Low-FODMAP diet eases fecal incontinence symptoms

  • Menees SB & al.
  • Clin Transl Gastroenterol
  • 5 Jul 2019

  • International Clinical Digest
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Takeaway

  • Most patients with fecal incontinence (FI) and loose stools report reductions in symptoms after changing to a diet low in fermentable carbohydrates (low-FODMAP diet).

Why this matters

  • 1 in 7 patients reports an episode of FI during their lifetimes, with 1 in 20 reporting an episode during the past week.

Study design

  • Researchers analyzed the health records of patients with FI and loose stool (n=65; 87.7% women; 90.8% white; mean age, 61.9±14 years) who received instruction from a registered dietician in following a low-FODMAP diet.
  • Funding: None.

Key results

  • At baseline, 35.3% of patients had daily FI, 21.5% had weekly FI, and 4.6% had monthly FI.
  • 64.6% of patients (42/65) reported a reduction in FI symptoms with the low-FODMAP diet.
  • Of those patients, 35.7% had a complete response; 76.2% had a ≥75% reduction in FI symptoms; 88.1% had a 50% reduction.

Limitations

  • The study was retrospective, unblinded, and single-center, with a small sample and no control group, and subject to confounding effects of concomitant treatments.

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