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How Can Zoloft Help With Irritable Bowel Syndrome

Feb 29, 2008
Most people who suffer from irritable bowel syndrome are first introduced to an anti-spasmodic drug when they are initially diagnosed. However, you could have received a low dosage of an anti-diarrhea medication or antidepressant instead.

To be honest, there are a wide variety of different prescription medications that are available for IBS symptoms. However, the effectiveness of these drugs may vary from one patient to the next.

Trying to ascertain which drug will do the trick for you is something that will more than likely have to be done through trial and error. IBS medications are symptom-specific which means that they try to reduce such symptoms as constipation, painful abdominal spasms and diarrhea. If the first IBS drug that you try does not help in symptom reduction, then go on to another option.

Currently, many IBS patients seem to be quite frustrated with the lack of reliable, safe and effective therapies that will treat their symptoms. They would definitely like to see new treatment options that would have a tremendous impact on their problem, that is, the ability to prevent symptoms. That is a tall order to fill. For the time being, it is better to take something than have nothing at all. The only thing you can do is to keep those fingers crossed for new medication therapies that may be on the horizon.

For Irritable Bowel Syndrome Pain

Antidepressants that have been found to be effective in treating IBS can be delivered to the patient in a low dosage which can raise the threshold for pain for those who suffer from painful abdominal cramps. They are also able to decrease the rate of contractions in the gastrointestinal tract. This will change the bowel function in patients such as helping those who suffer from diarrhea as well as constipation.

Why would an antidepressant such as Zoloft help IBS sufferers? The antidepressant is meant to affect the uptake of a specific neurotransmitter called serotonin which is directly involved with the development of clinical depression. This occurs in the brain. It is interesting to note that the enteric nervous system of the intestines is rich with nerves containing large amounts of serotonin. Approximately 95% of all of the serotonin in a person's body is not found in the brain but in the intestines. Therefore, the effect of an antidepressant such as Zoloft on the brain is also felt in the intestines as well.

It is important to take note of the fact that the dosage of antidepressants used for IBS is a good deal lower than when it is used to treat depression. The doctor who is prescribing an antidepressant such as Zoloft for IBS should be familiar its use for this disease as different antidepressants can cause different side effects. At times, symptoms can worsen instead of subsiding.

SSRI antidepressants such as Prozac, Paxil, Celexa and Zoloft can serve to stimulate the production of serotonin and can sometimes trigger severe IBS attacks in those patients who suffer from diarrhea. They are very helpful for those patients who suffer from constipation. You may wish to discuss with your doctor the possibility of using Zoloft for your treatment of IBS.
About the Author
Article written by Jessica Bradbury, she has a site dedicated to bottom line information on IBS, including common diets for irritable bowel syndrome and the cure for irritable bowel syndrome.
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