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CBT Plus Medical Treatment is Most Effective for IBS

According to a recent study published in the Archives of Medical Science, cognitive behavior therapy (CBT) in conjunction with medical treatment is more effective for Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) than medical treatment alone.  Participants in the current study (50 patients diagnosed with IBS) were randomly assigned to one of two groups: (1) an experimental group that received a combination of CBT and medical treatment, and (2) a control group that received only medical treatment. Results indicate that patients who received CBT in conjunction with medical treatment fared better (80% cured) than those who received medical treatment alone. These findings suggest that CBT reduces the disability caused by IBS and that CBT in conjunction with medical treatment should be utilized in the treatment of IBS.

Mahvi-Shirazi M, Fathi-Ashtiani A, Rasoolzade-Tabatabaei SK, Amini M., (2012). Irritable bowel syndrome treatment: cognitive behavioral therapy versus medical treatment. Archives of Medical Science. 29 (1): 123-129.

Internet Based CBT for Irritable Bowel Syndrome

A study published in Behaviour Research and Therapy found that brief, internet based cognitive behavior therapy (CBT), with limited therapist feedback (delivered via email), can help reduce symptom severity in irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). Researchers found that CBT can reduce individuals’ catastrophic thinking about the implications of gastrointestinal (GI) symptoms present in IBS cases. Reducing catastrophic thinking via CBT may lead to a decrease in symptom severity and positive treatment outcomes.

Hunt, M.G., Moshier, S., & Milonova, M. (2009). Brief cognitive-behavioral internet therapy for irritable bowel syndrome. Behaviour Research and Therapy, 47(9), 797-802.

CBT is Effective for Irritable Bowel Syndrome

researchlogo72x65bl.jpgA recent study posted in Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology, a journal publishing clinical articles on all aspects of the digestive system, shows evidence that cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is an effective treatment for irritable bowl syndrome (IBS).

The study included 71 participants, with moderately severe IBS symptoms, who were randomly assigned to one of two conditions; they either received 10 weekly 1-hour sessions of CBT, or 4 1-hour sessions over 10 weeks.

Results showed that “rapid responders”, those who began to see improvements in their IBS symptoms within the first 4 weeks, had maintained the improvements at both immediate and 3-month check ups after treatment had ended. No difference was observed between the patients who received 4 sessions and those who received 10 sessions during the 10 weeks.

Lackner, J. M., Gudleski, G. D., Keefer, L., Powell, C., & Katz, L. A. (2010). Rapid response to    cognitive behavior therapy predicts treatment outcome in patients with irritable bowel syndrome, Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology, 8, 426-432.

Forbes Magazine: Patient Fix Thyself… Cognitive Behavior Therapy… may be better than Prozac

 

“Dump the Couch! And ditch the Zoloft. A new therapy revolution is here,” says the cover of the April, 2007 issue of Forbes Magazine.

Forbes is referring to Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT), which has “been shown to be surprisingly effective in quelling an ever expanding array of mental maladies: depression, anxiety, panic attacks, obsessive-compulsive disorder, post-traumatic stress syndrome, bulimia, hypochondria–even insomnia. Now almost 150 clinical trials are under way to learn whether CBT also can help patients with Tourette’s syndrome, gambling addiction, obesity, irritable bowel syndrome and more; one trial studies the therapy in children who have been sexually abused.”

The Forbes article highlights patients who improved with CBT, and includes commentary from leaders in the field, including Dr. Aaron Beck.

Cognitive Behavioral Aspects of Irritable Bowel Syndrome

recent study followed 620 patients with gastroenteritis (an infection or inflammation of the stomach area) to see if they went on to develop Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) (a more chronic bowel disorder). Researchers wanted to evaluate whether those who developed IBS had any psychological factors in common. And in fact, they did. Read more