Loperamide made its debut on the market inafter being approved for the prescription use of chronic and acute diarrhea. After subsequent studies, in it was approved for over-the-counter OTC use for diarrhea as well.

When compared to morphine, loperamide has been shown to be times more potent in producing antidiarrheal and central nervous system CNS depressive effects.

imodium diarrhea reddit

The difference with loperamide, in contrast to morphine, is it really only produces its depressive effects in the gut due to poor gastrointestinal absorption. By itself, diphenoxylate is classified as a Schedule II narcotic with high abuse potential. Adding Atropine, an anticholinergic medication that produces its beneficial effects towards diarrhea by basically drying up bodily fluids, to the diphenoxylate formulation is supposed to make the drug much less appealing for abuse.

It may not be easily understood how these medications for GI disturbances are being abused for opioid-like highs when 1 is not absorbed well from the GI tract and the other is already a controlled substance.

Both loperamide and diphenoxylate are metabolized in the liver. Many individuals with substance use disorder appear to have a foundational understanding of drug interactions, and utilize this knowledge to increase the amount and duration of time the drug spends in their body. It was shown that between andthe most reported reason people overdosed on loperamide was for diarrhea relief. Severe cardiac arrhythmias including QTc prolongation were also commonly seen.

Additionally in the same section, the labeling explains that at the recommended therapeutic doses diphenoxylate is actually devoid of any opiate-like effects but at high doses, which are separated widely from normal therapeutic doses, opiate like effects can be seen.

User Reviews for Imodium to treat Diarrhea, Acute

The results when the drug was discontinued was opiate withdrawal symptoms that commonly included anxiety, aching muscles, insomnia, nausea and sweating. With the death toll continuing to rise across the globe due to overdosing on antidiarrheal medications, there must be measures taken to try and halt this epidemic. The most recent proposal by the FDA has been to work with manufacturers of loperamide to change its packaging, in that each box only contains enough tablets for a few doses.

At the moment, loperamide can be bought in packaging sizes as large as tablets. By doing this, abusers will still be able to obtain large quantities without raising any red flags.

If the trend continues, the next potential step will be the need to regulate the over-the-counter sales like that of pseudophedrine. Until that heavy of regulation becomes a reality, there are many steps we as pharmacists can take to help prevent abuse and overdose on antidiarrheal medications.

The first and easiest is to use our common sense. Now that it is apparent the abuse of antidiarrheal medications is on the rise, watching for customers buying absurdly large amounts of loperamide at a time should be incorporated into everyday practice.

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Some retailers that sell the drug in bulk are already taking matters into their own hands, and restricting the purchase quantity to 1 bottle per customer, and keeping the over flow behind the pharmacy counter.The following information is NOT intended to endorse any particular medication. While these reviews might be helpful, they are not a substitute for the expertise, skill, knowledge and judgement of healthcare practitioners. I always have to know where WCs are.

So I only go out about once a week. Immodium has never made any difference. I still try it about once every few weeks, but it never works! My daughter worked at a fantastic bakery, she would bring home the "day old" breads and bagels that didn't sell.

Long story short; I overdosed on the best of the best at every meal and snack time. Then I gave up on bread, pizza and pasta, which is a terrible thing for an Italian raised on the best foods. Breaded anything I now try to avoid, chicken, fish, fast foods. When the runs and cramps go away for weeks, I can risk a slice of pizza IF I take a Gluten enzyme pill 20 minutes before I eat. Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn't then out comes the Imodium, 3 before bed and 2 in the AM.

In a day or so it's calmed down my IBS from whatever it caused it. Was told by the pharmacist I could safely take Immodium while on blood thinner Eliquis. I had acute diarrhea and my stools were looking like there was blood in it. Very scary.

Imodium A-D

Even got to sleep some. Felt like a miracle in an OTC product. Thank you so much. Symptoms disappeared after 2 doses. No bloody stools no pain. Fourth pill I accidently broke open while in my mouth. Immediately began vomiting. Until there was no more fluid left. No consequences regarding blood thinners. Again,thank you.The epidemic of opioid addiction sweeping the country has led to another form of drug abuse that few experts saw coming: Addicts who cannot lay hands on painkillers are instead turning to Imodium and other anti-diarrhea medications.

The active ingredient, loperamide, offers a cheap high if it is consumed in extraordinary amounts. But in addition to being uncomfortably constipating, it can be toxic, even deadly, to the heart. A report published online in Annals of Emergency Medicine recently described two deaths in New York after loperamide abuse. And overdoses have been linked to deaths or life-threatening irregular heartbeats in at least a dozen other cases in five states in the last 18 months. Most physicians just recently realized loperamide could be abused, and few look for it.

There is little if any national data on the problem, but many toxicologists and emergency department doctors suspect that it is more widespread than scattered reports suggest. As efforts to limit prescription opioids intensify, a handful of experts are concerned that more addicts might turn to loperamide — much as an alcoholic might resort to mouthwash when the Jim Beam runs dry. The recommended dose of loperamide is safe. The standard daily dose of Imodium A-D is no more than four caplets, or eight milligrams.

But lobe abusers — as they sometimes call themselves — have reported ingesting two-milligram tablets daily for weeks. In a case reported by Dr. Eggleston and his colleagues, a year-old man experiencing opiate withdrawal took so much loperamide that he died. Toxicology analysis found more than 25 times the regular dose in his blood. In another case, a year-old man collapsed at home and was pronounced dead at a hospital.

His family said he had once managed his opioid addiction with prescription buprenorphine, but had taken to medicating with anti-diarrhea drugs. Anti-diarrhea medications are cheap, legal and can be bought easily in large quantities without raising suspicion.

Yet loperamide used to be a prescription drug and a controlled substance, in the same class as cocaine or methadone. The F. Typically, loperamide acts on opioid receptors in the gastrointestinal tract and does not enter the central nervous system. At recommended doses, there is no high, and low potential for abuse. But large doses can produce a high, doctors say. Some toxicologists argue that the sales of loperamide should be limited, much as the nonprescription drug pseudoephedrine was restricted a decade ago to help prevent the manufacturing of crystal meth.You are now logged in.

Forgot your password? Over-the-counter medicine frees Americans to treat minor health issues without first consulting an expert.

For no ailment is this freedom more of a godsend than a pesky case of the runs. You can grab a box of Imodium A-D or the store brand of the active ingredient, loperamidewalk to the checkout counter, and pay, all without breathing a word about your messy butt to anyone. But now the opioid crisis has driven regulators into absurd fits of caution.

And some in the health industry argue that you should have to ask a pharmacist and present a government-issued ID to buy the drug, as is currently the case with pseudoephedrine. In a statement published Tuesday, the FDA announced that it "continues to receive reports of serious heart problems and deaths with much higher than the recommended doses of loperamide, primarily among people who are intentionally misusing or abusing the product. Loperamide is a very, very mild opioid, and like all opioids, it slows down the muscles that send poop through your pipes.

But unlike most other opioids, it's doesn't affect other parts of the body unless you take a shit-ton. The maximum therapeutic dose is 16 milligrams in the course of a day; people using it either to get high or to chase away withdrawal symptoms will take more than mg. Doses that high can but don't often cause "adverse cardiac events.

That's just a mild inconvenienceyou might object, if the changes will protect people's hearts. But this week's FDA notice does not say how many people have died or been seriously injured from loperamide overdoses, how many adverse events might be avoided by changing to blister packs, or how much retooling loperamide production facilities will cost manufacturers and ultimately consumers.

These are not small asks. The answer to the first question tells us whether the second two are even worth considering; the second question helps us understand whether the imposition implied by the third is reasonable. Since the FDA isn't being forthcoming, how might we determine how many people are abusing loperamide?

A good start would be to look at toxicology and mortality data. Here's the research I found on loperamide abuse published in the last two years:. Let's assume that the last report is the most comprehensive. So from and2, Americans over the age of 12 intentionally misused or abused loperamide—for reasons ranging from attempted suicide to opioid withdrawal—by taking a dosage of at least twice the daily recommended amount, and 17 people died as a result.

Or, we can use the North Carolina number of 21 deaths in which loperamide may have played a role, multiply that number by 50, and divide by the number of years four the study covered. That would give us an annual loperamide death toll of I think that number is laughably wrong, but if we're going to say that it demands a policy response of either changing the packaging of antidiarrheal drugs or making them available only at the discretion of a pharmacist, then we should probably also do something about Tylenol and other products containing acetaminophen: America's most common pain reliever kills somewhere between and people each year, and annually sends 55, to 80, people to emergency rooms across the country.

What's that? Well, you must not care about the acetominophen crisis. Due to the unavailability of drugs that treat opioid withdrawal, coupled with the reduced availability of prescription opioids, it's almost certainly true that opioid addicts have turned to over-the-counter diarrhea medicine either to get high or to avoid the physical and psychological pain of withdrawal. But the data we have says there is no loperamide crisis, and the sheer amount of loperamide necessary to mimic the effects of even a small amount of heroin suggests that even if we do nothing, there likely never will be.

Brian Doherty 4. Ronald Bailey 4.

Help for Antibiotic-Induced Diarrhea

John Ross 4. Jacob Sullum 4. Scott Shackford 4. Billy Binion 4. Gretchen Whitmer. Some protestors were nasty and went overboard, but her harsh tactics will sap her legitimacy at a critical juncture. Shikha Dalmia 4.Loperamide is the generic form of the brand-name drug Imodium, a medication used to treat diarrhea. Imodium works by slowing down the movement of the gut. This decreases the number of bowel movements and makes stool less watery.

Imodium may also be used to decrease the amount of discharge in patients who have undergone an ileostomy a procedure to move waste out of the body when the colon or rectum is not working properly or to treat people with inflammatory bowel disease IBD.

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Imodium comes as a tablet, capsule, and liquid to take by mouth. It's available with or without a prescription. Children younger than age 6 should not use Imodium unless directed by their doctor.

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This medicine should never be used in infants younger than 24 months. Call your doctor if your symptoms do not improve within two days of taking Imodium 10 days for chronic diarrheaor if you develop bloody stools or a fever. Don't take if your stools are bloody, black, or tarry, or if you have diarrhea that is caused by taking antibiotics. Tell your doctor if have a fever, mucus in your stools, a history of liver disease, or if you are taking an antibiotic.

Imodium treats the symptoms of diarrhea, not the cause.

imodium diarrhea reddit

Your doctor will determine how to best treat the causes of diarrhea. It's not known whether Imodium will harm an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or might become pregnant while taking Imodium. The drug can also pass into breast milk and may harm a breastfeeding baby. Do not breastfeed while taking Imodium. If your dog has diarrhea that's severe or long-lasting more than 48 hoursis vomiting, or there's blood in the diarrhea, discontinue using Imodium and contact your vet immediately.

Imodium contains a very small amount of opiates, and a growing number of anecdotal and scientific reports have revealed that some opioid painkiller addicts are ingesting large amounts of Imodium to get a mild narcotic high. Abusing any opioid has serious health risks and can result in life-threatening irregular heartbeats and death.

A report in the Annals of Emergency Medicine described how two men died after overdosing on Imodium. Tell your doctor about all prescription, non-prescription, illicit, recreational, herbal, nutritional, or dietary drugs you are taking, especially saquinavir Invirase or pramlintide Symlin. You should also avoid becoming overheated or dehydrated during hot weather or exercise while taking this medication. Imodium is usually taken immediately after each loose bowel movement, though it's sometimes taken on a schedule for chronic diarrhea.

Dosage is based on your condition and response to treatment. In children, dosage is also based on age and weight. Adults should not use more than 8 milligrams mg in a hour period if self-treating or 16 mg if under a doctor's supervision. If you are taking the chewable tablet form of Imodium, you should take it on an empty stomach.Everyone has diarrhea from time to time, while some people suffer more frequently.

Addicts Who Can’t Find Painkillers Turn to Anti-Diarrhea Drugs

The good news is, even if you suffer from acute diarrhea, there may be things you can do to help manage it. By making small changes to your lifestyle — such as knowing which foods to avoid — you may be able to regain control and spend more time feeling like yourself. There are many causes of diarrhea — from the food you eat to the stress in your life; from catching a stomach flu while on vacation to taking medications. Why suffer when you can treat diarrhea and get on with your day?

We can all get struck by stomach flu when traveling.

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Read our tips on how to avoid diarrhea symptoms while on vacation. It works faster than Loperamide alone. How to treat Why treat? When to treat? Who can treat? Asset Name:. Production Year:. Agency Producer Contact Name:. It makes sense to be prepared. Be kind to your digestive system. Advice and lifestyle tips. What triggers diarrhea?

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What Causes Diarrhea? Treat diarrhea early to get back to your day. Why it makes sense to treat diarrhea. Click here to leave a review. Traveler's diarrhea is a common health issue for those on vacation We can all get struck by stomach flu when traveling. Travel advice.


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