Pediatric Annals

Feature Article 

Treatment Options for Functional Gastrointestinal DisordersFrom Empiric to Complementary Approaches

K. Lynette Whitfield, MD; Robert J. Shulman, MD

Abstract

Functional gastrointestinal disorders (FGIDs) remain a common problem in the pediatric age group. These conditions were first recognized by Apley in 1958 when he coined the earlier term ‘recurrent abdominal pain’ (RAP) for a group of children with recurrent or persistent abdominal pain that interfered with functional daily living and had no evident organic etiology. Community-based studies from around the world demonstrate that 10% to 46% of all children meet the criteria for RAP. As FGIDs continue to cause emotional and financial burdens on affected families, efforts are being made to better categorize FGIDs as a symptom-based diagnosis, understand their pathophysiology, and investigate effective treatment options.

Abstract

Functional gastrointestinal disorders (FGIDs) remain a common problem in the pediatric age group. These conditions were first recognized by Apley in 1958 when he coined the earlier term ‘recurrent abdominal pain’ (RAP) for a group of children with recurrent or persistent abdominal pain that interfered with functional daily living and had no evident organic etiology. Community-based studies from around the world demonstrate that 10% to 46% of all children meet the criteria for RAP. As FGIDs continue to cause emotional and financial burdens on affected families, efforts are being made to better categorize FGIDs as a symptom-based diagnosis, understand their pathophysiology, and investigate effective treatment options.

Functional gastrointestinal disorders (FGIDs) remain a common problem in the pediatric age group. These conditions were first recognized by Apley in 1958 when he coined the earlier term ‘recurrent abdominal pain’ (RAP) for a group of children with recurrent or persistent abdominal pain that interfered with functional daily living and had no evident organic etiology. Community-based studies from around the world demonstrate that 10% to 46% of all children meet the criteria for RAP. As FGIDs continue to cause emotional and financial burdens on affected families, efforts are being made to better categorize FGIDs as a symptom-based diagnosis, understand their pathophysiology, and investigate effective treatment options.

10.3928/00904481-20090501-11

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