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Bacterial gastroenteritis and irritable bowel syndrome

Last reviewed dd mmm yyyy. Last edited dd mmm yyyy

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Bacterial gastroenteritis is a risk factor for developing the irritable bowel syndrome.

After an episode of bacterial gastroenteritis, one patient in 14 will develop the classical features of IBS.

Risk factors for developing post-gastroenteritis IBS include:

  • female gender
  • long period of diarrhoea


  1. Neal, KR, Hebden, J. & Spiller, R. (1997). Prevalence of gastrointestinal symptoms six months after bacterial gastroenteritis and risk factors for development of the irritable bowel symdrome: postal survey of patients. BMJ; 314: 779-82.

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