Sylvester Chuks Nwokediuko
Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a functional gastrointestinal disorder with a prevalence that varies according to geographical regions. This study was designed to determine the prevalence of IBS and its subtypes in a population of medical students in South-East Nigeria. This was a descriptive crosssectional study in which clinical students were administered the IBS component of the Rome III diagnostic questionnaire for adult functional gastrointestinal disorders. The responses were analyzed with the scoring algorithm. The mean age of the students (±SD) was 27.25±4.3 years. Fifty two out of the 380 students who completed and returned their questionnaires had IBS which translates to a prevalence of 13.7%, and majority of them (61.5%) were females. The commonest subtype was IBS with constipation alternating with diarrhea (53.8%). However, no female student had constipationpredominant IBS. The prevalence of IBS in a population of medical students was 13.7%. There was a clear female preponderance but IBS-C was more common in males. Environmental factors may be responsible for this symptom pattern.
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