n Health SA Gesondheid - The role of abuse in the development of irritable bowel syndrome : a comparative study : research

Volume 8, Issue 4
  • ISSN : 1025-9848
  • E-ISSN: 2071-9736



Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) is defined as a chronic relapsing functional bowel disorder of unknown causes which is characterised by attacks of abdominal pain and change of bowel habit resulting in diarrhoea or constipation or both. The prevalence of IBS in the general population of Western countries is 14-24% of women and more commonly found in women than in men. Stress can exacerbate IBS and a significant association between IBS and sexual abuse and physical abuse in childhood and adulthood has been found in overseas studies. No such studies have however been conducted in South Africa. The role that abuse may play in the development of IBS forms the cornerstone of the present study. The participants consisted of 79 adult women aged over 20 years. They were grouped into four categories: abused women with IBS; abused women without IBS; non-abused women without IBS; and non-abused women with IBS. A statistical analysis was carried out to ascertain if there were any differences between the groups in terms of the sub-type of IBS, as well as the types of abuse suffered. The groups were also compared with regard to the levels of anger and anxiety experienced.

Prikkelbare Dermsindroom (PDS) word gedefinieer as 'n chroniese, herhalende, funksionele ingewandsversteuring wat gekenmerk word deur aanvalle van buikpyn en 'n verandering in ingewandsgewoontes, wat diarree of hardlywigheid, of beide, tot gevolg het. PDS kom voor by 14 - 24% van die vroulike populasie in Westerse lande en word meer by vroue as by mans aangetref. Volgens die verbandhoudende literatuur kan stres PDS vererger en 'n betekenisvolle verband is gevind tussen PDS en sowel seksuele as fisiese mishandeling in die kinderjare en volwassenheid. Die rol wat mishandeling kan speel in die ontwikkeling van PDS vorm die kern van die huidige studie. 'n Statistiese analise is gedoen om te bepaal of daar enige verskille tussen die groepe bestaan in terme van die subtipe van PDS wat voorkom, sowel as die tipes mishandeling wat ervaar is. Die groepe is ook vergelyk in terme van hulle vlakke van woede en angs.

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