Definition of IBS

IBS is a chronic gastrointestinal disorder associated with disturbances of intestinal motility, sensation, and secretion, resulting in recurrent abdominal discomfort and changes in bowel habits1,2

IBS accounts for approximately 12% of patients seen in primary care3

IBS accounts for 30-50% of referrals to gastroenterologists4

IBS is subtyped based on a patient’s predominant stool pattern, including both stool form and consistency1


>25% hard or lumpy
<25% loose or watery


>25% loose or watery
<25% hard or lumpy

(mixed pattern)

>25% hard or lumpy
>25% loose or watery


<25% hard or lumpy
<25% loose or watery

IBS is a highly prevalent disorder associated with significant emotional distress, impaired quality of life, disability, and high healthcare costs3-5

An estimated 35 million Americans are affected by IBS5,6

52% of patients with IBS say their IBS is extremely or very bothersome7

67% of patients with IBS experienced symptoms for >1 year before seeing a healthcare professional7

IBS results in an annual estimated total of $30 billion in direct and indirect costs in the US4

Learn more about IBS


  1. Longstreth GF et al. Gastroenterology 2006; 130: 1480-1491.
  2. Ford AC et al. Am J Gastroenterol 2018; 113 (Suppl 2): 1-18.
  3. Drossman DA et al. Gastroenterology 2002; 123: 2108-2131.
  4. Hulisz D. J Manag Care Pharm 2004; 10: 299-309.
  5. Canavan C et al. Clin Epidemiol 2014; 6: 71-80.
  6. Saito YA et al. Am J Gastroenterol 2002; 97: 1910-1915.
  7. American Gastroenterological Association. IBS in America Survey. 2015. Available at: