Gastrointestinal Associated Specialists
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Reclaim your life with experienced, compassionate, results-focused care.

Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a disorder that causes the colon to function improperly. It is prevalent in people of all ages, though usually diagnosed before age 35, and affects roughly 5 million Americans. Although IBS doesn’t damage the digestive tract or cause other health problems, its symptoms are uncomfortable, embarrassing and life-changing.

Is it really IBS? Is it another functional GI disorder?

IBS is a specific condition characterized by chronic bowel irregularity and pain. Its causes are unknown and its symptoms — cramping, abdominal pain, irregular bowel habits, gas, bloating, etc. — are shared with other disorders. Celiac disease, fructose malabsorption, cancer, certain infections and inflammatory bowel disease can appear to be IBS. Also, IBS is one in a group of problems known as functional gastrointestinal disorders, some of which can be confused with IBS. This means IBS must be carefully differentiated from these other problems.

What are functional GI disorders?

Functional GI disorders are problems in which the body’s normal GI activities are impaired but for which no structural abnormalities can be detected. There are functional disorders throughout the GI tract, including the esophagus, stomach, duodenum, pancreas, gallbladder, bowel and anus and rectum. IBS is most often confused with other functional disorders of the bowel, including functional abdominal bloating or pain, functional constipation, functional diarrhea and others.

The experienced, compassionate care you deserve.

Many patients with non-IBS functional disorders are told they have IBS and subsequently never receive the care they need. Also, other functional disorders that don’t present as IBS are never properly addressed. In either case, our board-certified gastroenterologists provide the experienced know-how, compassion and personal dedication to not only differentiate your problem but to help relieve your symptoms and get you back to your life.

For individualized care backed by experience, capability and a focus on results, call Gastrointestinal Associated Specialists today at (816) 527-0031 or use our online Patient Portal. For additional information on any condition, treatment or procedure, please visit our Health Education Library.