Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) is a chronic digestive disorder, which is characterized by abdominal pain, bloating, diarrhea and constipation periods. The etiology is unknown. Based on the different mechanisms in the etiology, treatment focuses on controlling symptoms. Due to the longtime of syndrome, inadequacy of current treatments, financial burden for patients and pharmacologic effects, several patients have turned to the use of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM). Complementary and alternative treatments for IBS include hypnosis, acupuncture, cognitive behavior therapy, yoga, and herbal medicine. Herbal medicines can have therapeutic effects and adverse events in IBS. The aim of this study was to evaluate the efficacy of herbal medicines in the control of IBS, and their possible mechanisms of action were reviewed. Herbal medicines are an important part of the health care system in many developing countries It is important for physicians to understand  some of the more common forms of CAM, because some herbs have side effects and some have interactions with conventional drugs. However herbal medicines may have therapeutic effects in IBS, and further clinical research is needed to assess its effectiveness and safety.


Keywords: Herbal medicine, Irritable Bowel Syndromes, Complementary Medicine
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