Many people experience abdominal pain, excess gas, diarrhea or constipation and cramping due to irritable bowel syndrome or IBS. Signs and symptoms can get worse and then can completely disappear. Symptoms of IBS can be managed with diet and medication. We can help diagnose the issue and create a treatment plan that’s right for you.
What is irritable bowel syndrome or IBS?
The exact cause of IBS is not known but there are some factors that play a role in the condition:
- Inflamed intestine
- Intestinal muscle contraction
- Abnormalities in the nervous system
- Changes to the microflora or “good bacteria” in the gut
Certain foods, increased stress and hormone changes can all trigger symptoms of IBS.
How is irritable bowel syndrome diagnosed?
When other conditions with similar symptoms are ruled out, your doctor can use certain criteria to diagnose IBS. This condition does not have an exact test for diagnosis. In order to rule out a more serious disease, your doctor may order one of the following tests:
- Flexible sigmoidoscopy
- X-ray or CT scan
- Lactose intolerance tests
- Breath test for bacterial overgrowth
- Upper endoscopy
- Stool tests
How is irritable bowel syndrome treated?
Treatment for IBS focuses on the management of symptoms and can include stress management and a change in diet. For severe bouts, medication can be used for symptoms or specifically for IBS.
Our gastroenterology team can help you find a diagnosis for your abdominal pain and create a treatment plan that’s right for you.