If you suffer from irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), or care about someone who does, this site is for you. My name is Sophie Lee and I have had IBS for over 20 years. I am a reluctant expert on this painful, misunderstood disorder and I started IBS Tales in 2003.
Information on the symptoms, causes and diagnosis of IBS, plus oddments, in the About IBS section.
Why create a site like IBS Tales?
Because I've had IBS since I was 12, and I know what IBS sufferers go through. We suffer from a disorder that is not only painful but also incredibly embarrassing. We get told by our doctors that our problems are in our minds or that IBS is untreatable.
Friends and colleagues tell us that IBS doesn't exist or that it's cured with a bit of bran. Family members think that we are exaggerating or using our symptoms as an excuse.
And everybody thinks that IBS is no big deal. They're all wrong! The stories on IBS Tales show just how this disorder can affect your life, your work, and your sanity, and it's about time that we started getting the respect that we deserve.
The stories and treatment reviews also show that it is possible to beat IBS. There are drugs that works, there are supplements that work, and there are diets that work, and no-one who suffers from IBS should feel alone. There is a way out, and I very much hope that you find comfort, understanding and support right here on IBS Tales.
Disclaimer: This site has been written entirely by IBS sufferers, not qualified medical professionals, and does not offer medical advice. The information on this site does not replace any advice received from health professionals.
What IBS sufferers (and a doctor) have said about IBS Tales...
'Today I found this website, read one of the stories and cried. It is such a relief to know that other people feel this too. The fear I feel is indescribable when I know I need to get to the toilet, and I know what is in store. Sometimes when I'm in pain I wonder if childbirth will be as bad as this.' Diana
'I just want to say that I spent an hour reading these stories with tears in my eyes, a knot in my stomach and a pair of lighter shoulders. I cannot believe that I am not alone in every aspect of discomfort and misery!' Lynn
'For the last year or more, this website has given me the courage to begin to speak out - publicly - about this wretched condition. From the bottom of my heart, thank you.' Rebecca
'I have just discovered this website and it has given me much comfort as no-one else understands the embarrassment, worry and pain unless they have IBS.' Alicia
'I'm now 20 and suffer from IBS. I try and make light of it but I actually cried reading this website as it was the first time I didn't feel like an utter freak. Thank you so much.' Lisa
'I've just received a copy of Sophie's Story and you mention a gluten-free diet so I'm now going to try that because there really is nothing else left. You have really been an inspiration to me and I thank you for that.' Linda
'A fascinating and moving site for anyone with IBS, their relatives and doctors.' From the book IBS: Answers At Your Fingertips by Dr Udi Shmueli, Consultant Gastroenterologist at Northampton General Hospital, UK