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What is Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)?

Apr 26th, 2008 01:22
Taksh Verdhan, Sakir Ali, ha mo, Vikram Singh, David Cowgill, http://www.ibsweblog.com/ibs-what-is-it-irritable-bowel-syndrome.php


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Irritable Bowel Syndrome affects more than twice as many women as men, 
for reasons that are not yet understood.
IBS is a physical � not psychological � disorder characterized by 
lower abdominal pain (spasms or cramps) or discomfort, diarrhea, 
constipation (or alternating diarrhea & constipation), gas, bloating, 
and nausea. There is no cure for Irritable Bowel Syndrome, which is 
actually a brain-gut dysfunction, but there are many very effective 
ways of controlling and even eliminating IBS symptoms through safe 
Irritable Bowel Syndrome treatments.
Irritable Bowel Syndrome Symptoms - What Are They? How is IBS 
Diagnosed?
It�s important to verify that your symptoms match those of Irritable 
Bowel Syndrome before you accept this diagnosis. As noted, IBS is 
characterized by continuous or recurrent lower abdominal pain or 
cramping (from mild to excruciating) in association with altered bowel 
motility (diarrhea, constipation, or both)and you can view at
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suddenly at any time of day or night, and may occasionally � though 
not typically � wake you from a sound sleep. Gas and bloating are 
common, but vomiting isn�t, though it can occur due to nausea from the 
pain. Upper GI symptoms are not a typical part of Irritable Bowel 
Syndrome. For women, attacks are often associated with menstruation. 
Passing blood, running a fever, swollen extremities, and joint pain 
are not symptoms of IBS, and point to other disorders. IBS is 
diagnosed in part by the use of the official diagnostic criteria known 
as the Rome II Guidelines for Irritable Bowel Syndrome.
Irritable Bowel Syndrome Diagnosis? These Diseases Must Be Ruled Out 
First!
In addition to verifying that your symptoms match those of the Rome II 
Guidelines, it�s also important that the following diseases are 
excluded before you accept a diagnosis of Irritable Bowel Syndrome:
As a rule, all possible physical, structural, and infectious 
abnormalities of the GI tract need to be unquestionably eliminated 
before you agree to an Irritable Bowel Syndrome diagnosis. This 
requires a physical examination, preferably by a board-certified 
gastroenterologist. The medical tests needed to rule out disorders 
other than IBS will depend upon your age, health history, family 
health background, and specific symptoms.
Once you have a firm IBS diagnosis, take heart. While there is no cure 
yet, there are many ways to successfully manage - and prevent - all 
Irritable Bowel Syndrome symptoms. You can control your IBS, not vice 
versa.
To start feeling better immediately, begin with the Irritable Bowel 
Syndrome diet and learn why how you eat is just as important as what 
you eat.
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