Post-Infectious Functional Gastrointestinal Disorders in Children

Miguel Saps*, Licia Pensabene, Lucio Di Martino, Annamaria Staiano, Joshua Wechsler, Xiaotian Zheng, Carlo Di Lorenzo

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

109 Scopus citations


Objective: To investigate the development of functional gastrointestinal disorders (FGIDs) after an episode of acute bacterial gastroenteritis (AGE) in children. Study design: A cohort study of children 3 to 19 years old with a positive result on a bacterial stool culture. 44 patients in each arm (unidirectional α of 0.05, power of 0.80). Children presenting at two pediatric hospitals (United States and Italy) for AGE who tested positive for bacteria on stool culture (2001-2005) were contacted at least 6 months after the episode. Exposed children were matched with control subjects of similar age and sex consulting to the same hospitals for trauma or well-child visit within 4 weeks of the index case. Symptoms were evaluated with a validated questionnaire for FGIDs assessing pain, diarrhea, and disability. Results: 88 patients (46 boys; mean age, 8.1 years; age range, 3-19 years) were recruited. Bacteria included Salmonella (54%), Campylobacter (32%), and Shigella (14%). 36% of exposed patients and 11% of control subjects complained of abdominal pain (P < .01). 87% had irritable bowel syndrome and 24% had dyspepsia. 56% reported onset of pain following the AGE. Conclusion: There is a significant increase in cases of FGIDs after bacterial infections in children.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)812-816.e1
JournalJournal of Pediatrics
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2008

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health


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