Have you ever had that urge to eliminate waste but end up having a hard time moving your bowel? You strain and exert effort, but to no avail. Truth be told, constipation is never a pleasant thing.
Many individuals get constipated once in a while due to various reasons including stress, inadequate fiber in the diet, insufficient water intake, lack of exercise, or change in dietary intake. Typically, people are advised by doctors to eat more fruits and vegetables to add more bulk to their stool. There are also over-the-counter (OTC) medicines like laxatives to relieve the discomfort. Changes in lifestyle such as getting more exercise can also help relieve constipation.
However, when symptoms become more severe and frequent, it may already be chronic constipation you’re suffering from. Taking more laxatives can pose health risks because excessive stimulation of the digestive system can result in Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS). The best recourse then is to seek a doctor for medical advice. Now if you don’t have time to go to the clinic for consultation, don’t worry since you can go on an online call with a doctor and consult with him from the comfort of your own home.
Typically, doctors need more information about a patient to prescribe effective treatment. It is possible that when a person suffers from chronic constipation, there is an underlying medical condition behind it. In such cases, chronic constipation becomes secondary constipation. Metabolic disorders, neurologic disorders, diseases of the colon, or even use of narcotic drugs can cause chronic constipation.
To precisely arrive at the cause of chronic constipation, doctors may require different laboratory tests such as the following:
Scope Tests – This includes sigmoidoscopy, rigid proctoscopy, and colonoscopy. The doctor would try to trace bleeding, inflammation, and tumors that could be present in some areas of the colon. A biopsy can also be performed using the colonoscope.
Defecating Proctogram – An X-ray that determines how the sigmoid colon and rectum releases stool.
Anal and Abdominal Ultrasound – Sound waves are used to image the abdomen and anal sphincter muscles.
Anorectal Testing – This test can evaluate if the rectum and pelvic floor muscles do their jobs properly when passing stool.
Colonic Motility Test – One of the latest diagnostic tests for chronic constipation. An endoscope with a special balloon is inserted into the colon. Through the results of this test, doctors can decide if invasive procedures are needed for the patient.
Hydrogen Breath Test – Some cases of chronic constipation maybe caused by lactose or fructose intolerance. This test measures the amount of hydrogen gas in breath.
Indeed, advances in technology allow doctors to perform complex diagnostic tests for chronic constipation. Moreover, advanced technology now makes it possible for you to call a doctor online and consult with him without leaving your home as soon as symptoms become apparent. Because of that, doctors are more equipped to treat chronic constipation effectively.