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St. Petersburg General Hospital
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Symptoms of Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)

IBS symptoms affect the intestines. The symptoms may come and go.

Normal Anatomy
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Copyright © Nucleus Medical Media, Inc.

Symptoms of IBS range in intensity from mild to severe and include the following:

  • Abdominal cramps
  • Gas
  • Bloating
  • Pain that resolves with a bowel movement
  • Diarrhea
  • Constipation
  • Alternating bouts of diarrhea and constipation
  • Loose stools
  • Urge to move bowels, but no stool is passed
  • Feeling of incomplete bowel movement
  • Urge to move bowels after having a bowel movement
  • Mucus in the stool

If you see blood in the stool, consult your doctor immediately.

Revision Information

  • Reviewer: Daus Mahnke, MD
  • Review Date: 12/2015 -
  • Update Date: 12/20/2014 -
  • Fauci AS, Braunwald E, et al. Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine. 14th ed. New York, NY: The McGraw-Hill Companies; 2000.

  • IBS. American Gastroenterological Association website. Available at: http://www.gastro.org/patient-care/conditions-diseases/irritable-bowel-syndrome. Accessed December 18, 2015.

  • Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed. Updated September 1, 2015. Accessed December 18, 2015.

  • Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). Merck Manual Professional Version website. Available at: http://www.merckmanuals.com/professional/gastrointestinal-disorders/irritable-bowel-syndrome--(ibs)/irritable-bowel-syndrome--(ibs). Updated July 2013. Accessed December 18, 2015.