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Diagnosed with extra long colon, feel sluggish and bloated all the time. Measures to avoid constipation?

Apr 2013
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Answered by

General Surgeon
Practicing since : 2008
Answered : 9331 Questions
I only empty my bowels once a week, sometimes every 10 days. I had a barium enema a few years back and all was clear. I also had to swallow some capsules and go back the next day to see where the capsules were on the x-ray. The capsules took 6 days to move through my colon. The dr said I had an extra long colon. Now this is becoming a problem for me. I feel slugish and bloated all the time. I eat plenty of fibre. Fresh fruit and drink what I consider enough water. What else can I do to make me go the toilet more frequently?
Also I had a tummy bug last week. When I was sick, food that I sicked up was from 3 nights before? this is why I am concerned.
Posted Wed, 22 May 2013 in Digestion and Bowels
Answered by Dr. Ivan R. Rommstein 33 minutes later
Hi and welcome to XXXXXXX
First,this is definitely significant constipation and there are 2 possible reasons of it. First one is colon motility disorder which can be caused by neurologic,methabolic, hormonal or electrolytes abnormalities. So to rule this out you should do detailed blood work and check all these parameters.
Secondly, it can be resulting from colon obstruction due to stenosis, tumour, inflammatory bowel disease or some other lesions. You should do colonoscopy to rule this out because capsules and barium enema arent so specific.
The third option is inadequate diet, you should take more fruit,vegetables especially bean and broccoli and take lot of fluids including sweet beverages.
Coffeine may help too. ALso you should take magnesium supplements because magnesium speed up bowel movements.
If you are sure that there was vomiting of food from 3 days before than there can be high obstruction in duodenum or small intestines. It can be evaluated by gastroscopy and CT scan.
Bowel can be abnormaly long,but this is maximally 40-50cm so it cant cause such long food transition. The last solution is surgical procedure which can fixate and reduce bowel length.
WIsh you good health. If you have any question I ll be glad to help.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Diagnosed with extra long colon, feel sluggish and bloated all the time. Measures to avoid constipation? 17 hours later

Today I decided to drink a lot of prune juice as I feel very blocked up. So good news I ended up on the loo and had very bad belly ache. But I did pass some stools, however the stools all floated and had white specs on it. What does this mean.

Thank you for your quick reply before and I am sorry this is an embarresing subject for me.

Thanks again
Answered by Dr. Ivan R. Rommstein 1 hour later
Hi again. There is nothing to be embarresed for. This is common problem and many people experience the same. I cant say what exactly this white specs means. It can be undigested food or sign of parasite infection. So ask your doctor for doing stool examination under the microscope where infectious agents can be seen.
Sweet and fruit beverages can be helpful so try to find one that makes you feel better. Also try to have breakfast every day as it will stabilize digestion and should speed up bowel movements.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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