Typical symptoms are abdominal pain or cramping and irregular bowel function. Patients may experience diarrhoea followed by constipation a few days later.  They may also have abdominal swelling.

There can be several causes of IBS including a change in diet or stress and anxiety. IBS can also develop after recovery from another gastrointestinal disorder such as food poisoning.

You should see your GP in the first instance. They may recommend tests to rule out any other gastrointestinal disorders or coeliac disease (gluten intolerance).
 

How is IBS treated?

The symptoms of IBS often ease or settle without treatment. Your treatment will depend on your particular symptoms. Treatment for IBS may include dietary restrictions. You may be asked to keep a food diary to help identify foods that may trigger symptoms.

Medication to ease intestinal spasms (antispasmotic medication) may also be recommended. Many are available without prescription. Over the counter medication to treat your specific symptoms such as diarrhoea or constipation may also be recommended.

If conservative treatment is not successful your GP may refer you to a specialist consultant.


Related tests and scans


Get in touch

Fill in an enquiry form below or call us

Thank you

A member of the team will respond to you soon.

To continue to receive communications from Nuffield Health about our exclusive offers, products and services, then please tell us how you'd like to be contacted by ticking the relevant boxes below:

On occasion Nuffield Health may contact you with pertinent service information in regards to services we provide. Note that you can either amend or withdraw your consent at any time.

For information about where your personal data may be processed, how it may be processed and for details of our Data Protection Officer, please see our Privacy Policy.

Digestive health

A nutritionist's 10-step guide to healthy digestion

Suffering from poor digestion can be a miserable experience. You may be experiencing symptoms of bloating, diarrhoea, constipation or gas, which can make life very uncomfortable.

Read full article