What are the signs and symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)?
Irritable bowel syndrome is characterized mostly by abdominal pain a and cramping. Other IBS symptoms and signs include:
- Diarrhea: IBS with diarrhea (IBS-D) can come with sudden urges to have bowel movements and loose stools.
- Constipation: IBS with constipation (IBS-C) can be accompanied by straining during bowel movements and infrequent stools.
- Increased gas
- Abdominal swelling or bloating
- Abdominal pain or discomfort
- Cramping pain after eating certain foods
- Mucousy or foamy stool
- Unexplained weight loss
- Loss of appetite
While not technically a symptom of IBS, nearly 70% of people with IBS also experience indigestion.
Symptoms are often relieved by bowel movements. Women with IBS may have more symptoms during their menstrual periods.