© 1989

Pathogenesis of Functional Bowel Disease

  • William J. SnapeJr.

Part of the Topics in Gastroenterology book series (TGEN)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xix
  2. Emeran A. Mayer, Helen Raybould
    Pages 13-35
  3. M. A. K. Khalil, W. G. Thompson
    Pages 101-112
  4. Joel E. Richter
    Pages 113-142
  5. John E. Kellow, Sidney F. Phillips
    Pages 171-198
  6. James C. Reynolds
    Pages 199-225
  7. William J. Snape Jr.
    Pages 227-247
  8. Walter J. Hogan, Wylie J. Dodds, Joseph E. Geenen
    Pages 273-288
  9. N. W. Read, Wei Ming Sun
    Pages 289-313
  10. Paul E. Hyman
    Pages 315-333
  11. Sean J. Mulvihill, Haile T. Debas
    Pages 335-355
  12. Back Matter
    Pages 357-368

About this book


In their second year in medical school, students begin to learn about the differences between "disease" and "illness." In their studies of pathology they learn to understand disease as pertubations of molecular biological events. And we clinicians can show disease to them by our scans, lay it out even on our genetic scrolls, and sometimes even point out the errant nucleotide. Disease satisfies them and us; at Yale, lectures on the gastrointestinal tract run from achalasia to proctitis. There is, alas, little mention of functional bowel disease or of the irritable or spastic colon, for that is not easy to show on hard copy. Functional bowel disease represents "illness," the response of the person to distress, to food, to the environment, and to the existential problems of living. In real life such matters are most important. Richard Cabot first found out at the Massachusetts General Hospital almost a century ago that 50% of the patients attending the outpatient clinic had "functional" complaints. The figure had grown to over 80% when the very same question was reexamined 60 years later.


colon gastrointestinal tract hospital stress

Editors and affiliations

  • William J. SnapeJr.
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Inflammatory Bowel Disease CenterHarbor-UCLA Medical CenterTorranceUSA
  2. 2.University of California-Los AngelesLos AngelesUSA

Bibliographic information

Industry Sectors
Health & Hospitals
Internal Medicine & Dermatology