What is the main cause of irritable bowel syndrome?

What is the main cause of irritable bowel syndrome?

The exact cause of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is not fully understood, but several factors are thought to contribute to the development of the condition. The main cause of IBS is thought to be related to problems with muscle contractions in the gut, known as motility, which can cause discomfort and changes in bowel habits. These abnormal contractions can be caused by several factors, including:

  • Nervous system dysfunction: problems in the communication between the brain and the gut, known as the brain-gut axis, may cause abnormal muscle contractions and changes in gut hormone levels, leading to IBS symptoms.
  • Gastrointestinal infections: Some research suggests that IBS may develop after an infection in the gut, known as post-infectious IBS (PI-BS).
  • Food sensitivities or allergies: Some people with IBS may have trouble digesting certain foods or have food allergies, which can trigger symptoms.
  • Hormonal changes: women with IBS may find that their symptoms worsen during their menstrual cycle due to hormonal changes.
  • Psychological factors: Stress, anxiety, and depression may worsen IBS symptoms.

It is worth noting that the cause of IBS is often multifactorial, with several factors contributing to the development of the condition. Also, sometimes it is not possible to identify the exact cause.

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