Your IBS Diagnosis Check List


How many patients suffering from gut disorder do you see per week? How many are diagnosed with Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)? Do you know that some patients have struggle more than 4 years before receiving a formal medical diagnosis of IBS?

Up to 75% of individuals with Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) may be undiagnosed. Properly diagnosing IBS can be challenging and uncertain, it is a complex disease which is difficult to explain to your patient during an average consultation.

Therefore, Pr. Jean-Marc Sabaté, Pr. Jan Tack, Dr. Pedro Costa Moreira and the Biocodex Microbiota Institute have created a check list tool in order to better diagnose IBS and communicate with your patient. This IBS tool has received the endorsement of the World Gastroenterology Organisation.

Created 29 November 2022
Updated 11 June 2024
Actu GP : La dysbiose vaginale à l’origine de certains cas d’infertilité ?

About this article

Created 29 November 2022
Updated 11 June 2024

Table of contents

Table of contents

IBS Diagnostic Tool Pr. J Tack EN

52% Just 1 in 2 people having suffered from a digestive condition involving the microbiota had made the connection

What you will find in the IBS diagnosis tool?

Dear healthcare professionnal, for the first time you will find all the information you need in one usefull IBS diagnosis tool:

  • Simple figures to explain the disease, the symptoms and the pathophysiology
  • The diagnosis criteria and the IBS subtypes
  • A check list of red flags to be investigated to help you confirm your diagnosis
  • The list of investigations that are needed, the one recommended in specific case and finally those not useful as routine test
  • The four general management concepts
  • A frequency proposal to conduct the follow up care

How to define Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)?

What do we know about the pathophysiology?

How to make a confident diagnosis?

What are the warning signs to be excluded?

Which investigations are needed?

What are the general management concepts?

When to schedule a follow-up care? 

Created by

 Professor Jean-Marc Sabaté

Professor Jean-Marc Sabaté is working as Consultant in the Department of Gastroenterology, Avicenne University Hospital, Bobigny, France, and is Professor in Gastroenterology at the Sorbonne Paris Nord University. Since 2002, he pursues his research in the Intestinal Bowel Syndrome (IBS) field at the INSERM unit U-987 « Physiopathology and clinical pharmacology of pain » (Ambroise Paré Hospital, France). He is the co-founder and President of scientific council of the association APSSII (French Association of patients suffering from intestinal bowel syndrome).

Prof. Jan Tack

Professor Jan Tack is currently a Head of Clinic in the Department of Gastroenterology, a Professor in Internal Medicine and Chairman of the Department of Clinical and Experimental Medicine at the University of Leuven, Belgium. Professor Jan Tack is also a Principal Researcher in the Translational Research Center for Gastrointestinal Disorders (TARGID) at the University of Leuven. He is currently one of the top clinical and basic investigators in the field of gastrointestinal motility. He is the President of the Rome Foundation for Functional Gastrointestinal Disorders.

Dr. Pedro Costa Moreira

Doctor Pedro Costa Moreira is working as a gastroenterologist at Centro Hospitalar do Tâmega e Sousa - Penafiel, Porto, Portugal. He took a special dedication to the fields of biliary-pancreatic diseases and advanced endoscopy (endoscopic ultrasound, endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography/ERCP and enteral dilation/stenting procedures). At the same time, he is a collaborator and scientific advisor in a digital platform directed to primary care physician’s continuous medical education ( He began his medical training at Centro Hospitalar de São João, Porto, Portugal.

Endorsed by

The World Gastroenterology Organisation

The World Gastroenterology Organisation (WGO) is a federation of 119 Member Societies and four Regional Associations of gastroenterology representing over 60,000 individual members worldwide. The WGO focuses on the improvement of standards in training, education, and the practice of Gastroenterology, Hepatology and other related disciplines worldwide.


The APSSII is an association of patients suffering from irritable bowel syndrome (IBS, also called functional colopathy). Its purpose is to inform about the disease, to promote research, and to allow patients to come out of isolation.

Get the official printed tool! 

Ask your local representative to get your fan deck brochure of the IBS diagnosis tool. 

To know more

Everything you need to know about Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)

Exclusive materials dedicated to Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)

1. Barbara G, Grover M, Bercik P, et al. Rome Foundation Working Team Report on Post-Infection Irritable Bowel Syndrome. Gastroenterology. 2019;156(1):46-58.e7.

2. Black CJ, Ford AC. Global burden of irritable bowel syndrome: trends, predictions and risk factors. Nat Rev Gastroenterol Hepatol 2020; 17: 473-86.

3. Blake MR, Raker JM, Whelan K. Validity and reliability of the Bristol Stool Form Scale in healthy adults and patients with diarrhoea-predominant irritable bowel syndrome. Aliment Pharmacol Ther. 2016;44(7):693-703.

4. Carbone F, Van den Houte K, Besard L, et al. Diet or medication in primary care patients with IBS: the DOMINO study - a randomised trial supported by the Belgian Health Care Knowledge Centre (KCE Trials Programme) and the Rome Foundation Research Institute [published online ahead of print, 2022 Apr 28]. Gut. 2022;gutjnl-2021-325821.

5. Collins, S. A role for the gut microbiota in IBS. Nat Rev Gastroenterol Hepatol 11, 497–505 (2014).

6. Drossman DA, Tack J. Rome Foundation Clinical Diagnostic Criteria for Disorders of Gut-Brain Interaction. Gastroenterology. 2022 Mar;162(3):675-679

7. Ford AC, Sperber AD, Corsetti M, et al. Irritable bowel syndrome. Lancet. 2020 Nov 21;396(10263):1675-1688.

8. Fukudo S, Okumura T, Inamori M, et al. Evidence-based clinical practice guidelines for irritable bowel syndrome 2020. J Gastroenterol. 2021;56(3):193-217.

9. Hillestad EMR, van der Meeren A, Nagaraja BH, et al. Gut bless you: The microbiota-gut-brain axis in irritable bowel syndrome. World J Gastroenterol. 2022 Jan 28;28(4):412-431.


11. Kindt S, Louis H, De Schepper H, et al. Belgian consensus on irritable bowel syndrome. Acta Gastroenterol Belg. 2022;85(2):360-382.

12. Lacy BE, Pimentel M, Brenner DM, et al. ACG Clinical Guideline: Management of Irritable Bowel Syndrome. Am J Gastroenterol. 2021;116(1):17-44.

13. Longstreth GF, Thompson WG, Chey WD, et al. Functional bowel disorders [published correction appears in Gastroenterology. 2006 Aug;131(2):688]. Gastroenterology. 2006;130(5):1480-1491.

14. Mearin F, Lacy BE, Chang L, et al. Bowel Disorders. Gastroenterology. 2016;S0016-5085(16)00222-5.

15. Moayyedi P, Mearin F, Azpiroz F, et al. Irritable bowel syndrome diagnosis and management: A simplified algorithm for clinical practice. United European Gastroenterol J. 2017;5(6):773-788.

16. Savarino E, Zingone F, Barberio B, et al. Functional bowel disorders with diarrhoea: Clinical guidelines of the United European Gastroenterology and European Society for Neurogastroenterology and Motility. United European Gastroenterol J. 2022;10(6):556-584.

17. Sayuk GS, Wolf R, Chang L. Comparison of Symptoms, Healthcare Utilization, and Treatment in Diagnosed and Undiagnosed Individuals With Diarrhea-Predominant Irritable Bowel Syndrome. Am J Gastroenterol. 2017 Jun;112(6):892-899.

18. Simrén, M., Tack, J. New treatments and therapeutic targets for IBS and other functional bowel disorders. Nat Rev Gastroenterol Hepatol 15, 589–605 (2018).

19. Sperber AD, Bangdiwala SI, Drossman DA, et al. Worldwide Prevalence and Burden of Functional Gastrointestinal Disorders, Results of Rome Foundation Global Study. Gastroenterology. 2021;160(1):99-114.e3.

20. Sperber AD. Epidemiology and Burden of Irritable Bowel Syndrome: An International Perspective. Gastroenterol Clin North Am. 2021 Sep;50(3):489-503.

21. Vasant DH, Paine PA, Black CJ, et al. British Society of Gastroenterology guidelines on the management of irritable bowel syndrome. Gut. 2021;70(7):1214-1240.