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Do birth control pills affect irritable bowel syndrome?

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So far, research suggests they don't. Scientists have found no difference in symptoms between women with IBS who are on the pill and those who aren’t. Both groups saw a drop in the sex hormones before their periods started.

 Some experts think that continuous birth control -- where hormone levels don’t change and you skip periods altogether -- may ease IBS symptoms. We’ll need more research to know for sure.

From: Do Your Hormones Affect IBS? WebMD Medical Reference

SOURCES:

National Digestive Diseases Information Clearinghouse: “Irritable Bowel Syndrome.”

UNC Center for Functional GI & Motility Disorders: “Hormones and IBS.”  

Patricia Raymond, MD, associate professor of clinical internal medicine, Eastern Virginia Medical School; spokesperson, American College of Gastroenterology.

Richard Benya, MD, gastroenterologist; professor of medicine, Loyola University Medical School.

Mulak, A. , March 2014. World Journal of Gastroenterology

Bharadwaj, S. , March 2015. Gastroenterology Report

Chen, T.  , January 1995. American Journal of Physiology

Heitkemper, M. , supplemental issue, 2009. Gender Medicine

Chang, L. , December 2001. The American Journal of Gastroenterology 

Cleveland Clinic Foundation: “Menstrual Cycle.”

Olafsdottir, L. , December 2011. Gastroenterology Research and Practice

Triadafilopoulos, G. , 1998. Women Health

Reviewed by Nayana Ambardekar on September 15, 2019

SOURCES:

National Digestive Diseases Information Clearinghouse: “Irritable Bowel Syndrome.”

UNC Center for Functional GI & Motility Disorders: “Hormones and IBS.”  

Patricia Raymond, MD, associate professor of clinical internal medicine, Eastern Virginia Medical School; spokesperson, American College of Gastroenterology.

Richard Benya, MD, gastroenterologist; professor of medicine, Loyola University Medical School.

Mulak, A. , March 2014. World Journal of Gastroenterology

Bharadwaj, S. , March 2015. Gastroenterology Report

Chen, T.  , January 1995. American Journal of Physiology

Heitkemper, M. , supplemental issue, 2009. Gender Medicine

Chang, L. , December 2001. The American Journal of Gastroenterology 

Cleveland Clinic Foundation: “Menstrual Cycle.”

Olafsdottir, L. , December 2011. Gastroenterology Research and Practice

Triadafilopoulos, G. , 1998. Women Health

Reviewed by Nayana Ambardekar on September 15, 2019

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How do estrogen and progesterone affect irritable bowel syndrome?

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