Irritable Bowel Syndrome Channel
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Antidepressants for IBS

If lifestyle changes alone do not help relieve symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), there are several medications that your healthcare provider may recommend. One commonly prescribed treatment for IBS is antidepressant medicine.
When using antidepressants for IBS treatment, the medications are especially helpful if a person has underlying depression or anxiety. Both of these conditions can make IBS symptoms worse.
Some types of antidepressants used for treating irritable bowel syndrome include:
For treating IBS, the dosage of these medicines is usually much lower than that used to treat depression. It can take up to four weeks to see the benefit of these medicines. They may also help slow down movement through the intestines, which can be helpful for those people with diarrhea-predominant irritable bowel syndrome.
(Click IBS Medications for more information on treating irritable bowel syndrome with antidepressants. This article offers a closer look at how these and other medications can help relieve symptoms of IBS.)
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