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Can green stools and pain in shoulder blades be signs of pancreatic cancer?

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Internal Medicine Specialist
Practicing since : 2003
Answered : 873 Questions
I started having green stool about 10 days ago. No diareaha. Stool floats. I also started having pain in the middle of my back between my shoulder blades. I'm 58 years old. I drink but not excessively except on rare occassions. I don't have any other symptoms to describe. From what I've read I'm scared to death that I have pancreatic cancer.
Posted Wed, 19 Feb 2014 in Digestion and Bowels
Answered by Dr. Vaddadi Suresh 1 hour later
Brief Answer: There is nothing to fear about your symptoms Detailed Answer: Hi, There is nothing to fear about your symptoms. Essentially, our stool at the site of formation, is green in colour. As it slides down the intestines very slowly, bacterial flora converts it to brown. Green stools just indicate that your gut is hyperactive, not giving enough time for conversion. Sometimes it may happen when you use antibiotics that inadvertently eradicate essential bacterial flora in the gut. Green stool is also seen in infections of the gut that provoke excess bile. In an alcoholic, a heavy binge can cause similar effect as that of an antibiotic, which can also increase gut peristalsis, resulting in green colored stool. To clear your doubt, pancreatic cancer patients can not excrete bile into their stools, and hence often their stools are pale white or clay colored. Moreover, they will have severe jaundice. So, I suggest you to rest your gut, keep away from alcohol for some time, take a probiotic capsule (eg; lactobacillus) and see the response. If you see no difference in a week, you may consult a gastroenterologist. Hope i have answered you fine. Please get back to post if you have any clarifications to be made.
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Follow-up: Can green stools and pain in shoulder blades be signs of pancreatic cancer? 4 hours later
So what would be the cause of this don't pain in my upper back? Whats causing my upper back pain?
Answered by Dr. Vaddadi Suresh 7 hours later
Brief Answer: Pancreatitis is a possibility in alcoholics Detailed Answer: hi, sorry for late reply. The pain in the mid back could be related to alcohol effects on your gut or pancreas. It may as well be an unrelated issue like muscle spasm etc. I advice you to go for ultrasound abdomen after sometime to make sure your pancreas is alright (Pancreatitis is a possibility in alcoholics) Alternatively, you should stop alcohol and start some antacids like omeprazole or whatever antacid prescribed by your doctor. I CLARIFY THAT PANCREATITIS IS NOT THE SAME AS PANCREATIC CANCER. DO NOT PANIC. I hope you will get well soon. All the best.
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