Talking therapy can tackle IBS

Treatment for irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) can be improved by the use of online cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), Swedish research has shown.

Online CBT can help patients with IBS (Photograph: JH Lancy)
Online CBT can help patients with IBS (Photograph: JH Lancy)

A team from the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm showed that internet-delivered therapy generated health gains and was associated with cost-savings by reducing lost work time.

The researchers recruited 85 participants with IBS through self-referrals. Participants were assessed in interviews conducted over the phone and by self-report measures on the internet.

They were randomly assigned to receive either online therapy or to attend a discussion forum, and data on their economic situation was collected over one year.

The researchers estimated that around £10,000 could be saved for each case successfully treated.

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