Laxatives Market, by Drug Type (Bulk-forming Agents, Emollient Agents (Stool Softeners), Lubricant Agents, Stimulant Agents, Hyperosmotic Agents, Saline Laxative Agents, Chloride Channel Activators, and Others), by Availability (Over-the-counter and Prescription), by Drug Type (Generic and Branded), and by Route of Administration (Oral and Rectal) - Global Industry Insights, Trends, Outlook, and Opportunity Analysis, 2026 –2026

  • To Be Published : Jul 2018 |
  • Format :  

Laxatives are chemical substances that are helpful in increasing stool motility and bowel movement, and are thus, used to treat and/or prevent constipation. Increasing incidences of medical disorders such as eating disorders where laxatives are overused and increasing incidences of constipation for which laxatives are primarily used for treatment may lead to increased consumption of laxatives, and hence, can result in laxatives market growth. Exceeding the prescribed dose of laxatives leads to various health complications such as chronic constipation, diarrhea, dehydration, and blood in the stool. In spite of this, laxative abuse is rather common. According to a study published in National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI) in 2010, people abusing laxatives can be categorized into four groups. The largest group constitutes individuals suffering from eating disorders such as anorexia or bulimia, and prevalence of abuse in this group ranges from 10% to 60%, according to the same study. The remaining three categories are - individuals who began using laxatives when constipated but didn’t after getting better; individuals who are involved in sports activities such as weight lifting, and surreptitious laxative abusers. .

Global Laxatives Market Taxonomy:

By Drug Type:

  • Bulk-forming Agents
  • Emollients (Stool Softeners)
  • Lubricating Agents
  • Stimulating Agents
  • Hyperosmotic Agents
  • Saline Laxative Agents
  • Chloride Channel Activators
  • Others

By Availability:

  • Over-the-counter (OTC)
  • Prescription

By Drug Type:

  • Generic
  • Branded

By Route of Administration:

  • Oral
  • Rectal

Increasing incidence of constipation is expected to drive laxatives market growth

Constipation is one of the most frequently diagnosed gastrointestinal disorders globally. However, incidence rates vary by region. According to a report published by Canadian Digestive Health Foundation in 2014, 1 out of 4 people living in Canada recorded to have symptoms of constipation in 2014. Chronic constipation rates for women were almost twice as high as for men in Canada.

Increasing incidence of constipation were also recorded in other developed economies such as the U.S. and UK. According to a report published by Coloplast—a global leading player in ostomy care, urology and continence care, and wound and skin care, 1 in 7 adults were affected by constipation during 2014 - 2015 in the UK. The condition was even worse for children, wherein 1 in 3 were affected by constipation during 2014-2015.

The scenario is similar in emerging economies such as India, Brazil, and China. According to Abbott Gut-Health Survey, around 14% of the urban population in India suffered from chronic constipation in 2015. As these people are living in urban area where access to healthcare services is rapidly improving, the number of diagnosed patient will increase which in turn will result in laxatives market expansion.  

Increasing incidence of eating disorders and increasing availability of over-the-counter laxatives are expected to drive market growth

Developed economies such as the U.S, UK, Australia, and Germany have witnessed continuous rise in incidence of eating disorders. A report commissioned by Beat in 2015, estimated that over 725,000 people were affected by the disease in UK. According to South Carolina Department of Mental Health (DMH) around 8 million people, including seven million women and one million men in the U.S. were recorded suffering from an eating disorder, in 2015. .

Patients suffering from eating disorders are more likely to overuse laxatives. Also, laxatives as over-the-counter (OTC) drugs, have influenced in the excessive overuse. This overuse of laxatives has significantly contributed to growth of the laxatives market.

Negligence and/or unwillingness among patients to talk to doctor about constipation has limited the growth of laxatives market

Majority of the people suffering from constipation are embarrassed to consult their general practitioner (GP) regarding constipation, even in developed economies such as the UK. According to the study released by Coloplast in 2015, around 1 in 5 (i.e. 20%) people in UK, reportedly felt embarrassed to talk to their GP about constipation. This has resulted in underreporting of the people suffering from this condition.

Majority of the population, especially in rural areas of emerging economies such as India, do not feel the need to consult a doctor for constipation. This negligence is due to lack of literacy, low accessibility to healthcare facilities, low per capita income, and higher self-medication practices in such regions. This has proven to be detrimental to growth of the laxatives market, as people who really require laxatives for treatment are not actually taking it.

Key companies operating in the global laxatives market include AstraZeneca plc, Boehringer Ingelheim GmbH, Bayer AG, GlaxoSmithKline plc, Abbott Laboratories, Takeda Pharmaceutical Company Ltd, Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd., Mylan N.V., and Purdue Pharma L.P.

Research Methodology

Coherent Market Insights followsa comprehensive research methodology focused on providing the most precise market analysis. The company leverages a data triangulation model which helps company to gauge the market dynamics and provide accurate estimates. Key components of the research methodologies followed for all our market reports include:

  • Primary Research (Trade Surveys and Experts Interviews)
  • Desk Research
  • Proprietor Data Analytics Model

In addition to this, Coherent Market Insights has access to a wide range of the regional and global reputed paid data bases, which helps the company to figure out the regional and global market trends and dynamics. The company analyses the industry from the 360 Degree Perspective i.e. from the Supply Side and Demand Side which enables us to provide granular details of the entire ecosystem for each study. Finally, a Top-Down approach and Bottom-Up approach is followed to arrive at ultimate research findings.


Smiley face

Coherent Market Insights desk research is based on a principle set of research techniques:

  • National level desk research: It Includes research analysis of regional players, regional regulatory bodies, regional trade associations, and regional organization.
  • Multinational level desk research: The research team keeps a track of multinational players, global regulatory bodies, global trade associations, and global organization.

Coherent Market Insights has a large amount of in-house repository of industry database. This is leveraged as a burner for initiating a new research study. Key secondary sources include:

  • Governmental bodies, National and international social welfare institutions, and organizations creating economic policies among others.
  • Trade association, National and international media and trade press.
  • Company Annual reports, SEC filings, Corporate Presentations, press release, news, and specification sheet of manufacturers, system integrators, brick and mortar - distributors and retailers, and third party online commerce players.
  • Scientific journals, and other technical magazines and whitepapers.
Smiley face

Preliminary Data Mining

The raw data is obtained through the secondary findings, in house repositories, and trade surveys. It is then filtered to ensure that the relevant information including industry dynamics, trends, and outlook is retained for further research process.

Data Standardization:

Holistic approach is used to ensure that the granular and uncommon parameters are taken into consideration to ensure accurate results. The information from the paid databases are further combined to the raw data in order to standardize it.

Coherent Statistical model

We arrive at our final research findings through simulation models. Coherent Data Analytics Model is a statistical tool that helps company to forecast market estimates. Few of the parameters considered as a part of the statistical model include:

  • Micro-economic indicators
  • Macro-economic indicators
  • Environmental indicators
  • Socio-political indicators
  • Technology indicators

Data Processing

Once the findings are derived from the statistical model, large volume of data is process to confirm accurate research results. Data analytics and processing tools are adopted to process large chunk of collected informative data. In case, a client customizes the study during the process, the research finding till then are benchmarked, and the process for new research requirement is initiated again.

Data Validation

This is the most crucial stage of the research process. Primary Interviews are conducted to validate the data and analysis. This helps in achieving the following purposes:

  • It provides first-hand information on the market dynamics, outlook, and growth parameters.
  • Industry experts validates the estimates which helps the company to cement the on-going research study.
  • Primary research includes online surveys, face-to face interviews, and telephonic interviews.

The primary research is conducted with the ecosystem players including, but not limited to:

  • Raw Material Suppliers
  • Manufacturers
  • System Integrators
  • Distributors
  • End-users

Choose License Type

"How Can I Help You" ?

Finding it difficult to find the research that would cater to your business demands? Give us a chance to help you. One of our Research Consultants will connect to provide a customized solution.

[email protected]

Key Benefits

  • Custom Research Solution

    Talk to our research consultant to design an exclusive report as per your research needs.

  • Customer Fulfilment

    We aim to fulfil client's research demands with tailored research solutions.

  • Quick Turnaround Time Reports

    We aim to provide research studies in quickest turnaround time and in a much cost effective manner.

  • 360-degree Approach

    We cover each industry from supply and demand side with an aim to provide a most holistic research study.

  • Assured Quality

    We strive to provide most accurate and reliable research findings in our research reports.