Unexpectedly low prevalence rates of IBS among adult Israeli Jews

Ami D. Sperber, P. Shvartzman, M. Friger, A. Fich

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

35 Scopus citations


The irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and other functional bowel disorders (FBDs) are common functional gastrointestinal disorders. The prevalence of IBS using Rome II criteria is generally lower than with previous criteria. The aim of this study was to determine the prevalence of IBS and other FBDs in the adult Israeli Jewish population, which has not been surveyed to date. A telephone survey was conducted on a representative sample of the study population provided by the Israel Ministry of the Interior. IBS and other FBDs were diagnosed by Rome II criteria. The study population was 981 individuals and the overall response rate was 54%. The mean age was 45.0 years and 55% were females. In all, 2.9% had IBS (females: 3.7%, males: 1.8%, P = 0.08). The rate increased to 4.1% when the Rome II diagnostic criteria were amended to include some chronic alternators who are not picked up by the original scoring system. Approximately 26% of the respondents had a functional lower gastrointestinal (GI) disorder (females: 32.1%, males: 17.7%, P < 0.0001). Prevalence rates for IBS among Israeli Jewish adults are lower than rates reported from most countries, despite the high level of stress resulting from Israel's geopolitical circumstances. Possible reasons for this low prevalence are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)207-211
Number of pages5
JournalNeurogastroenterology and Motility
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1 Apr 2005


  • Epidemiology
  • Functional bowel disorders
  • Irritable bowel syndrome
  • Israel


Dive into the research topics of 'Unexpectedly low prevalence rates of IBS among adult Israeli Jews'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this