Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a common intestinal condition that is separate from inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and is not related to other bowel conditions. Irritable bowel syndrome consists of several intestinal symptoms that generally occur together and can vary in severity and duration for each patient.

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The symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome often occur as a result of abnormal functioning between the nervous system and the muscles of the bowel. This abnormal regulation can cause irritation or sensitivity.


Those with irritable bowel syndrome may experience the following symptoms:

  • A feeling of incomplete bowel movements or urgency
  • Abdominal pain and cramping
  • Bloating and gas
  • Changes in bowel movements including diarrhea and constipation
  • Nausea
  • Passage of mucous

It is not uncommon for patients to experience both constipation and diarrhea. Some patients do have continuous symptoms while others may seem less persistent. Women may experience more severe symptoms around or during menstruation and while pregnant.


There is no specific test for irritable bowel syndrome. However, after conducting a thorough physical examination, discussing your symptoms, and running additional testing, a diagnosis can be confirmed.

Mild to moderate cases of irritable bowel syndrome can often be managed through dietary changes. Your doctor may recommend avoiding meals that are high in fatty or fried foods and reducing your intake of caffeine, alcohol, and gas-producing foods. Eating more fiber from fruits and certain vegetables or taking fiber pills can help to relieve symptoms as well. For those with more moderate to severe cases, medication can be prescribed to help manage symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome but does not cure the condition.

For more information on irritable bowel syndrome or to schedule a consultation, please contact our office at (516) 487-2444.