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Irritable bowel syndrome

Also known as Irritable Colon, Spastic Colon, and Mucous Colitis

Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS, or spastic colon) is a symptom-based diagnosis characterized by chronic abdominal pain, discomfort, bloating, and alteration of bowel habits. As a functional bowel disorder, IBS has no known organic cause. Diarrhea or constipation may predominate, or they may alternate (classified as IBS-D, IBS-C or IBS-A, respectively). Historically a diagnosis of exclusion, a diagnosis of IBS can now be made on the basis of symptoms alone, in the absence of alarm features such as age of onset greater than 50 years, weight loss, gross hematochezia, systemic signs of infection or colitis, or family history of inflammatory bowel disease. Onset of IBS is more likely to occur after an infection (post-infectious, IBS-PI), a stressful life event, or onset of maturity.

Source: Wikipedia

What are the symptoms?

Within all the people who go to their doctor with irritable bowel syndrome, 73% report having sharp abdominal pain, 63% report having diarrhea, and 38% report having burning abdominal pain. The symptoms that are highly suggestive of irritable bowel syndrome are flatulence, although you may still have irritable bowel syndrome without those symptoms.


What might my doctor prescribe?

Common Tests and Procedures

Patients with irritable bowel syndrome often receive hematologic tests, complete blood count, lipid panel, x-ray computed tomography, sigmoidoscopy or colonoscopy, rectal examination, pelvis exam and liver function tests .

Common Medications

The most commonly prescribed drugs for patients with irritable bowel syndrome include dicyclomine, hyoscyamine (a-spas), polyethylene glycol 3350 (miralax), atropine / diphenoxylate, chlordiazepoxide / clidinium, nortriptyline, psyllium, tegaserod (zelnorm), atropine / hyoscyamine / phenobarbital / scopolamine, guar gum, lubiprostone (amitiza), bifidobacterium infantis (align) and mesalamine (asacol) .

Who is at risk?

Groups of people at highest risk for irritable bowel syndrome include . On the other hand, age 1-4 years almost never get irritable bowel syndrome.

Age

< 1 years
0.1x
1-4 years
0.0x
5-14 years
0.7x
15-29 years
0.9x
30-44 years
1.2x
45-59 years
1.3x
60-74 years
1.3x
75+ years
1.0x

Sex

Male
0.6x
Female
1.3x

Race/Ethnicity

Black
0.5x
Hispanic
0.8x
White
1.3x
Other
0.5x
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