Functional Gastrointestinal Disorders

The close relationship between gastrointestinal function and emotional life is perhaps best demonstrated by the functional gastrointestinal disorders (FGIDs), defined as chronic or recurrent gastrointestinal symptoms in the absence of explanatory structural or biochemical abnormalities (Drossman et al. 1990). The term functional has increasingly been used descriptively in general medicine to refer to the experience of physical symptoms where standard medical evaluation reveals no disease or biophysical process sufficient to explain the symptoms or their impact. The Rome III criteria (Drossman et al. 2006), the most recent iteration of the widely accepted classification system for FGIDs, offer several specific diagnostic categories for children and adolescents that have been developed based on clinical experience and expert consensus in conjunction with literature review (Rasquin et al. 2006). We focus on FGIDs associated with abdominal pain and cyclic vomiting syndrome.

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