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Gas which is passed from the rectum is called flatus. There is great variability among people regarding how often and how much gas is passed. Gas comes from two sources. It is swallowed as we eat and drink, and it is manufactured by bacteria normally present in the colon as they digest residue from food. Some foods, (e.g. beans) characteristically cause more gas because they contain more indigestible residue which enters the colon. Some patients have difficulty expelling gas which results in abdominal distention and cramps. Treatment of excessive gas may involve changes in the diet, methods to reduce air swallowing, and medication. Gaseous complaints resulting in increased belching and or flatus can also be associated with a host of other gastrointestinal disorders.

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