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Complementary and Alternative Treatments for Functional Gastrointestinal Disorders

If conventional medical therapies prove unsuccessful or have unwanted side effects, many people choose to pursue complementary or alternative therapies (CAM). Complementary therapies are done in addition to traditional medical treatments, and alternative therapies are done instead of medical treatments. Many CAM modalities exist and they can be roughly grouped into several categories including herbal/dietary, somatic therapies (such as acupuncture or massage), mind-body therapies (such as hypnosis or meditation), and movement or breathing exercises (such as yoga or tai chi). In this review we will discuss each of these categories, focusing on those that have been studied most rigorously.

Topics: CAM, Complementary & Alternative Treatments, Diet, Foods, Dyspepsia, pain in upper abdomen or chest, Fact Sheet, Hypnosis, Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)

About the Authors

  • Kirsten Tillisch, MD

    Clinical Instructor, Division of Digestive Diseases, Center for Neurovisceral Sciences and Women's Health at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, Los Angeles, CA

  • Steven Tan, MD, MTOM, LAc

    Clinical Instructor, Division of Digestive Diseases, David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, Los Angeles, CA

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