There is little data on pediatric use of IBS treatments, but a small study of 59 patients found the VSL #3 probiotic might improve quality of life in children with the disease. The study, presented at last week's ACG meeting, demonstrated the probiotic was safe and that it resulted in a significant improvement in symptoms over a placebo.
Heart transplant survivor Amy Silverstein writes about the complex decisions and varying emotions associated with chronic illness in the book "Sick Girl." She says, "I have not lived a well day since my surgery -- not one -- and this is a difficult truth to bear. And sometimes, on the very rare occasion, it wears me down to the point of wondering if the illness and struggle are worth it."
Data from a Phase II trial show rifaximin may significantly improve quality-of-life symptoms in patients with irritable bowel syndrome with diarrhea. Researchers, presenting at the ACG annual meeting, found that the rifaximin group showed greater improvements over the placebo group in overall quality-of-life scores as well as subscale scores for body image, relationships, dysphoria and health concerns.
The U.K.'s National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence is reviewing a proposal that would limit coverage by the National Health Service of costly medicines for inflammatory bowel diseases, restricting use to patients whose condition worsens. Patients said preventing them from getting such drugs regularly would put them in a lifetime of pain. The National Association for Colitis and Crohn's Disease and other groups also oppose the proposal.