Acute Abdominal Pain in Irritable Bowel Syndrome Patients: Not Always an Acute Exacerbation


To the Editor We read with interest the case report by Wildi et al. [1] published in the June 2006 issue of the Digestive Diseases and Sciences. The authors highlighted an important aspect of managing chronic conditions such as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). Like many clinicians looking after IBS patients, when these patients present with abdominal complaints, the first thought is often that it is an exacerbation of the underlying bowel disorder. The majority of the time, these assumptions are correct. However, the clinician has to be alert and always consider the possibility of other pathologies, even though the clinical presentations are suggestive of IBS exacerbations. We similarly encountered a case of known IBS who presented with abdominal pain that turned out to have a surgical etiology. A 36-year-old man presented to the Accident and Emergency department with lower abdominal discomfort and bloating. He was diagnosed with IBS and chronic hepatitis B infection a few years ago and had been under regular follow-up. He had undergone a colonoscopy previously, which only showed internal hemorrhoids. He was treated with fiber supplementation and antispasmodic agents, which settled his symptoms. Prior to this, he had infrequent mild exacerbations. In the current presentation, he was afebrile and appeared to be in slight discomfort. Abdominal examination revealed mild tenderness without any guarding or

DOI: 10.1007/s10620-006-9649-4

Cite this paper

@article{Chong2006AcuteAP, title={Acute Abdominal Pain in Irritable Bowel Syndrome Patients: Not Always an Acute Exacerbation}, author={Vui Heng Chong and Chean Leung Chong}, journal={Digestive Diseases and Sciences}, year={2006}, volume={52}, pages={2956-2957} }