Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)

If you are like many of the approximately 50 Million Americans with symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), you probably have a lot of questions. Knowing that IBS is a common medical disorder can be a great relief.

What is Irritable Bowel Syndrome?

Irritable Bowel Syndrome is a common disorder of the digestive tract that causes:

  • abdominal pain
  • urgency
  • repeated diarrhea or constipation
  • gas
  • bloating

IBS is an ongoing problem with repeated flare-ups. There is no cure for this very real disorder, however it is manageable. It is not fatal, and is not a cause of cancer. IBS is often called a “functional disorder” because there is no sign of injury or disease in the colon.

Other names used to describe IBS include:

  • nervous stomach
  • spastic colon
  • spastic bowel
  • irritable colon
  • functional bowel disease

Who gets IBS?

Anyone can suffer from IBS. However, in the U.S. IBS affects:

  • Women more often than men
  • 50% of its sufferers before the age of 35
  • 20% of the population or 1 in 5 people
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