Patients with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) frequently suffer from symptoms that are characteristic of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), suggesting that comorbidity is not uncommon. It is not known, however, whether comorbid IBS in patients with GERD affects the efficacy of proton pump inhibitors (PPIs), which are typically used to treat patients with GERD.
A study conducted by William D. Chey, MD, and colleagues, presented at the 105th Annual Meeting of the American Gastroenterological Association and Digestive Disease Week (DDW), held from May 15 to 20, 2004, in New Orleans, La, examined the relationship between the presence of comorbid IBS and PPI efficacy in patients with GERD (n = 68). Results showed that patients with GERD and comorbid IBS have more severe GERD symptoms than do individuals with GERD alone. Also, patients with both GERD and IBS are more likely to experience residual GERD symptoms during PPI therapy than are those with GERD alone.