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A Questionnaire for Functional Bowel Disorders

Douglas A. Drossman, MD
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Requests for Reprints: Douglas A. Drossman, MD, Division of Digestive Diseases, University of North Carolina, CB# 7080, 420 Burnett-Womack Building, Chapel Hill, NC 27599-7080.

University of North Carolina
Chapel Hill, North Carolina

Ann Intern Med. 1989;111(8):627-629. doi:10.7326/0003-4819-111-8-627
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The functional bowel disorders are a heterogeneous collection of clinical syndromes (for example, the irritable bowel syndrome, non-ulcer dyspepsia, "irritable" esophagus, chronic abdominal pain) associated with the gastrointestinal tract that have "no known structural (e. g., pathologic or radiologic) abnormalities, or infectious or metabolic causes" (1). As a group these disorders are extremely common and constitute a large health-care burden. In a survey by the National Center for Health Statistics (1979 to 1981), functional gastrointestinal symptoms were reported by almost 3 908 000 persons, two thirds of whom had seen physicians (2). In 1984, patients with these symptoms accounted for


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