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Bouts of diarrhea, have regular BM, mustard colored, bad odor. What do you think is wrong?

Sorry this is gross, but I m not sure if I m worrying Unnecessarily. For the last two or so weeks I have been having a nasty bout of diarrhea . I normally have a regular BM maybe once or twice a month. What concerns me the most is my stools have been a very light tan almost mustard color with bits of small black specks throughout (like coffee grinds) and a horrific odor which can only be described as florida red tide or a stockpile of dead rotting fish. I started taking fish oil several months ago, but this is the first time anything like this has happened.
Asked On : Mon, 21 Jan 2013
Answers:  1 Views:  146
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General & Family Physician 's  Response
Hello and welcome.

Thank you for your query.

Irregular bowel movements could mean many things.

The first question I would like to ask you is if you have been having bouts of loose stool or diarrhea for a long time. As in on and off, without any other symptoms like fever or dehydration?

This is a very important question and if you feel this has lasted for more than the duration you have mentioned above you might have to discuss this in detail with your doctor.

If this is the first time this is happening and there is a change in the color, consistency and odor of your stools, this could be cause by an infection or even worms. What I would advise is a stool analysis.

This would make things more clear for your doctor and in turn help establish a diagnosis, which would ensure proper treatment and management of your condition.

Please also note, just for your information, diarrhea is also at times present in a person due to extreme stress, also call stress diarrhea, but it does not match the picture you have painted entirely.

As mentioned, the best option would be to get your stool analysed. This would be perfect to analyse the black specks you have mentioned above.

Black color stool is also called melena, and is usually a sign of upper gastro-intestinal tract bleeding, but we cannot say for sure if this is blood or not, without sending it to the laboratory. Either way, no matter what your condition, they are all easily treatable and nothing serious.

I hope I have helped in guiding you to the right path, I wish you good health.

Best wishes.
Answered: Mon, 21 Jan 2013
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