Learn About Irritable Bowel Syndrome

IBS is an irritable bowel syndrome that affects the large and small intestines. It causes many gastrointestinal symptoms. IBS causes significant morbidity in patients. Physical pain, psychosocial problems, and economic inefficiency substantially impact the quality of life.

Some studies estimate the prevalence of IBS at 11.2% worldwide. According to epidemiological studies, IBS is reported in between 4.2% and 7.5% of the population. Actual numbers could be higher.

IBS symptoms can vary between patients and change over time. IBS is characterized by abdominal pain, discomfort, bloating, and cramping. Other symptoms include changes in frequency (diarrheaconstipation) and the type of stool (liquid, hard). Based on the predominant symptoms, IBS has been subtyped into IBS-D (diarrhea predominant), IBS-C (constipation-predominant), or IBS-M (mixed). Other symptoms are a feeling of incomplete evacuation, stomach issues, and mucus.

IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome) diagnosis is primarily based on clinical evaluation and diagnostic criteria. Diagnostic tests are prescribed to rule out any other illnesses. IBS is diagnosed after all other disorders that have similar symptoms are excluded.

IBS is associated with several myths. IBS has been associated with cancer and inflammatory bowel diseases. IBS isn’t an autoimmune disease and won’t lead to colon cancer or IBD.

IBS has no known cause, but some factors may play a part, including severe gastrointestinal infections and irregular muscle contractions.

IBS may be caused by changes in the gut microbiota or a lack of coordination between the nervous system and the intestine.

Bidirectional communication between the brain and gut is currently being studied in depth. IBS symptoms and IBS are affected by the complex interaction between the brain and heart. IBS has several psychosocial components that are not well understood. Some patients with IBS may show signs of depression or anxiety.

Patient education and reassurance should be part of the initial treatment plan. It is essential to explain the benign nature of this disease. IBS is not curable, but the symptoms can be managed effectively. Treatment depends on the main symptom.

The first-line treatment includes fiber and osmotic bowel laxatives to treat constipation and diarrhea. Opioids are prescribed for diarrhea, and antispasmodics are prescribed for pain. The management of psychological disorders is also essential. A multidisciplinary approach is required to manage IBS effectively. This includes the physician, Dietician, and Psychology.

In clinical settings, the FODMAP diet (low fermentable oligosaccharide (disaccharide), monosaccharide (monosaccharide), and polyols (FODMAP) diet) is becoming more popular in managing symptoms of IBS.