Are we more constipated than we think?

6th June 2019

Credit @BBC – to read the full article, click here

Doctors and the public are at odds over the symptoms of constipation, leaving some people without the advice or treatment they need, researchers say.

Researchers at King’s College London say a new definition for constipation is needed, based on patient experiences.

Constipation is a common symptom, affecting around one in seven people. It refers to a difficulty opening the bowels – but the way it is diagnosed varies widely.

The researchers say this list of six groups of symptoms could help form a new definition of constipation:

  • abdominal discomfort, pain and bloating – clothes not fitting as well as usual
  • rectal discomfort – bleeding from pushing too hard, pain or burning sensation in the anal area
  • infrequent bowel movements and hard stools – normal can range from three times a day to three times a week
  • sensory dysfunction – not having the urge to go or a sense of incomplete evacuation
  • flatulence and bloating – noisy or smelly wind
  • faecal incontinence – uncontrolled leakage or rectal bleeding

Our CEO Julie Harrington said:

“Listening to what patients say is important. Patients are the experts, by experience, and when they come together with specialists, that’s the sweet spot.

Not all constipation is the same, and different people have different symptoms, she added.

Bowel problems are less likely to be picked up than other problems because people wait 6-12 months out of fear and embarrassment.

You have to tune into your body.

We’re taking one more step towards abolishing the taboo surrounding poo.”

 

Read our patient information on constipation

MORE INFORMATION:

Read more posts...

Support Guts UK whilst shopping ’til you drop

If you often shop online, you can raise money for Guts UK whilst purchasing from your favourite retailers by using easyfundraising and Amazon Smile. “EVERY LITTLE HELPS” Our supporters to date have already raised over...

14th June 2019

Healthy Eating Week 2019

British Nutrition Foundation Healthy Eating Week is a dedicated week in the year (10-14th June 2019) to encourage organisations across the UK including workplaces, universities, and schools to focus on healthy eating and drinking, physical...

10th June 2019

Interview with dietitian: Chloe Adams

As part of Dietitians Week 2019, Guts UK interviewed supporter, former dietitian and current Policy Officer at the British Dietetic Association – Chloe Adams. Having seen the impact that digestive disorders can have on people’s...

7th June 2019

Celebrating Dietitians Week 2019

This week, Guts UK are supporting the British Association of Dietitians to build the general public’s knowledge and awareness surrounding ‘What Dietitians Do’ and how they can help you. This year’s emphasis aims to grow...

3rd June 2019

World Digestive Health Day 2019

Team Guts UK wish you a Happy World Digestive Health Day World Digestive Health Day is awaited with much excitement at Guts UK, as it sparks a global conversation surrounding gut health and diseases of...

29th May 2019