Allergic Disease Linked To Irritable Bowel Syndrome

This article discusses the link between seasonal allergies, irritable bowel, and eczema. In Chinese medicine, the link between the skin, bowel, and respiratory system has long been recognized as a function of the paired organ system called Lung/Large Intestine. These two organ systems are intimately related. A problem with one organ in a paired system is often associated or will lead to a problem with its partner organ. Acupuncture have been treating this association for over 2,000 years.

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Allergic Disease Linked To Irritable Bowel Syndrome

ScienceDaily (Jan. 31, 2008) — Adults with allergy symptoms report a high incidence of Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), suggesting a link between atopic disorders and IBS according to a new study.

In a study of 125 adults, Rush University Medical Center’s Dr. Mary C. Tobin and colleagues found the likelihood of IBS was significantly higher in patients with seasonal allergic rhinitis (2.67 times), patients with allergic eczema (3.85 times), and patients with depression (2.56 times).

Irritable Bowel Syndrome, affecting 15 percent of the general population, is a cluster of symptoms including abdominal pain for 12 weeks within the past year, change in stool consistency or frequency, and relief of abdominal pain with defecation. Various findings suggest indirectly that allergen exposure may lead to IBS symptoms in some patients, but the frequency has not been studied.

“The reported presence of allergic dermatitis was highly correlated to the presence of IBS in our population,” investigators noted. “In atopic disease, allergic dermatitis is the first step of the ‘atopic march.’ In early childhood, AE (allergic eczema) is frequently associated with gastrointestinal dysfunction and food allergy. A clinical history of AE may be a useful marker for patients with gut hypersensitivity and atopic IBS.”

Asthma and Irritable Bowel Syndrome was reported by 12 of 41 patients (29 percent), which is similar to findings in a previous report. Authors propose that “this subgroup of IBS (atopic IBS) be considered separately from patients with IBS without atopic symptoms, because they may have distinct pathophysiologic features and may benefit from specific therapeutic interventions.”
This research was published in the January issue of Annals of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology, the scientific journal of the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology.

Adapted from materials provided by Rush University Medical Center.

Rush University Medical Center (2008, January 31). Allergic Disease Linked To Irritable Bowel Syndrome. ScienceDaily. Retrieved May 25, 2009, from http://www.sciencedaily.com /releases/2008/01/080130170325.htm

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