28 Nov 2014

Management strategies for abdominal bloating and distension

According to a recent CCS study, bloating and distension are among the most common gastrointestinal complaints reported by patients with functional gut disorders and by the general population.

These two complaints are also among the most prevalent of the severe symptoms reported
by patients with irritable bowel syndrome. Nonetheless, only a limited number of published studies have specifically addressed bloating.

The study notes that considerable progress has been made in understanding the pathogenesis of these symptoms over recent years, and multiple pathologic conditions are likely to contribute to their
development. Emerging evidence indicates that targeting colonic motility, gut flora, visceral sensitivity, and dietary intake is helpful in controlling such symptoms, although
few studies exist in which bloating is a primary endpoint.

Fortunately, new therapies involving dietary manipulation (low-FODMAP diet) have proved highly successful in relieving symptoms of bloating and abdominal distension, with efficacy rates well exceeding those of drug therapies, such as antibiotics and prokinetic agents.

However, it highlights that additional studies are needed to further elucidate the pathologic
mechanisms underlying bloating and distension, and targeted therapeutic studies are warranted.

Click here to read the full study. 

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