Simple blood test to identify patient with Irritable Bowel Syndrome

Study identifies test for high levels of vinculin antibodies in patients with irritable bowel syndrome
For the first time, a simple blood test may be the best way to determine if a patient is suffering from Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), or another serious condition such as Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD,) according to Cedars-Sinai physician researcher Mark Pimentel, MD, lead author of a multicenter clinical trial.

Researchers conclusively identified a test for antibodies that form against a particular protein, vinculin, found in the guts of patients, many of whom suffered acute gastroenteritis at some point.

“This is a major breakthrough. It is the first test with a high specificity for IBS, likely based on a pathological mechanism of the disease,” said Pimentel, the director of the Cedars-Sinai GI Motility Program and the GI Motility Laboratory. Pimentel is co-author of the study and results were presented for the first time this week at the American College of Gastroenterology’s 78th Annual Scientific Meeting in San Diego, Calif.

In the study, 221 patients were evaluated; some had a diagnosis of IBS, some were diagnosed with IBD and some were healthy, with no symptoms. Anti-vinculin antibodies were significantly elevated in IBS patients as compared to those with IBD or those who were healthy.


New Clinic Specialized in Treating Irritable Bowel Syndrome Santa Monica

New Clinic Specialized in Treating Irritable Bowel Syndrome to Open in Santa Monica, SEATTLE, Oct. 15, 2013 /PRNewswire/ — The IBS Treatment Center, which specializes in treating irritable bowel syndrome, announced the opening of a new clinic in Santa Monica, California, in late October. Conveniently located next to the UCLA Medical Center, this new branch of the clinic will provide a progressive approach to digestive health as well as easy access to treatment for patients previously without adequate care. Since 2005, thousands of patients suffering from digestive problems have been traveling to Seattle from all corners of the world to be treated for this debilitating condition that affects approximately 15 percent of the population.

According to the clinic co-founder, Dr. Stephen Wangen, “We have seen many patients who have already been to five, even ten, gastroenterologists at top medical facilities around the country, but have received only standard testing and palliative care. The nature of irritable bowel syndrome is that there is no one-size-fits-all treatment, so we created a clinic that meets the need for highly specialized testing and provides each patient with customized treatment and superior care.”

Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) is second only to the common cold as a cause of worker absenteeism. It is a chronic condition that dramatically reduces quality of life and can be severe enough to put a patient into a permanently disabled state. Patients are frequently told that there is nothing wrong with them, or that it is all in their head. Without effective treatment patients usually stay sick for years.

“Standard care for many digestive problems, including most diarrhea, constipation, gas, bloating, and abdominal pain, leaves people with few options other than masking symptoms. Our patients desire a proactive approach to their digestive problems and are looking for real answers. They want treatment that actually solves the problem, and that is our commitment,” says Dr. Amy Nelson of the IBS Treatment Center in Santa Monica.

New Clinic Specialized in Treating Irritable Bowel Syndrome to Open in Santa Monica