This website proposes that intracellular magnesium deficiency explains the aetiology of IBS and that hypothyroidism due to acquired resistance to thyroid hormone (ARTH) is the cause in many cases. Logically, polydimethylsiloxane could be used to eliminate PBDEs and hence cure the hypothyroidism that causes the magnesium deficiency that causes IBS. A long-term trial of polydimethylsiloxane or simeticone would establish whether this is so. Such a study has been carried out!
Trial of Simeticone for IBS
Simeticone is marketed as a treatment for ‘trapped wind’ in IBS based on its anti-foaming properties. It seems most unlikely as everyone has foaming in the gut which is why simeticone is used for clear vision in colonoscopy. The sensation of bloating in IBS is caused by abnormal smooth muscle contraction, not by excess ‘wind’, foaming or not. It is unlikely that reducing the foaming would facilitate the release of intestinal gas. Perhaps the perceived benefit is due to the added sorbitol which produces a little hydrogen gas and it is the passing of this that gives the impression of released gas.
As can be seen from the graph below treatment with alverine citrate / simeticone produced remarkable results.
Note that the benefit increased over time, a placebo response usually diminishes over time. The effect is not due to releasing ‘trapped wind’, unless the wind has been trapped for six months! The treatment included alverine citrate an antispasmodic but the ‘usual treatment’ group also included antispasmodics.
This study of ‘on demand’ use of alverine citrate / simeticone produced dramatic results. If the benefit arises from PBDE elimination regular use of simeticone should produce more striking results. Given the enormous financial and personal costs of IBS and hypothyroidism an urgent prospective trial of simeticone treatment should be undertaken.
Meanwhile patients can trial Simeticone Treatment themselves at moderate cost.