Irritable bowel syndrome

What is irritable bowel syndrome and PTSD?

Irritable bowel syndrome is a common gastrointestinal disorder. It is characterised by chronic abdominal pain and a change in the frequency or form of stool. Its pathophysiology remains poorly understood but is thought to involve dysregulation of the hypothalamic–pituitary–adrenal axis, neuroendocrine alterations, and emotional hypersensitivity. Mechanisms that might underlie any association between post-traumatic stress syndrome and irritable bowel syndrome include hyperarousal, an exaggerated response to stress, and hypervigilance to bodily sensations.

What is the evidence for irritable bowel syndrome?

Moderate quality evidence finds a medium-sized effect of increased rates of irritable bowel syndrome in people with PTSD. There were also increased rates of irritable bowel syndrome in people exposed to trauma who do not have the disorder compared to people who were not exposed to trauma.

August 2021

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Last updated at: 1:48 am, 9th October 2021
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Orange - Topic summary is being compiled.
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