What You Need To Know About Irritable Bowel Syndrome

Hundreds of thousands of Americans suffer from IBS, a condition which is not curable but is manageable with some of the advanced Irritable Bowel Syndrome treatments available in Brooklyn, NY. IBS also has no known cause, so doctors usually diagnose it based on the symptoms, which include abdominal pain, gas bloating, and abnormal volume (diarrhea or constipation). In most cases, these symptoms are not very severe.

When to See a Doctor

Everyone experiences symptoms like the ones described above from time to time, but not everyone has IBS. If these symptoms are chronic, meaning that they last more than a few months, IBS may be a possibility. Bear in mind that even if the symptoms improve from time to time, or if they are replaced by other ones, the condition is still chronic. You should also see a doctor if symptoms become more serious and include:
  • Nighttime pain,
  • Rectal bleeding, or
  • Sudden weight loss.
In cases like these, a qualified gastroenterologist can not only diagnose IBS, but also rule out more serious conditions, thus giving you peace of mind.

IBS Causes

No one really knows why the muscles that line the intestinal wall fall out of sync, causing abdominal symptoms and irregularity. Abnormalities in the gastrointestinal nervous system may have some bearing on IBS. Moreover, some people have specific triggers, such as certain kinds of foods or hormones, that do not affect other people. The bottom line is that IBS is not merely indigestion that goes away over time. There is a medical issue that requires a medical intervention, but in most cases, such intervention is minimal.

Common Irritable Bowel Syndrome Treatments in Brooklyn, NY

If not properly treated, IBS can have serious physical complications, such as malnutrition or dehydration. In most cases, however, the effect is largely emotional and psychological, as many IBS patients feel like they cannot control their own bodies. To avoid these complications, a gastroenterologist in Brooklyn, NY can partner with a patient in various areas, including:
  • Antidepressants: A mild selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) not only eases the depression commonly associated with IBS, but also helps the patient relax so the intestinal walls can function better under less pressure.
  • Antibiotics: A blood test normally indicates whether the intestine has too much bacteria, and that could be the root cause of the patient’s IBS.
  • Lotronex and Amitiza: Lotronex is basically a mild muscle relaxer that slows down the waste removal process, and Amitiza helps increase the fluid level in the intestines. These drugs are not for everybody.
A comprehensive examination is the best way to determine the optimal treatment approach. If you are dealing with chronic irregularity or any other gastrointestinal issue, contact us today.
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