Bowel spasm is the symptom of certain gastrointestinal conditions such as ulcerative colitis and irritable bowel syndrome. Still not everyone who is suffering from bowel spasms also suffers from the previously mentioned diseases. So in case that a person tends to have frequent bowl spasms this has to be reported to a doctor and the actual cause of the spasms will be found. This way some serious gastrointestinal conditions can be either confirmed or ruled out. Even if bowel spasms become more intensive they need to be reported to the physician.
Irritable Bowel Syndrome
Irritable bowel syndrome is a disease which has not been fully understood yet. It is almost always attributed to those patients who complain about bowel spasms and in case that their other medical tests present with no physically noticeable abnormalities. This medical condition can apart from bowel spasms present with a change in bowel activity. A patient may suffer from diarrhea or he/she may complain about chronic constipation. Even a combination of diarrhea and constipation is possible. This diagnosis can be set only in patients who are suffering from previously mentioned symptoms at least three months per year.
One hypothesis says that irritable bowel syndrome may be connected to certain mental conditions such as depression or anxiety. Because of this the treatment of majority of patients is focused on elimination of the damaging factors. Relaxation techniques may help a lot, strict dietary regimes and certain medications that will help patients to cope with psychological symptoms.
Ulcerative colitis also presents with bowel spasms. Basically, the symptoms of ulcerative colitis resemble those of irritable bowel syndrome so that many doctors stay confused and cannot differentiate the disease. In ulcerative colitis apart from bowel spasms patient also suffers from diarrhea. The only difference is that in ulcerative colitis there may be traces of blood in the stool. Ulcerative colitis is much more serious condition comparing to irritable bowel syndrome. Namely, in ulcerative colitis the colon may be seriously damaged by formation of ulcers and in some patients this is predisposing factor for colon cancer. In most extreme cases after frequent and aggressive attacks parts of the colon can be so damaged that they need to be removed. Ulcerative colitis is most likely a hereditary condition.
Bowel spasms may be present in some other gastrointestinal conditions such as intestinal obstruction. Intestinal obstruction is severe and life threatening condition. This means that a diagnosis of intestinal obstruction has to be set quickly and surgical procedure performed as soon as possible.