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Randomized Trial Comparing 2 Fiber Regimens for the Reduction of Symptoms of Constipation

Hull, Margaret A. MSN; McIntire, Donald D. PhD; Atnip, Shanna D. MSN; Dreadin, Julie MSN; Nihira, Mikio A. MD; Drewes, Peter G. MD; Schaffer, Joseph I. MD; Wai, Clifford Y. MD

Female Pelvic Medicine & Reconstructive Surgery:
doi: 10.1097/SPV.0b013e31821a8b4d
Original Articles
Journal Club
Abstract

Objective: This study aimed to compare the effects of a special bowel recipe with psyllium on symptoms of constipation.

Methods: Women with symptoms of constipation were randomized to 6 weeks of either psyllium or a special bowel recipe. Patients completed a constipation scoring questionnaire and recorded characteristics of each bowel movement.

Results: A total of 53 participants completed prestudy and poststudy constipation scoring questionnaires. Both groups demonstrated improvement in constipation scores (psyllium: 13.9 ± 4.7 to 9.0 ± 4.6, P < 0.001; recipe: 13.6 ± 4.1 to 8.5 ± 5.0, P < 0.001). Mean differences in pretreatment and posttreatment constipation scores were not statistically different between the 2 groups.

Subjects taking the bowel recipe strained only 20% of the time compared with those using psyllium who strained 57% of the time (P = 0.007). Other symptoms improved from baseline, but the majority was not different between treatment groups.

Conclusions: The bowel recipe demonstrated no significant difference in efficacy to pure fiber.

In Brief

A bowel recipe consisting of wheat bran, applesauce, and prune juice is an inexpensive and efficacious alternative to pure fiber for the treatment of constipation.

Author Information

From the Division of Female Pelvic Medicine and Reconstructive Surgery, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, TX.

Reprints: Clifford Y. Wai, MD, Division of Female Pelvic Medicine and Reconstructive Surgery, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, 5323 Harry Hines Blvd, Dallas, TX 75390-9032. E-mail: Clifford.Wai@UTSouthwestern.edu.

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