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Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) Message Board

Abnormal Stool Shapes

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Old 07-21-2007, 05:54 AM   #1
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g2tegsown HB User
Abnormal Stool Shapes

I am a 25 year old male, and for about the last 3 years or so I have been having odd stool shapes. My mother has IBS, she has been scoped several times, and everything is fine, yet she has lots of digestive issues. About 3 or 4 years ago I started drinking coffee, I get up in the morning and I don't eat breakfast but I have a cup of coffee (Not a small one either). Well about half a year or so down the road I started having "flat stools" I didn't think much about it at first, but after awhile I started thinking maybe I should talk to my doctor about it.

So I went and saw him, told him about my situation and he did a physical (including a prostate/anus check), he told me that I was ok and if I had any other problems that were bowel related to let him know.

Well just recently I have been having terrible gas, sometimes easy to pass, sometimes I can't pass it. I get very very mild cramps sometimes, like a feeling of needing to pass gas. I also sometimes have back pains, but thats not abnormal for me at all, and I have been sleeping on a futon for over a year and it's killing my back. My bowel movements have stayed about the same, although when I go in the morning (usually I only go once a day, in the morning after coffee) it usually comes out with great force (I assume from the gas) and is several small pieces accompanied by 1 or 2 larger pieces that usually have a "flat" look to them (When I say flat I mean like rectangular, out of round, more like squeezed).

I think I actually can sometimes feel my lower left area having spasms sometimes as well. Do you think this is IBS? or should I worry that I have Polyps or tumors/cancer? I don't have any blood in my stool, and I never heard anything back from a fecal blood test from my doctor (which is common around here unless anything is wrong).

I am a Hypochondriac, I have Anxiety, and I recently just lost a cousin (not cancer), so I am on my scared health thing again, just wondering what you guys/gals think?

Last edited by g2tegsown; 07-21-2007 at 05:57 AM.

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Old 07-23-2007, 11:32 AM   #2
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g2tegsown HB User
Re: Abnormal Stool Shapes

Well I stopped drinking coffee b/c I remember when I first started having flat stools I quit drinking coffee and they started to return to normal. Well it's been 2 days without coffee and already I am having single peice bowel movements thats are MUCH larger than before. They still have a bit of a "flat/squeezed" look, more oval than round, however if it had been round I definitly would have been "normal". Also it seemed to have a very bumpy texture and looked very hard. It wasn't hard to pass however, came out with no problems.

So if I am already having larger stools wouldn't that indicate that if something was blocking them and making them small and flat, that they wouldn't get bigger? Since they wouldn't be able to fit throught the passage? Or without having some extreme pain?

Last edited by g2tegsown; 07-23-2007 at 11:33 AM.

Old 07-24-2007, 11:07 PM   #3
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Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Seattle, WA USA
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bellyblues HB User
Re: Abnormal Stool Shapes

Stool shape can change for a variety of reasons. Excessive gas that results in propulsive movements can mean small soft stools. Flat, narrow or thin stools are very typical for IBS sufferers. They are also indicative of constipation. It can simply mean there is not enough bulking fiber in your diet to plump them up. It could indicate hemmoroids, either external or internal. Intestinal obstructions are not common and are accompanied by very severe symptoms.

Coffee can certainly wreak havoc on a sensitive gut. It sounds like you may have found a solution for this problem by eliminating this from your diet.

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