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Journal of Obesity
Volume 2018, Article ID 3732753, 9 pages
Research Article

A Conservative Weight Loss Intervention Relieves Bowel Symptoms in Morbidly Obese Subjects with Irritable Bowel Syndrome: A Prospective Cohort Study

1Department of Surgery, Innlandet Hospital Trust, Gjøvik, Norway
2Unit for Applied Clinical Research, Department of Clinical and Molecular Medicine, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Trondheim, Norway
3Regional Centre for Child and Youth Mental Health and Child Welfare, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Trondheim, Norway
4Department of Research, Innlandet Hospital Trust, Brumunddal, Norway

Correspondence should be addressed to Martin Aasbrenn; moc.liamg@nnerbsaa.nitram

Received 23 June 2017; Revised 18 December 2017; Accepted 26 December 2017; Published 1 March 2018

Academic Editor: Aron Weller

Copyright © 2018 Martin Aasbrenn et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Background. Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is common in subjects with morbid obesity; the effect of weight loss programs on bowel symptoms is largely unknown. Methods. This prospective cohort study explored bowel symptoms, health scores, and biomarkers in subjects with morbid obesity during a six-month-long conservative weight loss intervention. Bowel symptoms were assessed with IBS-severity scoring system (IBS-SSS) and Gastrointestinal Symptom Rating Scale-IBS. Changes in all variables and associations between the changes in bowel symptoms and the other variables were analysed. Results. Eighty-eight subjects (81% females) were included. Body mass index was reduced from 42.0 (3.6) to 38.7 (3.5) (). IBS-SSS was reduced from 116 (104) to 81 (84) (). In all, 19 out of 25 variables improved significantly. In subjects with and without IBS at inclusion, the improvement in IBS-SSS was 88 (95% CI 55 to 121) and 10 (95% CI −9 to 29), respectively. Improved bowel symptoms were associated with improved subjective well-being, sense of humour, and vitamin D and negatively associated with reduced body mass index. Conclusion. Body mass index and health scores improved during a conservative weight loss intervention. Subjects with IBS before the intervention had a clinically significant improvement in bowel symptoms.