Polyethylene glycol 4000 vs. lactulose for the treatment of neurogenic constipation in myelomeningocele children: a randomized-controlled clinical trial
Article first published online: 30 MAR 2006
Alimentary Pharmacology & Therapeutics
Volume 23, Issue 8, pages 1259–1265, April 2006
How to Cite
RENDELI, C., AUSILI, E., TABACCO, F., FOCARELLI, B., PANTANELLA, A., DI ROCCO, C., GENOVESE, O. and FUNDARÒ, C. (2006), Polyethylene glycol 4000 vs. lactulose for the treatment of neurogenic constipation in myelomeningocele children: a randomized-controlled clinical trial. Alimentary Pharmacology & Therapeutics, 23: 1259–1265. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2036.2006.02872.x
- Issue published online: 30 MAR 2006
- Article first published online: 30 MAR 2006
- Publication data Submitted 22 December 2005 First decision 4 January 2006 Resubmitted 14 January 2006 Accepted 16 January 2006
Aim To compare the therapeutic effectiveness and tolerability of low daily doses of polyethylene glycol 4000 vs. lactulose in the treatment of neurogenic constipation in children with myelomeningocele.
Methods Sixty-seven children with chronic neurogenic constipation were randomized allocated to receive either polyethylene glycol 4000 (0.50 g/kg) or lactulose (1.5 g/kg) for 6 months. Patients or their parents reported frequency and modality of evacuation and side effects on a diary card. Primary outcome was bowel frequency ≥3/week, and the second one was side effects at the end of treatment.
Results Complete remission of constipation was reported by a significantly (P < 0.01) higher number of patients treated with polyethylene glycol compared with lactulose. At the end of the study, 46% patients of polyethylene glycol group and 22% of the lactulose group were asymptomatic. Compared with lactulose, patients treated with polyethylene glycol reported higher bowel frequency (5.1 vs. 2.9 bowel movements/week, P < 0.01) and reduction of encopresis. Neither lactulose nor polyethylene glycol caused clinically-significant serious side effects and palatability was similar.
Conclusions Polyethylene glycol 4000 compared with lactulose provided a higher success rate, without significant side effects, for the treatment of constipation in myelomeningocele children.