Are We Close to Solving the Mystery of IBS?

MRI technology opens the new door to a new understanding of irritable bowel syndrome and dietary changes that may help IBS sufferers. Doctors today have to rely on X-ray scans and patients’ descriptions of their symptoms to diagnose irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). But scientists at the University of Nottingham’s Digestive Diseases Centre in the U.K. have discovered a new way of investigating the illness using MRIs, which could affect how doctors diagnose and treat IBS in the future. IBS is a functional gastrointestinal disorder caused by changes in how the GI tract works. The most common symptoms are diarrhea, constipation, gas, bloating, and chronic abdominal pain. IBS can be diagnosed if a patient experiences one or more of these symptoms at least three times a month for a period of three months or longer, according to the National Digestive Diseases Information Clearinghouse. However, because the causes and symptoms of IBS vary from person to person, it can be difficult for doctors to treat.

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