IBS Could Be Caused By Major Emotional Trauma, Study Finds
IBS, or irritable bowel syndrome, may be caused by major psychological and emotional events experienced over a lifetime, according to a new study.
Researchers analyzed 2,623 people and found that psychological and emotional traumas were more common among adults with IBS than among those without the condition, TIME reports.
The traumatic events included divorce, death of a loved one, house fire, car accident, and mental or physical abuse.
Dr. Yuri Saito-Loftus, of the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., was scheduled to present the findings Monday at the annual scientific meeting of the American College of Gastroenterology in Washington, D.C.
"While stress has been linked to IBS, and childhood abuse has been reported to be present in up to 50 percent of patients with IBS, at a prevalence twice that of patients without IBS, most studies of abuse have focused on sexual abuse with sparse detail and also have not looked at other forms of psychological trauma," said Saito-Loftus in an ACG news release.
"This is the first study that looks at multiple forms of trauma, the timing of those traumas, and traumas in a family setting," he added, reports TIME.
IBS is characterized by abdominal discomfort, bloating, constipation and diarrhea and is believed to be caused by changes in the nerves and muscles that control sensation and motility of the bowel.