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Segmental ulcerative colitis and constipation

Q: I have been suffering from segmental ulcerative colitis for the past 10 years and have also been treated from it. I also suffer from acute constipation problem which prevents me from a regular bowel discharge for 2-3 days at a stretch. Could this problem be related to the colitis problem? Please help.

A:Constipation is a very common problem. Some people may go to the toilet 2-3 times a day, whilst others may not go for a week or more. Constipation is not a usual problem with active colitis. In active colitis there is diarrhoea with blood and mucus. On settling, patients are usually left with their normal bowel habit. I wonder whether the diagnosis in your case was an irritable bowel syndrome rather than segmental colitis - a term that is sometimes used rather loosely. I would suggest that you have plenty of fibre in your diet along with adequate hydration with water. However, at the age of 47 years, if the change in bowel habit has been recent, you should consult a doctor.

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