A GAME-CHANGER: Multidisciplinary Treatment for IBS and Functional GI Disorders

A GAME-CHANGER: Multidisciplinary Treatment for IBS and Functional GI Disorders

The Tummy Clinic | November 27th, 2023

Functional gastrointestinal disorders affect millions of people worldwide, causing chronic and often debilitating symptoms. These disorders, which include conditions like irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and functional dyspepsia, can have a huge impact on a person’s quality of life. Traditionally, standard gastroenterologist treatment has been the go-to approach for managing IBS and functional GI disorders. However, a recent study titled “Standard gastroenterologist versus multidisciplinary treatment for functional gastrointestinal disorders (MANTRA)” by Basnayake et al. (2020), challenges this conventional approach. In this blog post, we’ll explore the findings of this groundbreaking study and discuss the potential implications for managing IBS and functional GI disorders.

What exactly is MANTRA?

The MANTRA study aimed to compare the efficacy of standard gastroenterologist treatment with a multidisciplinary approach for IBS and functional GI disorders. The multidisciplinary treatment approach involved a team of healthcare professionals, including gastroenterologists, dieticians, psychologists, and physiotherapists, working together to provide comprehensive care.

Study Design and Participants

The study was an open-label, single-center, randomized controlled trial conducted with 436 participants diagnosed with functional GI disorders. The participants were randomly assigned to either the standard gastroenterologist or multidisciplinary treatment group.

So…What was discovered?

The findings of the study revealed several key points that challenge the traditional approach to IBS and functional GI disorders management:

  • Symptom Improvement: Participants in both groups experienced symptom improvement. However, the multidisciplinary treatment group showed a much more significant and sustained improvement compared to the standard gastroenterologist treatment group.
  • Quality of Life: Participants in the multidisciplinary treatment group reported a greater improvement in their overall quality of life compared to the standard treatment group.
  • Psychological Factors: The multidisciplinary treatment approach addressed psychological factors, such as anxiety and depression, often associated with functional GI disorders. This comprehensive approach contributed to better outcomes for participants.
  • Patient Satisfaction: In the multidisciplinary treatment group, participants reported higher levels of satisfaction with their care compared to those in the standard treatment group.

Let’s talk about the implications!

The findings of the MANTRA study have remarkable implications for the management of IBS and functional GI disorders:

  • Holistic Approach: The multidisciplinary treatment approach recognizes that functional GI disorders, including IBS, are complex conditions influenced by various factors, including physical, psychological, and dietary aspects. By incorporating multiple healthcare professionals, this approach offers a more holistic and personalized approach to patient care.
  • Tailored Treatment: The multidisciplinary team can tailor treatment plans to address individual patient needs. This personalized approach may lead to more effective symptom management and improved quality of life.
  • Addressing Psychological Factors: The study highlights the importance of addressing psychological factors in managing IBS and other functional GI disorders. By integrating psychologists and therapists into the treatment team, patients can receive the necessary support to manage anxiety, depression, and stress-related symptoms.
  • Enhanced Patient Experience: The multidisciplinary approach promotes a patient-centered care model, ensuring patients feel heard, understood, and supported throughout their treatment journey. This can improve patient satisfaction and engagement in their own care.

To Sum It All Up

The MANTRA study challenges the traditional approach to managing IBS and other functional GI disorders by demonstrating the superiority of a multidisciplinary treatment approach. By incorporating various healthcare professionals, this approach offers patients a more comprehensive and personalized care plan. The findings suggest that addressing physical, psychological, and dietary aspects of functional GI disorders can lead to better symptom management and improved quality of life. Healthcare providers should consider adopting a multidisciplinary approach to IBS and functional GI disorder management, providing patients with the best possible care and outcomes.

The Tummy Clinic is Here to Help

We recommend considering The Tummy Clinic to further enhance your journey towards better gastrointestinal health. At The Tummy Clinic, we specialize in providing multidisciplinary care for IBS and functional GI disorders. Our team of experienced Naturopathic Doctors, Dietitians, and Psychotherapists work together to provide personalized treatment plans — addressing the physical, psychological, and dietary aspects of functional GI disorders. We’re here to help you experience the benefits of a holistic approach, improved symptom management, and enhanced quality of life. Start your journey towards better digestive health with The Tummy Clinic today! Contact us to schedule your appointment and discover the comprehensive care that can transform your well-being.

Source: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S2468125320302156

Frequently Asked Questions

Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is characterized by a variety of symptoms, including cramping, abdominal pain, bloating, gas, and diarrhea or constipation, or both. IBS is a chronic condition that you’ll need to manage long term. The cause is not well understood.

There is no definitive test to diagnose IBS. IBS is diagnosed after your doctor has reviewed your symptoms and occasionally ordered tests to rule out other conditions.

Visits at the Tummy Clinic are not covered by OHIP or your provincial health care system, however, most extended healthcare plans cover many aspects of the care you will receive here, such as visits to Naturopathic Doctors, Dietitians, Social Workers or Psychotherapists. Check your benefits package or contact your insurance company for more information.