Encyclopedia of Clinical Neuropsychology

2018 Edition
| Editors: Jeffrey S. Kreutzer, John DeLuca, Bruce Caplan

Irritable Bowel Syndrome

  • Natalie DattiloEmail author
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-57111-9_2079

Short Description or Definition

Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is characterized by chronic abdominal pain or discomfort and altered bowel habits. In the absence of detectable organic causes, IBS is referred to as a functional disorder, which is defined by symptom-based criteria known as the “Rome criteria” (Longstreth et al. 2006).


Symptom onset must occur at least 6 months before diagnosis.

On the basis of predominant bowel habit, IBS is categorized into three subgroups:
  1. 1.

    IBS with diarrhea

  2. 2.

    IBS with constipation

  3. 3.

    IBS with mixed bowel habits



IBS is one of the most common syndromes seen by gastroenterologists and primary care providers, with a prevalence rate of 10–15% in industrialized countries (Drossman et al. 2002). Despite its relatively high prevalence rate, only about 10–30% of afflicted individuals seek medical care (Pae et al. 2007). Women are affected about twice as often as men in most population-based samples (Whitehead et al. 2002),...

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References and Readings

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© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PsychiatryIndiana University School of MedicineIndianapolisUSA