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tegaserod (generic name)

(te GAS a rod): A serotoninergic neuroenteric modulator - It is used to treat women who have irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) with constipation as their main problem

tegaserod

What is this medicine?
TEGASEROD (te GAS a rod) is used to treat women who have irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) with constipation as their main problem. It may also be used for relief of chronic constipation in patients (men and women) less than 65 years of age.

NOTE: This drug is no longer available in the United States. Patients currently taking Tegaserod should contact their prescriber about stopping this medicine and finding alternative therapies. If you have questions about the discontinuation of Zelnorm you may call 1-888-669-6682.

This medicine may be used for other purposes; ask your health care provider or pharmacist if you have questions.
What side effects may I notice from receiving this medicine?
Side effects that you should report to your doctor or health professional as soon as possible:
  • diarrhea accompanied by severe stomach cramps with or without rectal bleeding, other stomach pain or dizziness
  • new or worsening stomach pain
  • sudden onset of chest pain
  • worsening or prolonged diarrhea

Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (report to your doctor or health care professional if they continue or are bothersome):

  • gas
  • headache
  • heartburn
  • mild dizziness
  • nausea or vomiting

This list may not describe all possible side effects. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

How should I use this medicine?
Take this medicine by mouth with a glass of water. Take it on an empty stomach shortly before you eat a meal. Follow the directions on the prescription label. Take your doses at regular intervals. Do not take your medicine more often than directed.

Talk to your pediatrician regarding the use of this medicine in children. Special care may be needed.

Overdosage: If you think you have taken too much of this medicine contact a poison control center or emergency room at once.
NOTE: This medicine is only for you. Do not share this medicine with others.
What if I miss a dose?
If you miss a dose, just skip that dose. Wait until your next dose, and take only that dose. Do not take double or extra doses.
What may interact with this medicine?
  • medicines for bowel problems or bladder incontinence (these can cause constipation)

This list may not describe all possible interactions. Give your health care provider a list of all the medicines, herbs, non-prescription drugs, or dietary supplements you use. Also tell them if you smoke, drink alcohol, or use illegal drugs. Some items may interact with your medicine.

Who should NOT use this medication?

  • Severe renal impairment.
  • Moderate or severe hepatic impairment.
  • History of intestinal obstruction, symptomatic gallbladder disease, suspected sphincter of Oddi dysfunction, or abdominal adhesions.
  • Known hypersensitivity to tegaserod or any ingredient in the formulation.

What should I watch for while using this medicine?
Diarrhea is a common side effect that usually happens in the first week of starting the medicine. This will usually last only a few days and will not come back. You should not start taking this medicine if you already have diarrhea or have diarrhea most of the time. Severe or prolonged diarrhea can lead to dehydration, a lack of fluids within your body. If you experience severe cramping, stomach pain, lightheadedness, dizziness or fainting accompanied by diarrhea, tell your doctor or health care professional immediately.

If you get new or worsening stomach pain with or without blood in your stools, call your doctor or health care professional right away.

This medicine may not work for all patients. It may take several weeks for you notice any relief from your symptoms. If this medicine is stopped, it is likely that that your symptoms will return within 1 to 2 weeks.

Your diet and stress levels may affect your course of therapy. If you eat something that seems make constipation worse or if you have significant levels of stress in your life, be sure to discuss this with your health care professional.
What should I tell my health care provider before I take this medicine?
They need to know if you have any of these conditions:
  • anxiety
  • depression
  • diabetes
  • heart disease
  • high blood pressure
  • high cholesterol
  • gallbladder disease
  • kidney or liver disease
  • now have diarrhea or have diarrhea often
  • previous heart attack
  • previous stroke
  • rectal bleeding
  • stomach or intestinal disease, including bowel obstruction or abdominal adhesions
  • suicidal thoughts, plans, or attempt
  • an unusual or allergic reaction to tegaserod, other medicines, foods, dyes, or preservatives
  • pregnant or trying to get pregnant
  • breast-feeding
Can I stop taking the medication if I feel better?
As a general rule, you should always take your medications exactly as prescribed and do not change the dosage or stop taking the medication without first discussing it with your healthcare provider.
I am on so many medications; do I have to take them all?
This is called polypharmacy—many different medications being used at the same time by one person. Sometimes, being on multiple medications is acceptable and appropriate but at other times it may be problematic. If you are receiving your medications from multiple physicians you need to ensure that they all know what medications you are taking. The best way to do this is to make a list of all the medications you are currently using, including all nutritional supplements, homeopathic remedies, vitamins and over-the-counter drugs (if possible, also include all the diseases you have been diagnosed with). Give a copy to every doctor who takes care of you so they have it on file, this way they can avoid duplicating medications and perhaps even try to consolidate some. After every doctor's visit remember to update the list accordingly. Also, as much as you possibly can, try to use the same pharmacy to fill all your prescriptions, this way any potential drug interactions can be caught and averted.
Where can I get more information?
More Information

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