Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is characterized by abdominal pain accompanied by a change in the frequency and/or consistency of stools at least once a week and for at least 2 months, without being able to attribute these symptoms to disease after a proper medical evaluation.
People with IBS have episodes of abdominal pain with constipation or diarrhoea, or constipation and diarrhoea alternately. Sometimes these episodes can be related to stressors in our surroundings (an exam, a job interview, a sports competition, etc.) but sometimes they present in apparently calm periods.
The episodes of abdominal pain with diarrhoea may be disabling and interfere with daily activities.