Each year thousands of South Australians are told they have Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS); many are given little or no information about their condition and offered no treatment.
The symptoms of this syndrome are so varied that they include everything from burping and indigestion to severe chronic diarrhoea or constipation and excruciating abdominal pain. Every case is different and each one requires an individual approach to correct the cause of the symptoms. Linda takes time to thoroughly investigate each case getting to know the patient and creating an individual treatment plan for them.
Irritable Bowel Syndrome
Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) is not a disease. The term syndrome describes a cluster of symptoms common to most people with any functional digestive disorder. If your GP or specialist has told you that you may have IBS he or she has in fact put you in the “too hard basket”.
There is no single cause for IBS there are however many contributing factors that are completely individual to every sufferer. At the IBS Clinic we can identify the cause of your symptoms and begin to restore normal function to your digestive system within a few short weeks. While most sources will tell you that food allergy or intolerance play a very small role in this condition our clinical experience shows food reactivity is implicated in 100% of cases.
The first step in treating IBS is to identify food sensitivities; these are best detected using bio-compatibility testing.
Food Sensitivities are reactions that are not consistent and do not necessarily result in definite specific antibody responses in the blood. They are difficult to pinpoint by traditional blood tests and scratch tests. Reactivity is however mediated by the immune system and results in the release of inflammatory mediators like histamine.
Most people are not aware that histamine and other inflammatory mediators can migrate to any area of the body causing inflammation in glands, joints, muscles, tendons, mucous membranes and skin and are the direct cause of many health problems.
How do food sensitivities cause these problems?
Damage to the mucous membrane in the digestive tract is common; it can be caused by stress, infection, antibiotics or poor diet. This damage is sometimes known as "leaky gut" and can allow undigested food components (especially proteins) to get into the bloodstream.
Once these foreign particles have entered the bloodstream the immune system has a number of defence mechanisms to remove/neutralise them. If the immune system is overactive it will produce too many antibodies. These excess antibodies can then rupture mast cells that contain histamine. Excess histamine can cause inflammation anywhere in the body.
Once this inflammation accumulates in a certain area, we give that inflamed area a name. In the joints it can cause or aggravate arthritic pains.
In the respiratory tract it can cause or aggravate sinus, asthma and excess mucous. In the nervous system it can cause or aggravate headaches, migraine, depression, tiredness and add to ADHD. In the skin it can cause or aggravate rashes, eczema, psoriasis and hives.
The symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) are diverse because the inflammation can be anywhere along the length of the digestive tract. IBS is known as a functional disorder.
If the inflammation is in the stomach, stomach function will be disturbed so expect more symptoms like reflux, bloating, indigestion and gastritis. Improper digestion in the stomach and small intestine can result in constipation and flatulence. Inflammation in the large bowel can result in diarrhoea with mucous and perhaps blood in the stool.
While some foods will initiate this immune response others will aggravate the inflammation. The reaction and pain can be immediate and quite severe. The person often recognises this and may eliminate the offending food from their diet, bringing a measure of relief; however the underlying cause remains leaving them susceptible to the next aggravation.
Trying to identify foods that are actually causing the inflammation is much more difficult as the reaction is mediated by the immune system and may take up to 3 or 4 days.
The first step in treating IBS is to identify these food sensitivities using bio-compatibility testing. A small hair sample is taken and tested against over 500 common foods and household products. You will be alerted to exactly what foods are causing your symptoms & making you ill. Results are available within 5 to 7 working days.
Good digestion is essential to the healing process; this includes chewing your food well, good quality stomach acid & digestive enzymes, optimal intestinal & liver function, healthy bacterial growth, motility and tone of the muscular wall of the intestinal tract.
To speed healing we can supplement to improve these factors with:
Crohn’s Disease and Ulcerative Colitis
While these conditions are more serious the basic treatment strategies are the same. There is a stronger focus on supporting and balancing the immune system to re-establish normal function and to resolve inflammation.
Concession and children under 18 years: $95.00
Concession and children under 18 years $75.00
Private Health Rebates are available for all major funds.
Consultations are available on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday from 9.00am to 6.00pm and Saturday from 8.00am to 3.00pm