Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a chronic abdominal pain syndrome associated with diarrhea, constipation, or a mixture of both. It is of particular relevance to psychology due to its negative impact on quality of life, its association with psychological comorbidity, and its positive response to psychological interventions, particularly cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and gut-directed hypnotherapy. Historically, IBS was considered from a psychosomatic framework, commonly viewed as a physical manifestation of worry or somatization. This is no longer the case—major advances in the field have shifted focus toward an evidence-based, biopsychosocial model centered on the complex interaction between the brain and the gut.


IBS affects 11% of people worldwide, with the subtypes of diarrhea predominant (IBS-D) and mixed (IBS-M) being slightly more prevalent than constipation predominant ...

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