Acupuncture for Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)

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Acupuncture for Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)

Acupuncture for Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)

Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) is the catch-all term used to describe gastro-intestinal troubles that Western medicine cannot find a reason for.  We’ve had a lot of patients recently come to us with ‘IBS’ having been to their doctor, referred to a gastric specialist, been through gastroscopies and endoscopies and had full blood work done – with the end result being ‘you’ve got irritable bowel syndrome’.

Medical Treatment of IBS

Western medical treatment of IBS usually includes substantial diet modification (e.g. FODMAP or gluten-free diet), anti-diarrheal or antispasmodic medications or sometimes as a last-ditch effort, patients are prescribed anti-depressants.  The main issue here is that because the Western medicine cause of IBS is unknown, the treatment focuses only on attempting to relieve symptoms rather than treating the (unknown) root cause of the problem.

Chinese Medicine Treatment of IBS

Chinese medicine knows what causes IBS and how to treat it.  The main culprit is usually the liver.  The liver is highly effected by stress and emotion, which is why Western medicine links stress to IBS and prescribes anti-depressants to try to alleviate symptoms.  The other culprit is the large intestine itself. Specific acupuncture melbourne and Chinese herbs are used to help relieve the symptoms of IBS, mainly pain.

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