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A fiber laxative produced artificially, but closely resembling psyllium fiber in both appearance and action. Calcium polycarbophil presents significantly less incidence of flatulence than psyllium (natural) fiber, because it provides no nutrition for intestinal flora. Water-solubule calcium polycarbophil absorbs liquid and creates a bulky mass in the colon. It is administered in tablet form.

Calcium polycarbophil can be used to regulate bowel function in an otherwise fiber-deprived diet. Because of its water-absorption properties, it can help control certain types of diarrhea AS WELL as treating constipation. It is therefore useful in Irritable Bowel Syndrome therapy, though it is not a cure.

An interesting problem presented by all fiber laxatives is that their intense fiber matrix and water-absorption can make them incompatible with other orally-administered drugs and vitamins, and often those other drugs/vitamins must be taken hours before or after using calcium polycarbophil. This is because the fiber matrix created in the colon can potentially absorb a large portion of the other pill - either the whole pill or the water in which the pill dissolved.

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