Has anyone had success with being put on a low dose anti depressant for their IBS?

I have IBS. I'm 30 and i've had it since I was at least 15 but probably before that, I just don't remember. I have extreme constipation, gas and I bloat every single day. I follow a low fodmap diet with extra exclusions. I've had every test you can think of, seen a gastroenterologist and have a dietician. I'm told I don't have a gluten sensitivity but being gluten free helps a little. I don't eat dairy and it helps a little but I haven't been tested whether I have a lactose sensitivity or not. Nothing has ever helped stop the bloat. I wake up flat and look pregnant by the time I go to bed. If I eat too many carbs than I don't even wake up flat. Sometimes I go up a dress size from the bloat and cant fit into my own clothes. I have lived with it everyday and it means I cant lead a normal life. I'm uncomfortable, hate myself, always worried about food. The only thing that has helped the tiniest bit is a very low carb diet. But all it does is mean ill wake up flat. I'm still bloated by the end of the day. And I cant sustain it because i'm fairly active and I got Adrenal Fatigue from going low carb.

Anyway that's just a bit about me. My actual question to you is has anyone had success with being put on a low dose anti depressant for their IBS? My Doctor has prescribed Escitalopram for me and I have been on it a week so far. No improvements yet but she says it can take up to six weeks to work.

27 Replies

  • Have you been tested for SIBO? Small intestine bacterial overgrowth? It is a breath test.

  • No I haven't. Do I just ask my Doctor or?

  • My gastroenterologist sent me for a test. I did it privately and it cost about £195.

  • I have tried them but made no difference to me just made me tired.have you tried magnesium citrate tablets for your constipation they are excellent I take 400-500mg before bed.you need to experiment to find correct dose that suits you.x

  • Hi there, where do you get your magnesium citrate from please?

  • Hi.i get mine from amazon and take the solgar magnesium citrate.hope this helps you.

  • A Naturopath put me on Magnesium morning and night but it was the powder form and it made no difference. Are the tablets different?

  • I don't know about the powder but the tablet form are the only thing that has helped me .they don't cure all ibs symptoms but certainly help with the constipation.I'm still searching for items to help other symptoms think I've tried every product I've ever heard about.ibs is a living nightmare.I take the solgar brand magnesium citrate.hope this helps you.x

  • Yes, I was proscribed Amitriptyline for abdominal pains which have now ceased. Although I haven't been given a definite diagnosis of IBS as it could be neuropathy from my diabetes. It is most likely IBS.

  • I have IBS- C and Ami has helped however anything past 10 Mg made me a zombie the next day and I have weird dreams as well

  • Yes I'm on a small dose of anti anxiety / anti depressant and I think it's helping

  • Thanks for replying. Hopefully I have some luck with them.

  • I am also on amtriptyline, 75mg a day-& it really helps with the pain& other symptoms, i have tried coming off it before& my pain was dreadful, so i definitely know it works. X

  • Thanks for replying. Hopefully I have some luck with them also :)

  • How can you be on such a strong dose without sleeping night and day? I guess with dreadful pain anything works.

  • Haha, I think I'm used to it now, I do feel a bit spacey & sleepy after I have it in the evening, but feel fine the next day x

  • Hi there you sound just like me, I nod up looking me months pregnant by end of day.mwhat has helped is galic and parsley tablets x 2 per day, probiotic every day and for a while I went on hydrochloric acid tablets from a good pharmacy 1 after each meal. Most doctors said I probably had too much acid but it was the reverse. Have you had our gallbladder removed? Are you worse after eating fats or meat? Wishing you well.

  • Hi,I've took a multitude of antidepressants,they don't work at all for me,but don't make my mistake by staying on something your hopeing will work one day.

    If I were you I'd give it two months if you feel no better give them up ,don't keep persevere then end up like me struggling to come of something that don't work.

    Just give it a chance.

  • Yes I was on over for over 8 years... It made a difference. It slows the gi track and can help with cramping and pain.

  • Thanks for replying. Hopefully I have some luck with them :)

  • I have the same problem you have. I am in pain every day. I have been on a low dose of Cmybalta-60 mgs. It hasn't helped me. I hope it helps you.

  • I have the same issues as you. I'm 32 now and was diagnosed a couple of years ago with pretty much the same history as you with tests, gastroenterologist, dietitian etc. I have tried fodmaps etc. however nothing has really worked effectively (I also have ibs-c). It is easy to cut out the bad trigger foods however generally I just exist with a moderate level of discomfort.

    I have not had success with anything the Dr prescribed. I was prescribed a tricyclic antidepressant after he diagnosed me with IBS. I would like to say it worked however the side effects cancelled out any relief I might have gotten. Also being on prescribed medicine for the rest of my life and it not really being very effective didn't seem worth it.

    I have started making my own epsom salt tablets and having at least a teaspoon each day. This is the only thing that has helped me go to the bathroom more regularly and feel less bloated. For bad bloating I take de-gas or mintec.

  • Have you tried magnesium citrate tablets.they don't cure all ibs symptoms I suffer from every one plus diverticula disease but they usually help with the constipation.x

  • hi

    im taking low dose amytripiline. can help ibs but also can cause constipation and tiredness so may not be best for you.i find wineze and buscopan best for bloating relief.



  • Be careful with it since I found anything over 10 mg at night left me really groggy the next day. I also have been " zoned out" a word a doctor used since I found myself in that kind of a state

    Good luck!

  • Thanks to everyone who replied above. Its now been about 5 weeks since I was started on the low dose anti depressant. I have had some luck with it helping with my bloat and constipation which is great however the side effects that it causes in my head are annoying. Im hoping they go away.

  • i have cronic consitpation lasy bowel .i also have ostomy taking consella 145 mg some out put not much anyone try it?

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