Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is one of the most common gastrointestinal-related conditions. In this review, the safety and efficacy of alosetron, a potent and selective 5-HT3 receptor antagonist, in the treatment of IBS are discussed. Alosetron has been shown to produce statistically significant improvements in abdominal pain, stool consistency, stool frequency and urgency in female IBS patients. By contrast, no consistent improvement has been seen in male IBS patients treated with alosetron. The only adverse event of note with alosetron was constipation, and this represents a class effect of 5-HT3 receptor antagonists. In conclusion, alosetron is a safe and effective treatment for female IBS patients.