User Reviews for Amitriptyline to treat Irritable Bowel Syndrome
Amitriptyline has an average rating of 8.5 out of 10 from a total of 137 reviews for the off-label treatment of Irritable Bowel Syndrome. 84% of reviewers reported a positive experience, while 9% reported a negative experience.
Reviews for Amitriptyline
"I still have yet to receive a solid diagnosis on why I am nauseated 24/7 but in the meantime amitriptyline has been a miracle drug. I know a few people who have also used it and experienced significant side effects, however, on 10mg I haven't noticed a single side effect. I went from puking daily, visiting the hospital every other week to eating literally anything I wanted. I have tried tecta, PPI's, probiotics, elimination diets, everything you can imagine. I can even drink coffee in the morning now!!! Literally changed my life, overnight. I now can work, without worrying about sick days. Please, please, take a chance with this. If it works for you, it's a miracle drug."
"After suffering for many years with IBS and trying almost everything from cholestipol to Fodmap I was feeling hopeless. As I got older it was worse. Lucky to have found a brilliant gastro who prescribed low dose Amitriptyline and within six weeks of starting my IBS 80% better. I feel like my life has been given back to me. I have some minor side effects but think for me it’s a miracle. In time my dose might be increased and perhaps I will be even better. No matter I am so happy now."
Frequently asked questions
"Since being on amitriptyline my IBS symptoms are pretty much not there. I used to be in horrific pain all day everyday and would even feel hot, dizzy and in so much pain that I would actually faint off the toilet. I didn't want to leave the house and IBS literally took over my life. I never write any reviews like this but if I can help even just one IBS sufferer then it's worth it. I gradually increased my dose to 50mg per night. Seems like a lot but it's worth it in order to live a normal 21 year old girls life. For the first week I did get the side effects (tired, dry mouth, a bit faint) but after that I felt absolutely fine again. Please try this drug, I didn't think it would work but it did and I have honestly never been happier!"
"After years of suffering from IBS-D, trying multiple prescriptions, diets, over the counter meds, etc., I heard about the use of antidepressants to treat it. My GP prescribed Zoloft but after reading about side effects and personal accounts from other IBS-D sufferers, I decided the risk outweighed the reward. Continued doing research and came across posts about amitriptyline. Sounded promising, side effects of constipation/sleepiness were very appealing. I've also been dealing with intermittent sleep anxiety and insomnia. GI doc agreed to prescribe amitriptyline. Starting dose was 10mg/night. Didn't notice any change or side effects or improvement. Bumped it up to 20mg and definitely noticed a difference. BMs were improving, anxiety and stress levels were way down, sleeping great. Started to feel like my old self again. Been taking 25mg since Nov 2019 and have had 0 negative side effects. Highly recommend this drug amitriptyine to those suffering from IBS-D whose main trigger is anxiety."
Are you taking this medicine?
"I take amitripyline 30 to 35 mg for IBS- C since being diagnosed 10 yrs ago. Truely a miracle drug for me. The pain, nausea and bloating was unbearable and ruining my life. Amitripyline took care of it all! Took about 4 to 6 weeks for full effect and felt pretty spacey and almost like a drunken state until my body adjusted. But was well worth it and would highly recommend . I take at bedtime and drowsiness not an issue. Dry mouth is tolerable. Wish more drs would prescribe for IBS and start patients on sooner to decrease patients suffering."
"I don’t know where I’d be if I hadn’t found these reviews. After 17 months of daily pain & worsening diarrhea (which started out of the blue), I stumbled across this page & asked my gastroenterologist to prescribe this med. Within 10 days on 10 mg my pain was gone. After increasing to 20 mg I started having normal bowel movements most days. I did just have a bad 4 day flare up so I’m increasing to 30 mg. In the last year I’ve had endoscopy, colonoscopy, cat scan, swallowing study, fecal & blood tests, & gene testing. I’ve tried Imodium, Bentyl, Pepto, iron pills, fiber & gas X, acupuncture, probiotics, meditation. Nothing worked. I have never been suicidal but had been wondering (at age 49) if all my good years were behind me & life wasn’t worth living. I hope my dose increase helps. If so, this is a miracle drug. The dry mouth & slight fatigue are worth it."
"I've had ibs d, endometriosis and chronic pain for fifteen years. I went on amitriptyline after reading this message board, with the deepest desperation but also complete disbelief that it would help me also. Three months on and I hardly have any pain, maybe once in the last month (I used to have chronic pain every day). I can't believe it. It's a miracle, my life is changed, I can live. I don't know why no doctors ever suggested it all the times I went to my GP crying in pain, it was never mentioned, I just stumbled on this message board when researching. It's also really helped my diarrhoea, basically disappeared compared with having to take an Imodium every other day and buscopan all the time. Thank you for everyone who commented on here before me and helped me on my journey to a pain free life :). You saved my life."
"I have IBS for 16 years.Too much pain, bloating and discomfort.Tried many medicines. But amitriptyline is best among them with almost no side affects for me. I have a severe IBS episode and was in so much trouble. My doctor advised me amitriptyline 25mg at bed time and an unbelievable wonder happened in 2 weeks. All the symptoms reduced and I felt much better. For acute attack I take librax with it. Amitriptyline is really a miracle drug. If you have IBS, give this medicine a chance. I am sure it will work for you and you will pass a normal life like me."
"I have been taking amitriptyline for 3 months now - I take 10mg morning and night due to how severe my irritable bowel syndrome is. I can eat everything now and have no side effects - I used to have diarrhea, bloating, stomach cramps & bad gas every time I ate gluten, dairy, spicy foods, onion, garlic and coffee (I've suffered from IBS for 8 years) This medicine has changed my life."
"I have suffered from IBS-D Restated you’re anxiety since I was 21 (now 26). I self diagnosed and attempted to self treat but nothing worked. I’m not Someone who likes to take daily medication- I have ADHD and I rarely take my adderall. I originally went to the doc for headaches- I was having 15-20 headache days a month. My doc prescribed me Amitriptyline for 3 months. I was skeptical at first because I do not like taking daily mediation. I thought about it for a couple of days and decided to try it. IT HAS CHANGED MY LIFE. I have had 9 headaches since taking it (I’m now starting my next 3 month round of it) my sleep has vastly improved and I started to notice in the first few weeks I was having regular bowel moments. I have never had “regular bowel movements” in my life. My anxiety level has drastically decreased and my IBS has basically disappeared. I highly recommend this medication for headaches, anxiety, IBS, sleep difficulties etc."
"I have had IBS-D for many years I was in so much pain every single day the cramps were unbearable couldn’t leave the house I’m on 50mg and I cannot tell you enough how much it’s helped me it’s made me feel normal again I can do day to day things without needing to run to the toilet every 5 seconds I honestly recommend trying this to anyone with IBS I hope it helps you as much as it’s helped me,"
"I was skeptical and did not want to take this. My doctor prescribed Amitriptyline and Citalopram in approx. 1/4 dosage given for depression. I had just gone through the worst 4 four months of my life with debilitating Irritable Bowel Syndrome attacks nearly every day that would last for two to up to 8 hours. I gave in and tried the medications. I have not had a single IBS attack since the very first night I took the medications. It feels like a miracle. My attacks were so bad the thought of dying seemed better than having the attacks regularly. I thank my incredible doctor and God for introducing me to this medicine. "
"I have had IBS since I can remember as a child I thought it was a normal thing cause I've had it all my life. I'm in my 20's now and a few years ago is when my ibs got out of control. I've had many medical visits to the ER for my ibs pain and boy let me tell you the pain is unimaginable. I even contemplated suicide yes I was in that much pain and suffering after many failed attempts from different medications I did my extensive research and pretty much told my doctor that I wanted to try this medication im on 25mg this medication is a miracle why have these doctors been hiding this medication from ibs suffers iam now pain free and I can live my life with my family and enjoy every minute of it please try this medication it does wonders"
"Last summer I randomly woke up with the strangest stomach problems (I have never had stomach issues in my life prior to this, nor do any such problems run in my family). I had intense stomach pain, diarrhea, constipation you name it. All summer I had every test under the sun (blood work, CT, colonoscopy, endoscopy) all negative. For about 7 months my stomach felt like someone was ringing it like a rag and I was nauseous 24/7 and I constantly felt full. My doctor started me on 25 mg of Elavil and it kicked in after about three weeks of use. I no longer have that sensation anymore, I can eat and enjoy my life in college. This drug truly saved my life and I wish more doctors knew about it. I am beyond grateful for this medication."
"I was literally suicidal before I started this medication. I fought having to take it and now I wish I'd taken it sooner. It has quite literally saved my life. I am very sensitive to medication so I started on 2.5mg and crept it up to 5 mg. I am at least 90% better! I absolutely fully recommend giving this drug a chance if you get to the point where not living is feeling like your only escape. I was scared but I need not have been. Very mild side effects...slight weakness and tiredness at first and a headache for a few days."
"After a long period of stress I developed functional dyspepsia, which included ulcer-like pain, lots of belching, a horrible taste in my mouth, and nausea. It got so bad that I was struggling to eat anything at all without being in pain; I lost weight and started to become depressed because I felt like life wasn't worth living. In desperation, and after a lot of online research, I went to my doctor and asked for amitriptyline. I started on 10mg at night, and my symptoms began to disappear almost instantly. By day 4 or 5 I was virtually symptom-free. I upped my dose to an extra 10mg in the morning, to ensure that the effect didn't wear off during the day. I can now pretty much eat what I like, and I have hope for the future! Give it a try :)"
"If your thinking about going on this medicine for irritable bowel syndrome do it! I have been suffering for almost 5 years now and I was missing work and was terrified to leave my house. Any social event I would go to I would be terrified I would have a flare up. I used to LIVE off Pepto and I started taking amitriptyline (25mg) it has changed my life! For real! Besides a little weight gain which is much better then living the life I was, it has truly saved me. This dosage is really good for me and my irritable bowel syndrome was very severe. I take it with dinner so I don't wake up to tired! Good luck!"
"This medicine is amazing. After 10 years of chronic diarrhea, fecal urgency and other Irritable Bowel Syndrome symptoms, I went to see the gastro as I was doubled over in colic-type pain up to 3 times a month. He gave me 25mg to take at night and I haven't looked back."
"I suffered from irritable bowel syndrome, diarrhea at least 3 times a day. I have now been on the medication for over two months and I cried with happiness at my follow-up! I have had diarrhea TWICE since I started taking the medication. This medication has genuinely saved my life."
"I've had IBS for years, but it was just in the last couple of years that it really started taking its toll on my life. I couldn't leave my house for fear of an attack without access to a bathroom. Then, the normal lower abdominal cramping changed to excruciating upper abdominal pain. The pain would get so severe at times, it triggered a vasovagal response, causing me to pour sweat, have insanely loud ringing in my head, and nearly faint. My whole body felt so strange and weak. I don't know how IBS can cause such horrible pain, or how an antidepressant can stop it, but it does, and it has. Amitriptyline has changed how I spend my days. No more brutal pain and minimal episodes of diarrhea. I hope I never have to stop taking it. Honestly, if I have to go back to dealing with that pain again on even a semi-regular basis, it would be too much. So, I guess, in a sense, amitriptyline has saved my life."
"I had stomach problems for years and had gone several gastroscopy tests and was diagnosed acid reflux. Doctors prescribed me different antacids for a year that never helped. Luckily I met an amazing GI Dr. He questioned a bit about my life and figured that I had a deep depression of my mother's loss 2 years ago. We were fighting for her cancer 2 years and she passed away in the end. So doctor said it's nothing but a depressed mind and depressed stomach. Prescribed me Elavil 10mg for one year. It's been 10 days I'm taking it before going to bed and I can say it changed my life. No pain, no more symptoms and can eat pretty much everything even coffee and sweets. The only side effect is that I have a great appetite and gained 1 kg and difficulty to wake up in the morning but once I'm up full of energy again. I totally recommend it."
"I have been dealing with IBS for about 2 years now, NOTHING was working. The doctors tried everything to see if they could help my pain and stomach problems. About 1 month ago my doctor prescribed this medication and my stomach pains are 99% gone. I take a 10 mg pill every night and it not only helps with my IBS, it also helps with my anxiety. I would recommend this medication to anyone! I can start living the life that I had before IBS, its amazing!"
"I’ve suffered with very acute IBS for six years. The pain and discomfort plus all the associated symptoms have made my life very difficult. Had to take lots of time off work. Eventually saw a different specialist a few months ago who recommended Amitriptyline for IBS at a starting dose of 10 mg and slowly increasing to 30 mg. The symptoms are greatly reduced and the pain is generally much more bearable. I’m still having flare ups so will keep increasing the tablets. It has given me my life back. I can now make arrangements to go out and know that 99% of the time I’ll be ok to go. Such a great relief. I found this site by accident but extremely helpful to hear other people’s stories and know I’m not alone. Good luck."
"When I suddenly developed severe nausea/loss of appetite accompanied by severe acid reflux and abdominal cramps about a year ago, I thought I was sick with an acute illness. I could hardly eat for months. However, all the doctors I saw couldn't find anything particularly wrong with me, save some inflammation in my esophagus. I was at my wit's end after a particularly severe flare-up a few weeks ago, and my GI thought it might be a good idea to try a low-dose antidepressant, since most food intolerances had been ruled out. Within days on 10 mg, the cramps were mostly gone, and now, a few weeks later, the nausea is also gone and my appetite is back (with a vengeance). It's truly a miracle! The only downsides for me have been some mouth dryness and urine retention, both mild, and trouble falling asleep despite the drowsiness, which has been slightly more difficult to deal with."
Reviews may be edited to correct grammar/spelling or to remove inappropriate language and content. Reviews that appear to be created by parties with a vested interest are not published. This information is not intended to endorse any particular medication. While these reviews may be helpful, they are not a substitute for the expertise, knowledge, and judgement of healthcare professionals.
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"I started Amitriptyline (Endep) for IBS-D that was mainly triggered by anxiety but sometimes food also. After trialing SSRI’s and having no luck, I did some online research and noticed the older anti depressants helped regulate gut mobility. I asked my doctor if I could trial them so I did. At first I noticed the deep sleep but also the lack of that “spaced out” feeling you get with the newer antidepressants, I actually just felt like myself. After about 3 months on 20mg, I slowly week by week increased the dose to 50mg and that was my perfect fit, no more anxiety attacks or running to the bathroom due to fight or flight cortisol throwing my gut into spasms. I’m able to go out, have fun and not worry about IBS at all. If you are suffering from IBS that stems from or has led to anxiety, give this drug a try and don’t be scared to increase the dose till you find the perfect fit for yourself, you’ll get your life back!! Good luck!!"