Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is the most common functional gastrointestinal in the U.S. It is estimated the 10-15% of Americans suffer from IBS. 60-70% of IBS cases are associated with overgrowth of bacteria called Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth (SIBO) or fungal organisms called Small Intestine Fungal Overgrowth (SIFO). This overgrowth of otherwise normal bacteria or fungi is due to impaired function of the small intestine that alter its ability to clean it self out properly between meals. This allows bacteria and fungi from the large intestine to growth into the small intestine, triggering multiple digestive issues.
The symptoms of IBS with SIBO/SIFO can include the following:
- Ongoing abdominal discomfort that occurs at least 3 days a month over the past 3 months.
- Abdominal discomfort is temporarily relieved by having a bowel movement.
- Change in stool frequency. More than 3 bowel movements per day (diarrhea or loose stool) or less than 3 bowel movements per week (constipation).
- Change in appearance of stool: hard, pellets, not well formed, undigested food, liquid, mucous. Stool that is incomplete or difficult to pass.
- Frequent gas and bloating within 1 hour of a meal.
- Abdominal bloating that progressively worsens throughout the day.
- Digestive issues began after an episode of gastroenteritis also known as food poisoning or dysentery.
- Other digestive conditions associated with IBS/SIBO/ SIFO are: heartburn, GERD, acid reflux, burping, belching, excessive gas, gas pain, brain fog, fatigue, multiple food intolerances and rashes among others.
We have physicians at Meridian Medicine that specialize in the treatment of IBS and SIBO/SIFO. They will work with you to make an accurate diagnosis and recommend treatment specific to your condition to help restore function and proper digestion.