Almirall welcomes the inclusion of Constella (linaclotide)1 within the irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) NICE Guideline CG61 (Update) for use in adult patients and recognises the opportunity this will provide for clinicians who are seeking an alternative, effective treatment option to help patients manage their condition. After reviewing the evidence, the guidelines state that clinicians should consider linaclotide for people with IBS only if optimal or maximum tolerated doses of previous laxatives from different classes have not helped and they have had constipation for at least 12 months.2 The updated guidelines also state that patients taking linaclotide should be followed up after 3 months.2 Linaclotide is indicated for the symptomatic treatment of moderate-to-severe IBS-C in adults.1

IBS is a chronic, relapsing and potentially lifelong disorder, which can often remain undiagnosed for many years.3 IBS- C is characterised by multiple symptoms, the three main ones being abdominal pain/discomfort, bloating and constipation.2 IBS is a prevalent and burdensome condition that affects up to one in five people at some point in their lives4 and around one third of IBS sufferers are thought to have IBS-C.5

"We are pleased that NICE has recognised linaclotide as an alternative effective treatment option for adult patients with IBS with constipation. In addition to this, NICE acknowledges that sub-typing for patients is beneficial by encouraging clinicians to review patients with individual symptoms. We hope that the NICE update inclusion of linaclotide will help more patients as well as it become another option in clinicians armamentarium of therapies." said Dr Jordi Estruch, Director of Global Medical Affairs at Almirall.

The magnitude and impact that IBS-C can have on both quality of life (QoL) and also healthcare resources is becoming clearer.6, 7 63% of patients on existing therapies are not completely satisfied with their treatment.[8] Patients with IBS-C have been shown to have a significantly lower level of health-related quality of life (HRQoL), compared with healthy individuals from the general population and patients with asthma, migraine, diabetes mellitus and dialysis- dependent end-stage renal disease.9, 10, 11

In addition to this, patients with IBS consume a disproportionate amount of health-care resource, primarily in terms of GP and specialist visits, versus matched controls.10, 12 The large number of patients affected, the need to screen out other diseases, and absenteeism and impairment in the workplace all constitute a major cost to the health service and society at large.13