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Is the Association of IBS with Fibromyalgia and Other Non-gastrointestinal Functional Disorders Important and Why?

Patients usually go to doctors with symptoms, not with the names of diseases or conditions. The doctor's task is to make sense of the patient's complaints within the framework of medical diagnoses and recognized diseases. But many patients have symptoms that remain unexplained after the diagnostic process is exhausted. This is the case because modern medicine focuses on diseases that have a basis in the structure or anatomy of the body systems rather than functional disorders that have a basis in how the systems work. In effect, symptoms remain "unexplained" not because they cannot be explained but because some doctors do not know how to explain them. Revised and updated 2009.

Topics: Fact Sheet, Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), Other Disorders/Symptoms

About the Author

  • Ami D. Sperber, MD

    Associate Professor of Medicine, Department of Gastroenterology, Soroka Medical Center; Faculty of the Health Sciences, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Beer-Sheva, Israel

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