New treatment guidelines released today in Gastroenterology outline a personalized approach for treating patients with approved drug treatments for irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) with constipation (IBS-C) or IBS with diarrhea (IBS-D). IBS is one of the most common disorders of both intestines, affecting up to 35 million Americans.
The guidelines outline, for the first time, when to use newly introduced IBS drugs, when to rely on old drugs approved by the FDA and when to use over-the-counter drugs. With more treatments available, physicians can tailor a personalized approach based on the symptoms a patient with IBS is experiencing.
We have so many treatment options, we can now take a targeted treatment approach to patient symptoms. It's very important for patients to be open about their IBS symptoms and just as important for gastroenterologists to set realistic expectations for this chronic disease to ensure the best quality of life for their IBS patients."
Shahnaz Sultan, MD, Author, AGAF
Advice for patients with IBS: prioritize lifestyle modifications (including exercise, sleep, stress reduction) and dietary changes (such as increasing fiber or the low-FODMAP diet) prior to seeking an IBS specialist, such as a gastroenterologist, for advanced treatment options. When you do speak to a provider, be clear on your symptoms to help your doctor determine the medication that is right for you.
Read the AGA Clinical Guidelines on the Management of Irritable Bowel Syndrome with Constipation (IBS-C) and Irritable Bowel Syndrome with Diarrhea (IBS-D) to review both sets of recommendations that detail specific patient scenarios and best treatment options.
Chang, L., et al. (2022) AGA Clinical Guidelines on the Management of Irritable Bowel Syndrome with Constipation (IBS-C). Gastroenterology. doi.org/10.1053/j.gastro.2022.04.016.