Peter Lipták, Martin Schnierer, Peter Bánovčin, Rudolf Hyrdel
Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) ranks among the functional gastrointestinal disorders. It is a widespread disease with
a worldwide prevalence of approximately 11% of the global population, affecting more women than men at a ratio of
3:1 and with a higher incidence in the industrially developed countries compared to the developing countries. Patients
with this diagnosis are among the most frequently examined in the primary outpatient sector, which represents an
increased burden on both patients and physicians as well as the healthcare system. The pathophysiology is complex,
involving the relationship between the nervous regulation, endocrine and immune system. Complete etiopathogenesis
of this disease is not entirely known. Visceral hypersensitivity and a lower tolerance of stress factors are present in
patients with IBS. In some patients, the symptoms of disease occur after the previous intestinal infection. The Rome
III criteria for functional gastrointestinal disorders are mostly used for diagnosis after exclusion of alarming factors.
The treatment has many pitfalls and given the diversity of symptoms the therapy needs to be individualised. In recent
years, however, there is a significant progress in the treatment options for irritable bowel syndrome, which gives hope
for the future for successful IBS management not only for gastroenterologists but particularly for patients with sufficient
relief in chronic problems.