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Old 01-22-2013, 08:26 PM   #1
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Chronic Constipation - Bowel Disorder?

Hi everyone. I have struggled with constipation my whole life, at just ten years old I was admitted to hospital and after some X-rays and tests I was advised that I had a section of bowel that was "lazy" - at this time I was told I needed to add one glass of Metamucil + 3 senekot and several oranges per day to my intake. I still would be lucky if I would open my bowels once per week.

Unfortunately when I had my son, I sustained a serious injury to my pelvis and have undergone some procedures - one included having Botox injected into my pelvic wall, which lasted 9 months - during this time, I was required to catheterise my bladded and use enemas and suppositories for my bowels as there was simply no pelvic muscle function.

Five years on and constipation has become an increasing concern in my daily life - I often go up to three weeks without success to open my bowels. I take 3 senekot per day, live an active lifestyle, eat very well (and clean), often even an enema will not move anything even though I know it has been at minimum a few days since going to the toilet!

I have obviously spoken to the GP about this, but I don't know how seriously she took me, she prescribed enemas and told me to take time out each day to sit on the toilet - this is not the problem, something is physically wrong. Last week I was so bound that I had to take Dulcolax (which is an absolute last resort as I feel like I am going to DIE when I take it!), and the cramping was so severe for over an hour, but nothing would happen until I also did an enema!! I spent the entire night from 1am to 4am on the toilet with vomiting, but it did clean my bowels - but it makes me sick for days afterward.

I can not see a new GP as they are not taking new patients here. The only time I am able to open my bowels naturally is the day before and during my menses. I feel yuck all of the time and taking laxatives long term is obviously just going to add to the problem.

Do I need to push my GP to look further into this or am I possible overreacting? Any advice would be appreciated!

 
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Old 01-22-2013, 10:30 PM   #2
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Re: Chronic Constipation - Bowel Disorder?

Quote:
Originally Posted by EllaEnchanted View Post
Hi everyone. I have struggled with constipation my whole life, at just ten years old I was admitted to hospital and after some X-rays and tests I was advised that I had a section of bowel that was "lazy" - at this time I was told I needed to add one glass of Metamucil + 3 senekot and several oranges per day to my intake. I still would be lucky if I would open my bowels once per week.

Unfortunately when I had my son, I sustained a serious injury to my pelvis and have undergone some procedures - one included having Botox injected into my pelvic wall, which lasted 9 months - during this time, I was required to catheterise my bladded and use enemas and suppositories for my bowels as there was simply no pelvic muscle function.

Five years on and constipation has become an increasing concern in my daily life - I often go up to three weeks without success to open my bowels. I take 3 senekot per day, live an active lifestyle, eat very well (and clean), often even an enema will not move anything even though I know it has been at minimum a few days since going to the toilet!

I have obviously spoken to the GP about this, but I don't know how seriously she took me, she prescribed enemas and told me to take time out each day to sit on the toilet - this is not the problem, something is physically wrong. Last week I was so bound that I had to take Dulcolax (which is an absolute last resort as I feel like I am going to DIE when I take it!), and the cramping was so severe for over an hour, but nothing would happen until I also did an enema!! I spent the entire night from 1am to 4am on the toilet with vomiting, but it did clean my bowels - but it makes me sick for days afterward.

I can not see a new GP as they are not taking new patients here. The only time I am able to open my bowels naturally is the day before and during my menses. I feel yuck all of the time and taking laxatives long term is obviously just going to add to the problem.

Do I need to push my GP to look further into this or am I possible overreacting? Any advice would be appreciated!
I understand your pain and misery with a lifetime of being constipated. I have had this problem all of my life since from very early childhood. I was also hospitalized when I was very young for severe constipation. i remember my mom giving me a glycerin suppository and an enema after not going for days on end. Even with the suppository and enema, I still had to push down very hard on my lower abdominal area and push as hard as I could to be able to pass the very hard stool. Even now as an adult if I go more than 48 hours without having a bowel movement then by the 3 rd day I am having to force myself to go. It hurts so bad that I have tears streaming down my face just trying to go.
What I have learned over the last year and half in order to keep my bowels moving regularly I must do these three things every single day:
1) Drink at least 64 oz. a day of water.
2) Eat a diet very high in fiber 25-30 grams a day.
3) Having a set time schedule for sitting on the toilet every day to have a bowel movement. I allow up to 30 minutes to move my bowels. I found that if I listen to relaxing music and do slow deep breathing exercises that it makes it painless to move my bowels. When i eat and drink whatt I should the day before then I have no problem having a bowel movement within 5-10 minutes of sitting on the toilet.
I know know I can't allow myself to go beyond 48 hours without moving m bowels. If I reach that time frame and haven't been able to move my bowels then I use only a glycerin suppository. It takes about 20-30 minutes for the suppository to work. I don't get cramps with glycerin suppository and I don't get sick to my stomach either.
These are the foods I have found to work the best for me to help me to go every day: oatmeal with flax seed and cinnamon, 6 stewed prunes or apricots, pears,acorn and butternut squash,pears,pumpkin,spinach,strawberrie s,watermelon,oranges,raisins. If I eat at least 1 fruit in the morning with my breakfast and 1 fruit at lunch, and 2 vegetables at dinner then I will move my bowels within 20 minutes of getting up in the morning even before I get into the shower.
Now when I get lazy and don't do my daily routine then I pay the price of not being to move my bowels without a lot pain in trying to go.
I never hear doctors tell their patients to make time to sit on the toilet to move your bowels rather than using all these harsh stimulant laxatives. If you eat right and drink enough water it sure will make it a lot easier to move your bowels on a daily basis. It took me almost 50 years to learn this for myself without any doctor's advice. i sure hope this will help to be able to become constipation free very soon !!

 
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Old 01-22-2013, 10:48 PM   #3
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Re: Chronic Constipation - Bowel Disorder?

There is a condition called megacolon or Hirschsprung's disease that can cause serious, lifelong constipation. It is caused by a congenital absence of nerve fibers in a section of the colon, usually descending or sigmoid, and stool passes to that point, then gets stuck there because there are no nerves to propel it along. It is diagnosed with a barium enema, and treated with surgical resection of that portion of bowel. It is worth getting the xray done just to rule that out. The other condition that can cause severe constipation is gluten intolerance. I would look into that if xray is normal. Three weeks without a BM is not your normal case of constipation. You deserve a thorough workup from a GI specialist, but your PCP can order the barium enema xray and gluten tests.

 
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Old 01-23-2013, 04:13 PM   #4
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Re: Chronic Constipation - Bowel Disorder?

Thank you both for your replies. I will definitely mention these possibilities to my GP and ask to be referred to a specialist to get this sorted out. I had actually considered the possibility of gluten intolerance myself. Thank you again.

 
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