Medline ® Abstract for Reference 68
of 'Chronic functional constipation and fecal incontinence in infants and children: Treatment'
A randomized, prospective, comparison study of polyethylene glycol 3350 without electrolytes and milk of magnesia for children with constipation and fecal incontinence.
Loening-Baucke V, Pashankar DS
OBJECTIVE: Our aim was to compare 2 laxatives, namely, polyethylene glycol 3350 without electrolytes and milk of magnesia, evaluating the efficacy, safety, acceptance, and 1-year outcomes.
METHODS: Seventy-nine children with chronic constipation and fecal incontinence were assigned randomly to receive polyethylene glycol or milk of magnesia and were treated for 12 months in tertiary care pediatric clinics. Children were counted as improved or recovered depending on resolution of constipation, fecal incontinence, and abdominal pain after 1, 3, 6, and 12 months. An intent-to-treat analysis was used. Safety was assessed with evaluation of clinical adverse effects and blood tests.
RESULTS: Thirty-nine children were assigned randomly to receive polyethylene glycol and 40 to receive milk of magnesia. At each follow-up visit, significant improvement was seen in both groups, with significant increases in the frequency of bowel movements, decreases in the frequency of incontinence episodes, and resolution of abdominal pain. Compliance rates were 95% for polyethylene glycol and 65% for milk of magnesia. After 12 months, 62% of polyethylene glycol-treated children and 43% of milk of magnesia-treated children exhibited improvement, and 33% of polyethylene glycol-treated children and 23% of milk of magnesia-treated children had recovered. Polyethylene glycol and milk of magnesia did not cause clinically significant side effects or blood abnormalities, except that 1 child was allergic to polyethylene glycol.
CONCLUSIONS: In this randomized study, polyethylene glycol and milk of magnesia were equally effective in the long-term treatment of children with constipation and fecal incontinence. Polyethylene glycol was safe for the long-term treatment of these children and was better accepted by the children than milk of magnesia.
Division of General Pediatrics, University of Iowa, Iowa City, Iowa, USA. email@example.com