Original Research

A HOLISTIC GROUP PSYCHOTHERAPEUTIC INTERVENTION FOR THE TREATMENT OF IRRITABLE BOWEL SYNDROME AND ITS COMORBID DEPRESSION AND ANXIETY

C. M. Bush, H. G. Pretorius, A. D. Stuart
Health SA Gesondheid | Vol 7, No 2 | a643 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/hsag.v7i2.643 | © 2002 C. M. Bush, H. G. Pretorius, A. D. Stuart | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 30 November 2002 | Published: 30 November 2002

About the author(s)

C. M. Bush, Department of Psychology, Rand Afrikaans University, South Africa
H. G. Pretorius, Department of Psychology, Rand Afrikaans University, South Africa
A. D. Stuart, Department of Psychology, Rand Afrikaans University, South Africa

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Abstract

The aim of this study was to ascertain the effects of a holistic short-term group intervention in the treatment of Irritable Bowel Syndrome (/BS) with comorbid depression and anxiety. The sample consisted of 24 South African women who had been diagnosed with severe IBS. Furthermore, each participant had to have associated moderate to severe depression and anxiety. The group design was a pre-test, post-test control group design where the experimental group (n = 12) received group intervention and the members of the control group (n = 12) received no intervention until after completion of the research. All the participants completed the Functional Bowel Disorder Severity Index and the Depression and Anxiety subscales of the Personality Assessment Inventory before commencement of group therapy for Group 1 and one month after completion of this intervention. The effect of the intervention was determined by utilising comparative statistics. The findings indicate that holistic short-term group therapy results in significant improvement in terms of depreSSion and anxiety scores, but that IBS symptom severity remains unchanged. It is recommended that further research be conducted to ascertain whether holistic group therapy of a longer duration has a greater impact on the IBS symptom severity.

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