What is spastic colon?
Answer From Purna Kashyap, M.B.B.S.
Spastic colon is a term that's sometimes used to refer to irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), a common disorder characterized by abdominal cramping, abdominal pain, bloating, constipation and diarrhea.
The term "spastic colon" describes the increase in spontaneous contractions (motility) of muscles in the small and large intestines associated with IBS. These contractions are sometimes called spasms. However, there are several reasons why people with IBS may experience symptoms, and hence the term "spastic colon" isn't an accurate synonym for IBS.
The cause and severity of IBS varies from person to person. Treatment is aimed at relieving symptoms and may include changing your diet, increasing physical activity, reducing stress and, for some people, taking anticholinergic medications to help treat spasms.
Purna Kashyap, M.B.B.S.
Nov. 04, 2020
From Mayo Clinic to your inbox
Sign up for free, and stay up to date on research advancements, health tips and current health topics, like COVID-19, plus expertise on managing health.
ErrorEmail field is required
ErrorInclude a valid email address
To provide you with the most relevant and helpful information, and understand which
information is beneficial, we may combine your email and website usage information with
other information we have about you. If you are a Mayo Clinic patient, this could
include protected health information. If we combine this information with your protected
health information, we will treat all of that information as protected health
information and will only use or disclose that information as set forth in our notice of
privacy practices. You may opt-out of email communications at any time by clicking on
the unsubscribe link in the e-mail.
Thank you for subscribing
Our Housecall e-newsletter will keep you up-to-date on the latest health information.
Sorry something went wrong with your subscription
Please, try again in a couple of minutes
See more Expert Answers
- Ferri FF. Irritable bowel syndrome. In: Ferri's Clinical Advisor 2021. Elsevier; 2021. https://www.clinicalkey.com. Accessed Oct. 20, 2020.
- Wald A. Pathophysiology of irritable bowel syndrome. https://www.uptodate.com/contents/search. Accessed Oct. 20, 2020.
- Kashyap PC (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic. Oct. 20, 2020.