stock image of two women talking.What are Functional Bowel Disorders (FBD)

Functional Bowel Disorders (or FBD) is a term that describes a problem with how your stomach and bowels function or work. Irritable bowel syndrome and functional dyspepsia are functional bowel disorders. All the organs are normal, but there are still signs that something is wrong. Upper gastrointestinal (GI) symptoms include nausea, feeling bloated, and stomach pain. Lower GI symptoms include constipation, diarrhea, and stomach pain. It can be a challenge for your doctor to diagnose an FBD since symptoms vary. Your doctor will also want to check that other things are not causing your symptoms.

Functional bowel disorders are very common. Still, many people do not seek advice because they do not know where to go for help. They may also be afraid or ashamed to talk about their problems. Please keep in mind that you are not alone. Millions of people have a type of FBD. In the Functional Bowel Disorders Clinic, we are here to help when your symptoms keep you from doing your normal daily activities. Let our team show how their caring and expert knowledge can come up with a plan that is right for you!

Normal Digestive System

Two common types of FBD include Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) and Functional Dyspepsia (FD). Click on a link below or visit our page of Helpful Web Sites to learn more:

Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) describes a group of symptoms that include lower stomach pain that may go away after having a bowel movement. It can also include bloating, constipation, and/or diarrhea. While more women suffer with IBS, men can have it as well. It is estimated that about 20% of Americans have IBS. IBS cannot be diagnosed from an X-ray or a blood test. It is based on the symptoms the person reports to their doctor after other causes are ruled out.

Functional Dyspepsia (FD) is a condition that can include pain above your belly button, bloating, and nausea (often without vomiting). This disorder has also been called “nonulcer dyspepsia” or “nervous stomach.” A person with FD may also feel fullness in the stomach that prevents them from eating a normal meal. You may also have pain and/or bloating for many hours after eating. Unlike IBS, the pain does not get better after going to the bathroom. Some doctors think that FD happens when food sits in the stomach too long or the muscles in the upper GI system are not working well. The truth is that we are unclear as to what the exact cause is.

Again, your doctor will want to make sure that another problem is not causing your symptoms. While there are no cures for IBS or functional dyspepsia, neither will cause death nor turn into something worse like cancer. Most people can learn to control their symptoms by decreasing stress, changing their diet, and sometimes taking medicine. Living with these problems can be very stressful to you and your family, and the team from the University of Michigan Functional Bowel Disorders Program is here to help you regain control of your life.