Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is one of the most common diseases of the gastrointestinal tract.
It may represent a primary disorder of gastrointestinal motility, accompanied by motor dysfunction in various extraintestinal sites.
Previous studies have suggested that IBS associated with bronchial hyper-responsiveness and bronchial asthma might be more prevalent in IBS patients, than in control subjects.
In this study, researchers from Greece assessed the prevalence of IBS in a cohort of asthmatic patients.
The team evaluated 150 patients with bronchial asthma (71 male, 79 females, mean age 45 years). The compared these patients with 2 control groups; 130 patients with other pulmonary disorder, and 120 healthy subjects.
All subjects enrolled in the study completed the Greek version of the Bowel Disease Questionnaire (BDQ).
| IBS prevalence was significantly higher in asthmatics.|
Diagnosis of IBS was based on Rome II criteria.
The team found that IBS prevalence was significantly higher in asthmatics (41%), than in subjects with other pulmonary disorders (22%), and healthy subjects (21%).
For all subjects, the prevalence of IBS was significantly higher in females (36%), than in males (20%).
The IBS prevalence in asthmatic males was 30%, compared with controls. IBS in male patients with other pulmonary disorders and healthy male subjects was 15% and 14%, respectively.
In females, IBS prevalence was 52%, 28% and 27% for asthmatics, patients with other pulmonary disorders, and healthy subjects, respectively.
No asthma medications were associated with increased or decreased likelihood of IBS.
Dr Roussos’s team concluded, “Patients with bronchial asthma have an increased prevalence of IBS”.
“Further studies are needed to clarify the potential pathogenetic mechanisms underlying the association between IBS and asthma”.