A one year follow-up of relaxation response meditation as a treatment for irritable bowel syndrome

Author: Keefer L//Blanchard EB
Center for Stress and Anxiety Disorders, University at Albany, State University of New York, 12203, USA. lannekeefer@aol.com
Conference/Journal: Behav Res Ther
Date published: 2002
Other: Volume ID: 40 , Issue ID: 5 , Pages: 541-6 , Word Count: 129

Ten of thirteen original participants with Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) participated in a one year follow-up study to determine whether the effects of Relaxation Response Meditation (RRM) on IBS symptom reduction were maintained over the long-term. From pre-treatment to one-year follow-up, significant reductions were noted for the symptoms of abdominal pain (p = 0.017), diarrhea (p = 0.045), flatulence (p = 0.030), and bloating (p = 0.018). When we examined changes from the original three month follow-up point to the one year follow-up, we noted significant additional reductions in pain (p = 0.03) and bloating (p = 0.04), which tended to be the most distressing symptoms of IBS. It appears that: (1) continued use of meditation is particularly effective in reducing the symptoms of pain and bloating; and (2) RRM is a beneficial treatment for IBS in the both short- and the long-term.