What to Take for Irritable Bowel Syndrome?

As the causes of IBS i.e., irritable bowel syndrome is not known, so doctors focus on treating the symptoms of the problem. You can take the following medicines to control the symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome.


What to Take for Irritable Bowel Syndrome?



  1. You can take anti-diarrheal drugs for managing the symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome. When the condition of diarrhea becomes worse then taking medicine like Imodium helps in controlling irritable bowel syndrome with diarrhea to a considerable extent. In addition, there are many other medicines like colestipol, colesevelam, cholestyramine and more that helps in diarrhea but it causes bloating thus discomfort.
  2. You can also take fiber supplements prescribed by the doctor to control the symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome. Intake of fiber rich food or supplements like Metamucil and Citrucel helps in providing relief for irritable bowel syndrome with constipation. In case fiber supplements do not show any improvement in condition then doctors prescribe medicine that provides lubrication, like polyethylene glycol etc.
  3. Medications including anticholinergic & antispasmodic are also taken for irritable bowel syndrome. These medicines help patients to get relief from the highly painful bowel spasms. The medicines can also be suggested to the patients who suffer from bouts of diarrhea with irritable bowel syndrome. However, this makes constipation worse and can trigger other side effects that include difficulty in urination. Further, patient suffering from glaucoma should avoid this medicine to the extent possible as it does not well with them.
  4. Antidepressant medications can be taken for irritable bowel syndrome. Certain symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome vary from individual to individual. In case the symptoms comprise of pain or depression, then medical practitioners may recommend tricyclic antidepressant or SSRI (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor). These medicines not only helps in overcoming depression but it also helps in initiating neurological actions that control the normal functioning of intestines. For patients who suffer from irritable bowel syndrome with diarrhea and face abdominal pain but not depression then doctors prescribe very limited dose of tricyclic antidepressants. This medicine also has some side effects, such as drowsiness, vomit sensation, constipation and so on.
  5. Antibiotics are also prescribed for certain symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome. People who experience irritable bowel syndrome symptoms caused because of bacterial infection in the intestine are highly benefitted by taking antibiotic treatment. Most of the patients have positive results but research is still on this treatment method.
  6. Patients suffering from stress or depression as a result of irritable bowel syndrome can also opt for counseling for overcoming their stress.

What Medications to Take for Targeting Irritable Bowel Syndrome?

If everything else fails to show effect then you may take the below medicines for treating irritable bowel syndrome. There are two medicines which are prescribed by medical practitioners to irritable bowel syndrome patients:

  • Alosetron: Alosetron also known as Lotronex for irritable bowel syndrome helps to relax colon and lower downs the movement of waste from the lower bowel. FDA i.e. Food and Drug Administration had removed the medicine from the market for some time, but after sometime allowed the sale of alosetron again. But it was clearly mentioned By FDA that Alosetron should be given to patient only when patient does not respond to other medications given for treating diarrhea-predominant. Alosetron is approved only for female patients and not for male patients. This is so because there are many side effects of this medication and should only be given to patients when they fail to respond to any other treatment.
  • Lubiprostone: Lubiprostone for irritable bowel syndrome also known as helps in getting rid of the problem by increasing fluid secretion in small intestine of the patient. This improves and lubricates the passage of stool. The effectiveness of this medicine on males is yet to be proved.

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Pramod Kerkar

Written, Edited or Reviewed By:


Pain Assist Inc.

Last Modified On: July 12, 2017

This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer


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