Problem with Chronic constipation

Posted by bb03 @bb03, Feb 1 7:47pm

I have a history of hypothyroidism, severe endometriosis/treatment was a hysterectomy 17 years ago.I also have a hx of IBS. My thyroid hormone levels are stable. I eat like a rabbit(I poop like one too, LOL!!!!!!). I eat a large amount of fiber and drink almost every hour(nonalcholic).ONly prescription drugs I take are armour thyroid and my estrogen/prosterone troche. I make a coconut bread and I add psyllium husks,flax seed and chia seed to it. I eat it practically every am. I also eat a spinach salad for lunch daily with nuts and yogurt and eat a lean meat and veggie and more coconut bread at night. I do one cheat meal with a cheat dessert once per week. I am relatively active for my age of 60. I've been to a gastroenterologist and we have tried Linzess which didn't help at all. I take miralax, and a Super Cleanse tab one per day which has herbs to soften the stool and to stimulate the bowel and It barely works. I am at a loss. I have not tried Montegrity yet. I don't know if it will be helpful and the side effects scare me. I had a CT of my abdomen and it was ok, no obstructions. The gastroenterologist that I go to practically accused me of abusing laxatives. I would be impacted if I didnt use the miralax and the Super Cleanse. Diet/water and activity do not help. I had diarrhea from my late teens to the age of 36 when my intestines out of the blue just shut down completely. I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism, I was put on Synthroid but the constipation didn't go away. So if there is any gastroenterologist out there that can help me, please let me know.I feel defeated and worry about my health.

Hello @bb03 and welcome to Mayo Connect. Your post is a very familiar one to many of us who deal with chronic constipation on a regular basis. It sounds as if you are doing a lot of good things to deal with this problem. I have had three surgeries of the upper digestive tract and understand some of what you are experiencing.

Are you familiar with Pelvic Floor Therapy? This is a specific type of physical therapist who specializes in treating problems of incontinence, constipation and other elimination issues. A good pelvic floor therapist can offer suggestions on breathing techniques, the specific way of doing abdominal massage, and consumption of food, liquids, and other techniques.

You might feel that you've tried it all before, but I encourage you to ask for a referral and just see if it helps. Do you think it is worth a try?

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Thank you for the reply. You have gone through a lot more than me. I will research that therapy.

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Good afternoon @bb03. I have now spent 3 years trying to get the equipment working when it's supposed to. It is once again my major problem. I am going through some testing that requires adjustments in what goes in my stomach. Control of my bladder and colon is not on the docket for a couple more weeks. Once we get everything else sorted out….I will be able to select treatments that will learn how to keep those functions somewhere close to normal. We do pelvic floor work in my yoga class. Amazing how that helps. What else helps…….walking at least 2 miles a day. Not eating after 7:00 pm seems to help. I will consult with my MFR therapist to see if she can add more of the pelvic floor work.

Here is the other problem……..we have 3 old toilets and one septic tank out here in the boondocks. So…..we have to have blankets on the drain pipes and be very careful in the winter. We cannot have a garbage disposal without finding a place for a second septic tank.

My worst day ever was when I had managed to clog up all 3 toilets. So……I am also trying to research those options. I have made these body clearing issues part of my cognitive routines. Just call me "struggles".

I know you mentioned Miralax and a couple of others that work for you. Is it better to just do stool softeners at bedtime? Do you stick to the same routine every day? Thanks for your post and I look forward to and am grateful for some back and forth here.

May you be content and at ease.
Chris

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@artscaping

Good afternoon @bb03. I have now spent 3 years trying to get the equipment working when it's supposed to. It is once again my major problem. I am going through some testing that requires adjustments in what goes in my stomach. Control of my bladder and colon is not on the docket for a couple more weeks. Once we get everything else sorted out….I will be able to select treatments that will learn how to keep those functions somewhere close to normal. We do pelvic floor work in my yoga class. Amazing how that helps. What else helps…….walking at least 2 miles a day. Not eating after 7:00 pm seems to help. I will consult with my MFR therapist to see if she can add more of the pelvic floor work.

Here is the other problem……..we have 3 old toilets and one septic tank out here in the boondocks. So…..we have to have blankets on the drain pipes and be very careful in the winter. We cannot have a garbage disposal without finding a place for a second septic tank.

My worst day ever was when I had managed to clog up all 3 toilets. So……I am also trying to research those options. I have made these body clearing issues part of my cognitive routines. Just call me "struggles".

I know you mentioned Miralax and a couple of others that work for you. Is it better to just do stool softeners at bedtime? Do you stick to the same routine every day? Thanks for your post and I look forward to and am grateful for some back and forth here.

May you be content and at ease.
Chris

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I take two tablespoons of psyllium fibre (started with one tablespoon for six months) in s glass of water drunk down quickly before it gels, followed by another glass of plain water. Takes a couple of days to take effect but if taken daily, constipation is no longer a problem. Laxatives only promote dependency.

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I make a bread with psyllium, ground chia seed and ground flax seed and eat this every am. Does not help. I appreciate your suggestion. I tried Metamucil and it didn’t work either.

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For some people to much fiber can be a problem. I'm one of them. I have to stay on a low fiber diet and use laxatives. If I want fresh vegetables I have to use the "french" method. I shock them and put them in the fridge. You can google the method. I'm still trying to find the perfect combo of stool softeners and a nonstimulant laxative like miralax or magnesium. Working with a nutritionist is helpful. Hope this helps you.

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@bb03

I make a bread with psyllium, ground chia seed and ground flax seed and eat this every am. Does not help. I appreciate your suggestion. I tried Metamucil and it didn’t work either.

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I've been using Metamucil with Lax-a-Day with success, after months of uncontrolled diarrhea. I'm in the care of a GI, who is trying to stabilize me starting with 1 dose of Lax-aDay EVERY a.m. (I mix it with my coffee) and graduating from 1/2 tsp Metamusil every a.m. for one week, to 1 tsp every a.m. for one week, to 1 1/2 tsp every a.m. for one week, to 2 tsp every a.m. for one week, to 2 1/2 tsp every a.m. for one week, to finally 3 tsp every a.m. for one week.
It's very important to drink 2 litres of water daily, by my GI'S direction.
This is working! I'm presently at 2 tsp of Metamucil this week with the Lax-a-Day and water. I'm so excited that this may be a solution for me!

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These are all really interesting responses to the chronic diarrhea problem – my husband's Mayo team has not suggested any of these things for him (just Immodium and Benefiber to thicken things up). Have any posters had these problems as a result of surgery (i.e., Whipple) or has it been mainly due to gastric issues?

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