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Functional Gastrointestinal Disorder

The disorder that disturbs the function of the gastrointestinal tract

Functional Gastrointestinal Disorder is a group of disorders that are characterized by disturbed function of the gastrointestinal tract. Gastrointestinal (GI) disorders include two major categories; organic GI disorders and functional bowel disorders. Subjects with organic GI disorders have either gross abnormalities, like a tumor, ulcer or inflammation, or microscopic abnormalities. Subjects with "functional" bowel disorders, on the contrary, do not have any visible problem in their GI tracts. In fact, functional bowel disorders all have in common a “normal looking gastrointestinal tract”. Common functional disorders include non-ulcer dyspepsia, painless constipation, painless diarrhea, irritable esophagus and chronic abdominal pain.

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IBS Definition

IBS is a Combination of Abdominal Pain and Changes in Bowel Habits.

One of the first definitions of IBS was proposed in 1978 by Dr. Manning and his colleagues who recommended that a diagnosis of IBS be based on the presence of the following four symptoms; 1) pain that is improved after a bowel movement, 2) diarrhea at the onset of abdominal pain, 3) more frequent bowel movements at the onset of pain and 4) visible abdominal distension (bloating). About ten years later, a group of physicians gathered together in Rome and proposed new criteria for the diagnosis of IBS called the Rome criteria.

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The Rome Criteria for IBS

In 1992, a group of physicians gathered together in Rome and proposed new criteria for the diagnosis of IBS (the Rome criteria). Later this criteria was updated in 1999 and was called the Rome-II criteria. Subsequently, in 2006 the criteria were further modified andwere called Rome-III criteria. These set of definition have added to our understanding of IBS. According to Rome-III, IBS is defined as recurrent abdominal pain or discomfort at least 3 days/month in last 3 months associated with two or more of the following features: 1) relief upon having a bowel movement, 2) onset associated with a change in frequency of bowel movement or 3) onset associated with change in the form (appearance) of stool. The symptoms must be present for at least 3 Months (which do not need to be consecutive) over the past 6 months.

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Organic Gastrointestinal Disorders

Gastrointestinal Disease That Is Evident During Endoscopies orMicroscopic Examination

Organic Gastrointestinal disorders are a group of disorders that have either gross abnormalities that can beseen by endoscope or microscopic examination of the tissue biopsy of the gastrointestinal tract. The organic GI disoders include a wide variety ofdiseases such as peptic or intestinal ulcers,Inflammatory Bowel Diseases (Ulcerative Colitis and Crohn’s Disease), ischemicboweldisease, infectious and parasitic GI diseases, celiac disease or several other uncommon disorders. The diagnosis of the organic GI disorders can be madeduring endoscopies or examination of gastrointestinal tissue under the microscope. The diagnosis can also be made using imaging techniques such as X-ray and CT scans and MRIs. This group of disorders are in contrast to Functional Bowel Disorders which share a “normal looking gastrointestinal tract”.

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