Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)

Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) is a common medical problem that affects millions of Americans.  Symptoms vary greatly in quality, intensity, and frequency.  IBS can start early in life and become chronic.  While IBS typically does not lead to other life-threatening illnesses, it does interfere with lifestyle and even the ability to function normally.

IBS is typically a medical disease.  However, the latest classification system (ROME III criteria) does include many of the disease states that we have treated for decades under other names.  You can visit the Rome website at to see the criteria and descriptions of these disorders.

Do you think you have IBS?

Primary symptoms for IBS include:

  • Abdominal pain
    Generally speaking,  the abdominal pain  is in the  lower abdomen and is  characterized by a crampy feeling which comes and goes.  It is often relieved by the passage of stool or gas.
  • Diarrhea
    Diarrhea is usually associated with meals and frequently occurs early in the day.  A strong sense of urgency may precede the passage of loose or watery stools.
  • Constipation
    Constipation can be either the passage of small quantities of stool (often in small balls or narrow strands) or infrequent bowel movements (none for three days or more).  In many patients, diarrhea and constipation alternate.

Other common symptoms are:

  • Indigestion
  • Nausea
  • Gas
  • Bloating

Gas can be characterized by a tight, bloated sensation, belching, or excessive gas from the rectum.  These symptoms are usually intermingled to varying extents so that every patient’s symptoms are relatively unique to them.  Unfortunately, the exact cause of the complex disease remains unknown.

How do I manage my IBS Symptoms?

Because most irritable bowel issues are based on symptoms, at the Center for Colon & Rectal Health we offer advanced diagnostic testing in our Anorectal Physiology Lab.

At the Anorectal Physiology Lab, our advanced team offers comprehensive testing to accurately diagnose irritable bowel syndrome as well as many other disorders.  With that diagnosis, our colon and rectal specialists can provide you with the best treatment options to manage your IBS symptoms and improve quality of life.

Testing in the Anorectal Physiology Lab includes:

  • Anorectal manometry
  • Surface EMG (non-needle)
  • Balloon sensory testing
  • Colonic transit time studies (performed in Radiology)
  • Defecography (performed in Radiology)
  • Endoanal and endorectal ultrasound

More Information

Our goal is to provide you with a safe and comfortable environment. Every patient is different. We strive to offer you the most accurate and effective treatment options.

Please contact Bucks County’s premier colorectal group to schedule an appointment and to learn more.

St. Mary Medical Center
St. Clare Medical Building, Suite 130
1203 Langhorne-Newtown Road
Langhorne, PA 19047