Healthy Moments Episode

IBD vs. IBS – What's the Difference?

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Apr 11, 2016 | Download Audio

Dr. Rodgers explains the difference between inflammatory bowel disease and irritable bowel syndrome.


Last week, I told you about irritable bowel syndrome, or IBS. Today, I’m going to talk about inflammatory bowel disease and how it differs from IBS.

Hi, I’m Dr. Griffin Rodgers, director of the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases at NIH.

Inflammatory bowel disease, or IBD, is the general name for diseases that cause swelling and irritation of the digestive tract. The most common types of IBD are Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis. Symptoms include abdominal pain, diarrhea, weight loss, blood in the stool, or fever.

People with IBS are identified mainly by their symptoms, some of which are like IBD, such as abdominal pain and changes in bowel habits.

Talk to your doctor if you’re having symptoms of either IBD or IBS. Treatments are available.

For more information, follow us on Twitter @HealthyMoments. This is Dr. Griffin Rodgers with the NIH.

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