Irritable Bowel Syndrome A Common Mystery
Although a very common disorder shared by many Americans, the cause of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) still remains a mystery.
Essentially there are two basic types or conditions associated with IBS and many differing opinions and theories as to what causes this condition or disorder.
First let?s take a look at the two basic types or symptoms that accompany IBS.
One of the diagnostic criteria for irritable bowel is stomach pain that is associated with a change in the consistency of the stool (hardening or softening) which essentially defines the two basic types.
With too frequent bowel movements that are associated with the first type; stools become soft and eventually diarrhea sets in. With diarrhea there is a certain amount of abdominal pain and a ?crampy? feeling or bloating.
The number of ?normal? bowel movements varies from individual to individual, however, when the frequency increases to the point of having loose and water movements associated with a build up of pain or cramping that is relieved by the bowel movement this is not considered normal and would be a candidate for further diagnosis by your doctor.
Conversely, symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome can include the same abdominal pain and bloating associated with diarrhea but, the stools have become constipated and increasingly difficult to pass.
In fact, those who suffer from IBS symptoms can even be afflicted by both types of symptoms at differing times.
Regardless of the type of symptom(s) your body is experiencing, you should set an appointment with your physician to discuss the possible causes of these symptoms and defer to your doctor as to what your next steps in the diagnosis process should be.
When it comes to diagnosis and IBS, the difficulty lies in the fact that there is no tangible evidence as to the cause of this digestive malfunction. By that, I mean that current testing methods will not turn up any evidence of damage or abnormality within the intestinal tract.
As such, the diagnostic process is more a process of determining what your symptoms are not a part of or by eliminating what is not causing the symptoms.
Many times an effective strategy for relieving the symptoms of IBS is to keep track of your eating and lifestyle habits and exactly what foods you consume. The idea here is to see if there is a cause and effect relationship with certain type(s) of food.
Although irritable bowel syndrome is a bit of an elusive condition to diagnose and treatment strategies may vary, it is important that if you are suffering from the symptoms that you seek the advice of your doctor for proper diagnosis and a forward thinking treatment strategy.
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