What is the pharmacologic approach in treating IBS?
Pharmacologic treatment of IBS has traditionally been aimed at treating and preventing the predominant symptoms, such as diarrhea, constipation, and abdominal pain. Pharmacologic treatment options for patients who report diarrhea as their predominant symptom include antidiarrheals, such as loperamide, diphenoxylate, cholestyramine, or alosetron. For patients who report constipation as their predominant symptom, treatment options include fiber, osmotic laxatives (i.e., sorbitol and lactulose), polyethylene glycol, lubiprostone, or linaclotide. For patients who report pain as the predominant symptom, treatment options include antispasmodics (i.e., dicyclomine), hyoscyamine, antidepressants (i.e., a tricyclic antidepressant [TCA] or a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor [SSRI])