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Topic: Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)

  1. Fact Sheet: Fibromyalgia and Irritable Bowel Syndrome


    By: Kevin W. Olden, MD

    Although fibromyalgia and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) are two very different disorders, they often overlap, and they share a number of commonalities that bear closer scrutiny. Like irritable bowel syndrome, fibromyalgia is a disorder that is diagnosed based on clinical (symptom based) criteria as opposed to laboratory and imaging studies.

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  2. Fact Sheet: Fiber Therapy in IBS and other GI Disorders


    By: James W. Anderson, MD

    Specific food practices may contribute to constipation, diarrhea, bloating, gas, and abdominal pain. Based on our observation and experiences in nutrition research, we will share with you some suggestions for improving bowel function and decreasing symptom severity.

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  3. Fact Sheet: The Lower GI Tract and its Common Functional Disorders:


    By: David S. Greenbaum

    IBS, Chronic Functional Abdominal Pain, Bloating and Gas, Constipation, Diarrhea

    The term "functional" as used in medicine, generally is taken to mean symptoms not accompanied by demonstrable abnormalities on physical examination, blood tests, x-rays, biopsies, endoscopies or other procedures. An overview of common disorders that affect the colon.

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  4. Fact Sheet: Current Approach to the Diagnosis of Irritable Bowel Syndrome


    By: George F. Longstreth, MD

    In the past two decades, medical opinion has changed regarding how to diagnose IBS. The older view emphasized that IBS should be regarded primarily as a "diagnosis of exclusion;" that is, diagnosed only after diagnostic testing excludes many disorders that could possibly cause the symptoms. Fortunately, physicians can now diagnose IBS in most patients by recognizing certain symptom details, performing a physical examination, and undertaking limited diagnostic testing. This simpler approach is grounded on recent knowledge...and it leads to a reliable diagnosis in most cases. Revised and updated 2009.

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  5. Fact Sheet: Using Relaxation in Coping with Gastrointestinal Disorders


    By: Kenneth R. Jones, PhD; Steve Heymen, MS

    Relaxation training is an integral component of behavioral therapies for managing chronic pain, promoting health, and helping patients cope with life-threatening illness. Relaxation can also assist in managing functional GI disorders. How relaxation works and methods are described. Reviewed 2009.

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  6. Fact Sheet: IBS in Men: A Different Disease?


    By: W. Grant Thompson, MD, FRCPC

    The gastrointestinal tract is anatomically gender-neutral. While its furthest extremity is in proximity to the genital organs, surgeons, endoscopists, anatomists, and pathologists observe no differences between the intestines of males and females. It should follow that symptoms and other manifestations of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) should be the same in men as it is in women. This appears not to be so. This article concentrates on gender differences in the epidemiology, symptoms, physiology, psychosocial issues, and responses to treatment of IBS. Reviewed and updated 2009.

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  7. Fact Sheet: Hypnosis Treatment of Irritable Bowel Syndrome


    By: Olafur S. Palsson, PsyD

    The standard medical methods currently used to treat irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) are of some help to the majority of people with the disorder. However, up to half of IBS sufferers are dissatisfied with the results of standard medical management, and many continue to have frequent symptoms after seeing doctors about them. In recent years, other alternatives have been sought to help these individuals. There has been growing interest in the possibility of using the mind to soothe the symptoms of IBS. This article includes a description of hypnosis for IBS and how to select a hypnotherapist.

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  8. Fact Sheet: Sleep and Irritable Bowel Syndrome


    By: William C. Orr, PhD

    Sleep complaints are quite common in patients with irritable bowel syndrome, as well as other gastrointestinal disorders including gastroesophageal reflux disease. Estimates of the incidence of sleep complaints in IBS patients range from approximately 30-70%. Lethargy and daytime fatigue, which are common side effects of sleep disturbances, seem to also be common complaints in IBS patients. In fact, there have been several studies which have attempted to relate gastrointestinal symptoms in IBS patients to sleep disturbances and vice versa.

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  9. Fact Sheet: Complementary and Alternative Treatments for Functional Gastrointestinal Disorders


    By: Kirsten Tillisch, MD; Steven Tan, MD, MTOM, LAc

    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.

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  10. Fact Sheet: Why Symptom Criteria for Functional Gut Disorders?


    By: W. Grant Thompson, MD, FRCPC

    The "functional" gut disorders are syndromes (groups of symptoms) believed to arise from the gastrointestinal tract, but which lack a known cause. The purpose is to update the criteria upon which the diagnoses of functional gut disorders rest.

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