Size of poop

Posted by mikayla68 @mikayla68, Jan 7 7:56am

When I was a child, I was constipated. It was hard to pass a poo, the poos were the small hard pebbly kind. As an adult (I'm in my late 60s) my poops tend to form too wide. It's either the first poop of the day, or the first part of the first poop. My drs have always labeled this as constipation – but I go poop every single day so it seems like the wrong diagnosis. I'd poop even if I didn't use Citrucel or Colace, which I do. And you won't be surprised to learn that I've had hemorrhoids and 2 surgeries for fissures.

To make this more complicated, I had the bad luck to get CDiff a few years ago which morphed into IBS Mixed – I've found that drs pretty much leave it up to patients to determine what kind of IBS, but I think I'm mixed, but maybe it's actually D? Anyway, I now eat low FODMAP which is very effective, but means I can't have certain things like prunes or Metamucil. Oh, and most GIs I've seen are glad I'm eating low FODMAP and just don't care if I call my condition IBS-D or IBS-M or even IBS-C. Oh and I had a rare bad reaction to Miralax, so I can't use that.

So I'm just wondering if anybody would recommend I try anything to help with this poo-size issue. I'm thinking about getting ground flax seed, I think that might be my next experiment. If I overdo the stool softeners or counting my fiber intake or Citrucel, then I poo and poo and poo – it almost never becomes watery, but it causes many bad mornings and sometimes can't leave the house until noon. I'm so sick of myself! I'm in my golden years and I just want to enjoy them!

Thanks.

Interested in more discussions like this? Go to the Digestive Health Support Group.

@astaingegerdm

@mikayla68
If your bowel movements are too wide it is an indication that you are constipated. Your large intestine has stretched out over the years to handle all the stool. You can have several bowel movements a day and still be constipated.
I also think you should see a gastroenterologist to help you find something you can use daily and something you can tolerate.
You can get back to normal- it may take some time.
I also have had to deal with it- still working on finding the magic combination!

Jump to this post

I agree and have always been surprised when a GI never said this. Yes, of course it has stretched out. But I'm telling you that my "normal" bowel movements have not been small or just token bits but considerable well-sized poops, it's just the first part of the first one. Yes, it's like walking a tightrope! So far so good with the ground flaxseed, I'm up to 3 tbsps starting today and just a small amount of Citrucel. My mornings are no longer lost. I've seen many GIs over the years, for sure. I cannot imagine at my age and after so many years that my intestines could go back to the right size. But I guess ya never know. I jsut reread my post and don't know why I didn't mention my fairly-recent fissure surgery … I guess I was just looking for specific advice. Anyway, part of the surgery was Botox and I think it has started to work (I was told it can take a few weeks) which means there's a bigger opening for stools to pass. Thanks so much for commenting!

REPLY
@debkl

Chia seeds have a much higher fiber content than flax: You can make some delicious puddings with thrm, add small amounts to oatmeal, yogurts, smoothies, soup. They need to soak a short time to swell up.

Sweet potatoes, avocado, black beans, chick peas, brown rice, barley, wheatberries…all have soluble fiber.

Add beans slowly to meals and try Beano to prevent gas.

Full Plate Living, which focuses on getting soluble fiber, is on social media and has a PhD nutritionist who answers questions.

Jump to this post

I've always been told insoluble fiber is the important kind when it comes to pooping. No? I've already started the ground flaxseed so I'm going to stick with that for at least a while – but I apprciate the info about chia seeds. What are the benefits of soluble fiber? I'll definitely check out Full Plate Living – thanks for commenting!

REPLY

400-600 mg of Mag Citrate daily has been a game changer for me. Not gassy, not bloated, just regular and non-hard stool. Good luck. So frustrating having to spend so much time pooping – and thinking about pooping!

REPLY
@mikayla68

I agree and have always been surprised when a GI never said this. Yes, of course it has stretched out. But I'm telling you that my "normal" bowel movements have not been small or just token bits but considerable well-sized poops, it's just the first part of the first one. Yes, it's like walking a tightrope! So far so good with the ground flaxseed, I'm up to 3 tbsps starting today and just a small amount of Citrucel. My mornings are no longer lost. I've seen many GIs over the years, for sure. I cannot imagine at my age and after so many years that my intestines could go back to the right size. But I guess ya never know. I jsut reread my post and don't know why I didn't mention my fairly-recent fissure surgery … I guess I was just looking for specific advice. Anyway, part of the surgery was Botox and I think it has started to work (I was told it can take a few weeks) which means there's a bigger opening for stools to pass. Thanks so much for commenting!

Jump to this post

@mikayla68
I don’t tolerate high fiber either- and so many doctors have tried to force me to try it again. Makes me sick. Many don’t understand.
You may be on the right path now if the flaxseed works plus the fissure surgery you had.
Do you think using a glycerin suppository first thing in the am would make the mornings easier?

REPLY

Sorry you’re suffering so much. Have you ever worked with a dietitian or a naturopathic provider? I’m thinking outside the box. I presume you’re Medicare age and have been thru the wringer with your gut.

REPLY
@astaingegerdm

@mikayla68
I don’t tolerate high fiber either- and so many doctors have tried to force me to try it again. Makes me sick. Many don’t understand.
You may be on the right path now if the flaxseed works plus the fissure surgery you had.
Do you think using a glycerin suppository first thing in the am would make the mornings easier?

Jump to this post

Hi nice to hear from you again! It helps to hear that you can't do high fiber either.
I have glycerin suppositories ready to go if I need one, but they make me feel pretty sick for an hour or two so I'm avoiding them. Once or twice I used a Fleet saline enema post surgery to avoid straining, which I'm supposed to not do. It's hurting tonight and am kinda mad at myself cuz I think I strained this afternoon – I find it's hard to know exactly what to do, and my sensations in that area tend to be confused, like I can't reliably know what I'm feeling, probably from that old surgery. Thanks again.

REPLY
@jenatsky

Sorry you’re suffering so much. Have you ever worked with a dietitian or a naturopathic provider? I’m thinking outside the box. I presume you’re Medicare age and have been thru the wringer with your gut.

Jump to this post

Hi and thanks for commenting. I worked with a dietician to work my way through low FODMAP eating. It's a complex way of eating and you need to go through the process of elimination, so my answer is yes. I also did the Nerva app – a system of hypnotic relaxation for the gut and IBS. And yes, I've been thru the wringer with my gut, thanks for recognizing that! This is corny, but sometimes I talk to it and apologize.

REPLY

I did find that there is a speciality in GI medicine under the heading naturopathic providers. I don’t know where you reside but if you search I bet you can find an MD or DO who is also trained in naturopathic medicine. And also look into large teaching hospitals with Alternative Medicine programs where you might find this too. Good luck but I earn out of suggestions.

REPLY
@mikayla68

I've always been told insoluble fiber is the important kind when it comes to pooping. No? I've already started the ground flaxseed so I'm going to stick with that for at least a while – but I apprciate the info about chia seeds. What are the benefits of soluble fiber? I'll definitely check out Full Plate Living – thanks for commenting!

Jump to this post

Both are good. Both provide bulk and prebiotics. Soluble makes stool softer so it's easier to pass.

REPLY
@evar

400-600 mg of Mag Citrate daily has been a game changer for me. Not gassy, not bloated, just regular and non-hard stool. Good luck. So frustrating having to spend so much time pooping – and thinking about pooping!

Jump to this post

Thanks. I've been trying to find the right dose of mag citrate that doesn't result in diarrhea.

REPLY
Please sign in or register to post a reply.