Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) belongs to functional gastrointestinal disorders and is characterized by abdominal pain and change in stool consistency and/or bowel habits. Etiological factors include gastrointestinal peristalsis disturbances, visceral hypersensitivity, chronic inflammation of the mucous membrane, dysbacteremia, intestinal infections, psychosomatic and nutritional factors. Gastrointestinal motility disturbances in case of IBS are manifested by the inhibition of the intestinal passage, which favors the development of constipation or occurrence of diarrhea.
<bold>The aim of the study</bold> was to evaluate IBS symptoms and demonstrate the relationship between physical activity and place of residence amongst Warsaw University students.
<bold>Material and methods.</bold> The study was conducted in march, 2014 using a specific questionnaire, amongst Warsaw University students. The study group comprised 120 female patients, aged between 19 and 27 years (M=23.43; SD=1.29). The chi-square test was used for analysis, p<0.05 was considered as statistically significant.
<bold>Results.</bold> The BMI of investigated patients ranged between 16.30-31.22 kg/m2 (M=21.27; SD=2.71). The majority of respondents (76.6%) weighed within the normal limits. Abdominal pain or discomfort occurred more frequently in the group of students who considered their physical activity as low. In case of respondents with a low physical activity bowel movement disorders and stool continence changes occurred more often, as compared to those with moderate physical activity. The most common symptom was rectal tenesmus, the least common-presence of mucous in the stool. Analysis showed that students with low physical activity were more frequently absent from school/work, due to abdominal symptoms. The respondents with moderate activity more often considered their abdominal symptoms, being associated with stress.
<bold>Conclusions.</bold> IBS symptoms are common amongst Warsaw University students. In case of respondents with low physical activity, abdominal pain or discomfort occurred more often. It has been demonstrated that diet and stress might contribute to the occurrence of abdominal symptoms, being evidence of IBS.
Financed by the National Centre for Research and Development under grant No. SP/I/1/77065/10 by the strategic scientific research and experimental development program:
SYNAT - “Interdisciplinary System for Interactive Scientific and Scientific-Technical Information”.