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Extreme constipation,frequent urination,muscle ache,potassium deficiency,klonopin,tonsillectomy

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Practicing since : 2002
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I was told that my extreme constipation, frequent urination, and occasional muscle aches (leaving me near immobile) was due to potassium deficiency, which made sense, my mother did, my brother has same condition. I started taking potassium supplements as well as a multivitamin and everything returned to normal, but now its starting again despite the potassium I take. Is it possible that the Klonopin and/or Paxil I'm now on could be interfering, though I was on these meds before the original outset of symptoms. I'm 32, Male. Other than a tonsillectomy, I've never had any serious health issues. Mental Health, OCD, Depression, some suicide attempts that included Tylenol PM - I was told in ER that I should never take acetaminophen again, due to possibility of liver damage.
Posted Wed, 2 May 2012 in Digestion and Bowels
Answered by Dr. Robert Galamaga 1 hour later
Hello and thanks for the query.

Your question is a good one and I will try to give you some good information and recommendations regarding what is going on.

I am sorry you are having to deal with this fluctuation in symptoms. A number of things can trigger constipation - including electrolyte disorders as you mentioned. An elevation of calcium level can also contribute to this so if you are by chance taking a calcium supplement I would hold it for a few days and observe for an improvement.

Diet of course plays a big role so adequate fluid hydration as well as fiber intake generally contribute to how your GI tract functions. While Paxil and klonopin may have a slight effect on bowel habits I don't think they contribute that much in the form of constipation.

I recommend you do the following - assess your daily fluid intake and make sure you consume at least 6 glasses of water per day. In addition I would like you to purchase a container of Metamucil powder and begin taking it once per day - one scoop in 8 ounces of water. The metamucil is a fantastic fiber supplement and will often help resolve minor constipation.

Try this for a couple of weeks and see how things go. If you still have issues by then I would be happy to reassess things with you.

Thanks again for the query. I hope this has served to be informative and helpful. If you have any additional concerns I would be happy to address them.


Dr. Galamaga
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