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Effects of a health program comprising reassurance, diet management, probiotics administration and regular exercise on symptoms and quality of life in patients with irritable bowel syndrome

Magdy El-Salhy, Elli Lillebø, Astrid Reinemo, Lillian Salmelid, Trygve Hausken
  • Magdy El-Salhy
    Institute for internal medicine, Universirty of Bergen/Stord Helse-Fonna hospital, Norway, Norway | magdy.el-salhy@helse-fonna.no
  • Elli Lillebø
    Stord Helse-fonna Hospital, Norway
  • Astrid Reinemo
    Stord Helse-fonna Hospital, Norway
  • Lillian Salmelid
    Stord Helse-fonna Hospital, Norway
  • Trygve Hausken
    Haukeland university Hospital, Bergen, Norway

Abstract

Effects of a health program comprising reassurance and patient education, diet management, administration of probiotics and regular exercise on symptoms and quality of life in patients with IBS were investigated. A total of 143 patients (95% women and 5% men), with an average age of 32 years (range, 18-58 years), were included in the study. Ninety-six of these patients had diarrhea and 47 had constipation as the predominant symptom. The patients went through a program combining reassurance and IBS education, guidance in diet management, intake of probiotics, and regular exercise. The patients were asked to complete the Birmingham IBS symptom score questionnaire, the SF-36 questionnaire and the IBS-quality of life (IBS-QoL) questionnaire before starting the program and three, six, 12 and 24 months after completing the program. The total score of symptoms, as well as all the 3 dimensions (pain, diarrhea and constipation), were diminished significantly at all observation times after completing the program. The total score of quality of life, as assessed by the SF-36 questionnaire and by the IBS-QoL questionnaire, was significantly improved at all observation times after completing the program. This improvement included all health concepts of the SF-36 and all the domains of the IBS-QoL except physical and mental role limitations, food avoidance and sexual relations. There was no statistical difference between patients with IBS with diarrhea- or constipation-predominant symptoms. Combining reassurance and patient education, diet management, probiotics administration and regular exercise in a health program improves symptoms and quality of life in patients with IBS.

Keywords

IBS; symptom score; quality of life, probiotics; reassurance

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Submitted: 2009-12-18 08:20:35
Published: 2010-06-08 09:34:23
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Copyright (c) 2010 Magdy El-Salhy, Elli Lillebø, Astrid Reinemo, Lillian Salmelid, Trygve Hausken

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