Today, as many as 45 million Americans have irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). At GastroCare LI, in Valley Stream, New York, top gastroenterology specialists Bradley Rieders, MD, and Brandon Rieders, MD, use the most advanced assessment methods, including hydrogen breath and small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO) testing. That allows them to rule out other conditions and treat your IBS. Book your appointment online or call the office to schedule your visit now.

request an appointment

What is irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)?

IBS is a gastrointestinal disorder that affects your large intestine. It causes abdominal pain and bowel habit problems in up to 15% of Americans today. While IBS can cause severe and disruptive symptoms, it doesn’t lead to cancer or structural changes in your digestive tract.

What are the signs of irritable bowel syndrome?

IBS can cause different symptoms from one person to another. The most common symptoms of IBS include:

  • Abdominal cramping or pain
  • Bowel movement changes: frequent diarrhea, constipation, or both
  • Bloating
  • Gas
  • Mucus in stool

Symptoms may occur frequently or only once in a while, and the severity can fluctuate.

When should I see a doctor about IBS symptoms?

If your IBS symptoms are frequent or they interrupt your daily activities, it’s time to call GastroCare LI. Certain symptoms are more serious and could indicate a condition like Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, or colon cancer. These symptoms include:

  • Severe debilitating pain
  • Unexplained major weight loss
  • Vomiting
  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Pain that persists after you pass gas or have a bowel movement
  • Rectal bleeding

If you have these severe symptoms, reach out to GastroCare LI immediately so you can get an accurate diagnosis.

How is irritable bowel syndrome diagnosed?

IBS diagnosis involves a detailed review of your problems and symptoms. Your GastroCare LI provider may recommend certain tests to verify or rule out the source of your symptoms.

Common tests include blood work, lactose breath testing, sucrose breath testing, and small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO) testing. If you’re 45 or older, your provider may recommend colon cancer screening with a colonoscopy as well.

What is the most effective irritable bowel syndrome treatment?

IBS treatment often involves lifestyle changes alongside medication and other medical interventions. Common approaches include:

  • Avoiding trigger foods
  • Increasing dietary fiber
  • Drinking plenty of water
  • Stress management and relaxation techniques
  • Regular exercise
  • Probiotic supplements
  • Psychotherapy
  • Mindfulness training

Many medications may help to manage IBS symptoms, including anti-diarrheal drugs, antidepressants, laxatives, and medications that alter the speed waste moves through your bowels. Most people experience significant IBS relief with a customized combination of these treatments.

If you have frequent irritable bowel syndrome symptoms, don’t let embarrassment hold you back from getting relief. The expert gastroenterologists at GastroCare LI are ready to help, so call the office or use the online scheduling feature to set up your appointment now.