Hypnotherapy eases irritable bowel syndrome symptoms

Mar 18, 2010

Hypnotherapy seems to be very effective for easing the distressing symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), and in a goodly proportion of cases, clears up symptoms altogether, reveal experts during a wide ranging discussion of the condition in a Frontline Gastroenterology podcast.

Excluding certain foodstuffs may help alleviate symptoms, but usually only for a while, says Professor Roland Valori, editor of Frontline Gastroenterology. That's because dietary measures don't tackle the root cause of the symptoms - an overly sensitised gut. One of the best ways to do that is to use hypnotherapy, he says.

His experience of using hypnotherapy in the first 100 IBS patients treated with it showed that it significantly improved symptoms in nine out of 10 of them. It stopped symptoms altogether in four out of 10, while the remainder said they felt more in control of their symptoms. "To be frank, I have never looked back," he says.

Another option for patients is , which can be very effective, says Professor Quigley of the University of Cork, Ireland, and past president of the World Organisation.

But given the current regulations for food products making medicinal claims, patients are not really in a position to know which ones might work best.

Probiotic products need to contain the specific live strain and species of bacteria they claim to contain; maintain viability throughout their shelf-life; and be backed up by good quality clinical trial evidence, he says.

Doctors have tended to diagnose IBS when they couldn't find any other cause for the symptoms, making it something of a "wastebasket diagnosis," he says. It is "extremely important" to get away from that and recognise that IBS is a constellation of symptoms in its own right.

And he points out that while anxiety and depression worsen IBS symptoms, not all patients with IBS will be anxious and depressed. None the less, it is important to take into account the way in which the brain and gut can interact to increase the severity and impact of symptoms.

Explore further: West Africa's Ebola outbreak prompts changes in I.Coast cuisine

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Allergic disease linked to irritable bowel syndrome

Jan 30, 2008

Adults with allergy symptoms report a high incidence of Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), suggesting a link between atopic disorders and IBS according to a study published this month in Annals of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology, ...

Bacterial phylotype alterations in irritable bowel syndrome

Jan 15, 2010

Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a common gastrointestinal functional disorder that can greatly affect the patient's well being. Multiple interacting mechanisms, including alterations in the intestinal microbiota, are suspected ...

Recommended for you

Two expats die of MERS in Saudi commercial hub

4 hours ago

Two foreigners died of MERS in the Saudi city of Jeddah, the health ministry said Saturday, as fears rise over the spreading respiratory virus in the kingdom's commercial hub.

UAE reports 12 new cases of MERS

4 hours ago

Health authorities in the United Arab Emirates have announced 12 new cases of infection by the MERS coronavirus, but insisted the patients would be cured within two weeks.

Filipino tests negative for Middle East virus

16 hours ago

A Filipino nurse who tested positive for the Middle East virus has been found free of infection in a subsequent examination after he returned home, Philippine health officials said Saturday.

User comments : 1

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

fourthrocker
not rated yet Mar 18, 2010
I have a better idea, treat the cause which is probably bacterial. It took a researcher infecting himself with a bacteria to prove that ulcers were caused by bacteria because no one would believe him for years. He had to stand by and watch people have their stomachs removed or die knowing that all they had to do was take some tetracycline to be cured and he couldn't say anything. Doctors are stupid. If they don't know whats wrong it's psychosomatic and they prescribe an antidepressant. I would bet any money there are many other things that are caused by bacteria but we don't know it yet. Stupid monkeys.

More news stories

UAE reports 12 new cases of MERS

Health authorities in the United Arab Emirates have announced 12 new cases of infection by the MERS coronavirus, but insisted the patients would be cured within two weeks.

Filipino tests negative for Middle East virus

A Filipino nurse who tested positive for the Middle East virus has been found free of infection in a subsequent examination after he returned home, Philippine health officials said Saturday.

NASA's space station Robonaut finally getting legs

Robonaut, the first out-of-this-world humanoid, is finally getting its space legs. For three years, Robonaut has had to manage from the waist up. This new pair of legs means the experimental robot—now stuck ...