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Bulk ‘laxatives’ in medicine and surgery


Bulk laxatives, or better, bulk-forming agents, have long been taken for granted, and it is now becoming clear that their uses are wider and more important than was generally appreciated, though systematic observations are still few. They relieve constipation and produce softer and larger stools. This is due in part to their hydrophilic action increasing the water content of the stool. They also modify the transit time of colonic contents. Bulk laxatives have no pharmacological action on the wall of the bowel itself.1 2

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