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Systematic review: self-management support interventions for irritable bowel syndrome.

Aliment Pharmacol Ther. 2010 May 22;

Authors: Dorn SD

ABSTRACT Background: Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is an extremely common and costly condition. Because there is no cure, patients must be supported to manage their own condition. Aim: To systematically assess interventions used to support IBS patient self-management. Methods: A search of PubMed, EMBASE, CINAHL, and PsycINFO was performed to identify all studies that involved self-management support interventions for IBS. Studies that compared the self-management-related intervention to a control group were included. Results: Eleven studies that involved a total of 1,657 patients were included. For nearly all studies, the intervention was associated with statistically significant benefits. However, across studies there was significant heterogeneity in terms of sample size, diagnostic criteria, study setting, study design, primary outcome, statistical analyses, and study quality. Therefore, individual study results could not be statistically combined. Conclusions: Many self-management support interventions appear benefit patients with IBS. However, studies were limited by methodological flaws. Furthermore, feasibility in "real world" clinical practice is uncertain. Thus, practical self-management interventions that can be applied across various clinical settings should be developed, and then tested in well designed clinical trials.

PMID: 20497137 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]

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