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Irritable Bowel Evaluation
Testing is usually required to make the diagnosis of irritable bowel disease. Tests help to detect other conditions that cause symptoms similar to irritable bowel disease.
Tests that may be used to evaluate irritable bowel disease include:
- Complete blood count
- Liver profile
- Kidney profile
- Intestinal tissue biopsy
- Allows a doctor to look inside, take tissue specimens, and remove any questionable growths or polyps.
Imaging studies that may be used to evaluate irritable bowel disease include:
- Barium enema
- CT scanning of the abdomen
- MRI scan of the abdomen
- Virtual colonoscopy:
- Uses a special type of CT scanner that takes many pictures of the colon in super thin slices. A computer reassembles the images into a 3-D model of the colon. The more slices the CT scanner is capable of taking in rapid succession, the better the image quality.
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PubMed Irritable Bowel References
- El-Serag HB, Pilgrim P, Schoenfeld P. Systemic review: Natural history of irritable bowel syndrome. Aliment Pharmacol Ther. 2004 Apr 15;19(8):861-70. 
- Hungin AP, Chang L, Locke GR, Dennis EH, Barghout V. Irritable bowel syndrome in the United States: prevalence, symptom patterns and impact. Aliment Pharmacol Ther. 2005 Jun 1;21(11):1365-75. 
- Payne S. Sex, gender, and irritable bowel syndrome: making the connections. Gend Med. 2004 Aug;1(1):18-28. 
- Spanier JA, Howden CW, Jones MP. A systematic review of alternative therapies in the irritable bowel syndrome. Arch Intern Med. 2003 Feb 10;163(3):265-74.