Health Watch - Digestive Tract: Irritable Bowel Syndrome

Health Watch is a Public Service of the Office of News and Publications and is intended to provide general information only and should not replace the advice of a medical professional. You should contact your physician if you have questions about any of these topics.


This week on Health Watch, we’re talking about the digestive tract. Up to 20 percent of adults in the United States have to deal with irritable bowel syndrome, which can disrupt daily life for sufferers.

Frequent abdominal cramps, bloating, flatulence, diarrhea or constipation can be signs of irritable bowel syndrome. People with this condition may miss work or social occasions because of their disruptive symptoms. Dr. Prabhakar Swaroop, a gastroenterologist at
UT Southwestern Medical Center, says that although there’s no cure for irritable bowel syndrome, you should still talk to your doctor because there may be things you can do to ease your symptoms. It may help to eat smaller, more frequent meals, add fiber to your diet, manage stress, exercise or take medication. Taking these steps can help keep irritable bowel syndrome from being too disruptive.

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April 2010


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