A-Z Health Topics

Return to Index
by Polsdorfer R

Symptoms of Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)

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


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.

Revision Information