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July 13, 2020

Your blueprint for diagnosing IBS

Testing for IBS-D should include screening for giardia and celiac disease.
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Some of the most common GI complaints patients will share with you are about abdominal pain and altered bowel habits, both indicators of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). In the second of a four-part series on Contemporary Issues in Rural Medicine: Aligning Management of Functional Bowel Disorders with Best Practices, William D. Chey, MD, University of Michigan Health System, guides you through the Bristol Stool Form Scale so you can diagnose where your patient is on the continuum between diarrhea and constipation.

Using recommendations provided by AGA and the American College of Gastroenterology, Dr. Chey says testing for IBS-diarrhea (IBS-D) should include:

  • Determining fecal calprotectin or fecal lactoferrin to rule out inflammatory bowel disease (IBD).
  • Screening for giardia in areas where it is prevalent according to the CDC.
  • Screening for celiac disease with an IgA tTg (tissue transglutaminase) test and a quantitative IgA.

According to Dr. Chey, you should perform age-appropriate colorectal cancer screening for patients with IBS-constipation (IBS-C) as well as review their diet and lifestyle. You also need to be aware of key alarm features that may indicate a more serious condition.

Watch now to see all the recommendations by Dr. Chey on IBS-D, IBS-C as well as important alarm features.

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