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CamilleRN
CamilleRN, Nurse (RN)
Category: Health
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Experience:  Experience: 30 yrs experience in ER, ICU, Neuro, OR, Chemo,Cardiology, Dermatology and MORE.
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I am a 58 y/o white male, 230#, 57 , who recently substantially

Customer Question

I am a 58 y/o white male, 230#, 5'7", who recently substantially changed my diet, eating significantly less meat, and very reduced fat and carbs. I am eating more rice and beans, other non-meat proteins, and try to eat more raw veggies and fruits; however I know that I am not eating enough fiber. Although I have reduced my coffee consumption from 6-8 cups/day to 1 cup, and I am drinking more water than ever, I know I'm still not drinking enough water. I have never been a heavy drinker (less than 6 oz per week), but have not had any alcohol since April 1st. I have lost 60 pounds since April 1st, although the first 50 pounds were lost in the first 8 weeks subsequent to the removal of 5 stones from my pancreas. All of my recent labs have reported that my liver/pancreatic enzymes have returned to normal levels. I had a very thorough physical a week ago, and the labs were all excellent.

I have a very sedentary job (a psychologist). And, although I clearly know better, I am not exercising at all, due to an extremely demanding work schedule and mostly, because of my lack of motivation. That motivation has also changed, and I have an exercise plan arranged.

Here's my presenting problem: I have an impacted bowel. Since my diet change, I have had BM's about every 3rd day, but I really haven't been constipated until 2 weeks ago. For the past two weeks or so, my stool has been much harder and elimination has become increasingly more difficult. I am presently on vacation and have spent the last two days driving. My last BM was Thurs evening. I am constipated, and I took a laxative (docusate sodium, 100mgX3) earlier this evening. After being unable to evacuate twice today, I digitally inspected my anus and the stool is very hard, obviously very wide, and I had no luck in trying to evacuate using a warm water enema. So my questions:

1. Could stool softeners loosen the already hard and impacted stool?
2. Might over-the-counter enema's help?
3. Having arrived at my destination late this evening, I have the time and capacity to walk/exercise. At this stage of the game, will walking or exercise help rectify the impaction?
4. I REALLY do not want to go to the ER to have the impaction manually removed until all other options are exhausted, however, I also do not want to jeopardize my health since I have not had a BM for more than 72 hours. Other than feeling mild anal pressure, I am not having any pains or discomfort.
5. What are your suggestions? I am perfectly glad to try over-the-counter remedies, exercise, meditation, etc., and I am not opposed to extremely cautious manual removal. BTW, I am a gay male, my partner of 26 years is with me, and I am very aware of the issues regarding finger tears of the anal wall, etc.

Thank you very much for your advise.

Dr. J.
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Health
Expert:  Dr. Su S replied 3 years ago.
Greetings,

This sounds like fecal impaction. When you are unable to pass now you will likely need some intervention. OTC enema can be taken to soften the stool. Then manual breaking of the stool by introducing gloved fingers can be done. Suppositories can tired to check whether it helps. Otherwise you should seek a medical help.

Any query, please feel free to ask.
It will be my privilege to assist you.
Regards.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Which type of OTC enema is best to soften stool? How long can I try to soften stool or remove manually before ER is necessary?
Expert:  Dr. Su S replied 3 years ago.
You have taken docusate in the evening. It will take some time to act, 10-12 hours. If it does not work you can put bisacodyl suppository or fleet oil enema.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Relist: Answer quality.
I have no further questions. As a medical clinician myself, I was given no more detail than I already knew or learned online. i have no further questions at this time.
Expert:  CamilleRN replied 3 years ago.
Welcome to JustAnswer Health...and thank you for your question. I am a verified Expert and am delighted to help you today. I am sorry you did not get the necessary information at the time you needed it. I realize you are ok now, but I have decided to answer you anyway.... to prevent this in the future.

1. Could stool softeners loosen the already hard and impacted stool? NO, once impacted the stool softner will not help, unfortunately.

2. Might over-the-counter enema's help? YES, buy 3 fleets enemas and use them over a few hours time. Try to lie on your left side to self administer, if you can... and stay there until you feel the urge. Don't strain.

3. Having arrived at my destination late this evening, I have the time and capacity to walk/exercise. At this stage of the game, will walking or exercise help rectify the impaction? YES Walking will help

4. I REALLY do not want to go to the ER to have the impaction manually removed until all other options are exhausted, however, I also do not want to jeopardize my health since I have not had a BM for more than 72 hours. Other than feeling mild anal pressure, I am not having any pains or discomfort. No need to go to the ER at this point ( No pain) What did you end up doing to resolve he problem?

5. What are your suggestions?

You may have something called Irritable bowel syndrome( IBS) IBS is a term given to a functional bowel disorder that can cause constipation, diarrhea , either or… or both.. Try this, drink least 8 glasses of water per day. Purchase Bio- K ( available in the cold case of health food stores) , which is an excellent probiotic that will not only help with regularity but also improve your immune system, also purchase Benefiber..( Over the counter) and take it per package directions. This combined with Bio K will promote regular, productive, well formed, easy to pass stools and help eliminate abdominal bloating and gas. This protocol will resolve your issues fully.

Please let me know if I can help further

Camille,RN

Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Thank you Camilla. I really wish the previous doctor had been as informative when i needed the help 3 days ago. Obviously, this onfo was a bit late this time around, but at least I have a little more faith in your system thanI have until now.
Expert:  CamilleRN replied 3 years ago.
Please think about this protocol for your every day life.... it will keep you from ever having to go through that again:-)

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CamilleRN
CamilleRN
Health Professional
4181 Satisfied Customers
Experience: 30 yrs experience in ER, ICU, Neuro, OR, Chemo,Cardiology, Dermatology and MORE.