Curbside Consultation in IBS: 49 Clinical Questions

Brian E. Lacy, PhD, MD

Question 32: What is the Role of Fiber in Patients with IBS? (continued)

Anil Minocha, MD, FACP, FACG; Ankur Sheth, MD, MPH, FACP, CNSC

It is common practice to recommend a high-fiber diet or fiber supplements to irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) patients; however, there is conflicting evidence regarding the efficacy of this practice. Major limitations in previous studies that have evaluated the role of fiber in IBS patients include heterogeneous patient populations, a strong placebo effect, and nonstandardized outcome measures. In addition, most of the trials have been done in secondary or tertiary-care settings, in spite of the fact that most patients with IBS are predominantly treated in primary care. Fiber can be classified…