Background: The purpose of this study was to evaluate the long-term efficacy and the safety of a lecithin-based delivery form of boswellic acids from Boswellia serrata (Casperome®) for the prevention of symptoms in otherwise healthy subjects with mild irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).
Methods: The study included 69 otherwise healthy participants with a mild form of IBS who completed a 6-month follow-up period. In total, 34 subjects were assigned to the standard management (SM) group: diet and, if needed, hyoscine butylbromide (Buscopan®) or papaverine hydrochloride + 10 mg of Atropa belladonna extract; 35 subjects were assigned to supplementation with the Boswellia serrata lecithin-based delivery form (one tablet/day; Casperome®). IBS signs and symptoms were evaluated at inclusion (T0), after 3 (T1) and 6 months (T2). The numbers of patients who needed rescue medication were recorded. Adverse events were also evaluated.
Results: At baseline, the groups were comparable in terms of demographic and clinical characteristics. At follow-up, compared with the SM group, the Boswellia group showed lower mean score values for almost all self-assed IBS symptoms. A significantly lower need for rescue medications and consultations or medical evaluation/admissions was found in the Boswellia group compared with the SM group. The incidence of minimal adverse events - mainly stipsis - was significantly higher in the SM group. Oxidative stress at T2 was significantly decreased in Boswellia-supplemented subjects.
Conclusions: Boswellia serrata lecithin-based delivery form (Casperome®) appears to be effective and safe in improving signs and symptoms in IBS subjects who are otherwise healthy, particularly in comparison with symptomatic drug treatment that may cause side effects and stiptis.