If you experience regular bouts of constipation, it’s time to see a doctor. Maninder Guram, MD, specializes in gastroenterology, so he’s the best kind of doctor to handle your digestive problems. Dr. Guram provides dietary guidance and medical assistance to get your system moving again at Texas Gastroenterology Associates in Tomball, Texas. Call or go online to schedule an appointment with Dr. Guram to find relief.
Constipation describes difficulty with bowel movements: You either can’t go, you have trouble going, or you don’t go as often as usual. The slower your stool moves in the large intestine, the more dried out it becomes, making it increasingly difficult to pass. A variety of lifestyle, environmental, and medical conditions contribute to constipation.
Other indications of constipation include:
Common causes of constipation include:
Sometimes constipation is a symptom of an underlying condition, such as:
Dr. Guram provides an assessment to determine the underlying cause of your constipation to formulate his treatment approach. He performs a physical exam and asks a series of questions to try and pinpoint the cause. He also may perform a digital rectal exam and fecal blood test to check for physical signs of disease.
Depending on the results of these tests, Dr. Guram may order a proctoscopy or colonoscopy to see inside your rectum and colon. An abdominal X-ray provides a picture of the organs inside the midsection if he suspects a problem there.
Based on the exam findings, Dr. Guram collaborates with you to design a treatment plan. For example, he may ask you if you’d prefer to take a wait-and-see approach or if you’d like to have further testing. He considers factors like your physical limitations and dietary preferences before making recommendations.
Treatment for constipation depends on the cause because constipation is a symptom, not a condition. Treating the underlying condition behind your constipation should improve your symptoms.
Dr. Guram starts with a conservative approach to relieving constipation and progresses from there. He may suggest lifestyle changes such as drinking more water, getting more dietary fiber, and exercising to see if those improve your situation first. To complement lifestyle changes, Dr. Guram may have you try over-the-counter laxatives for occasional constipation or prescription laxatives for chronic constipation.
If constipation has plagued you for more than two weeks, make an appointment with Dr. Guram to get things moving again.