Digestive Disorders / Gastroenterology Expert Forum
6 year old daughter
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6 year old daughter

My daughter is 6 yrs old and has basically always been constipated. Dr's have told me not to worry about it this whole time. About 5-6 weeks ago she became really constipated and it wasn't letting up at all, so I took her to her dr. She told me that since she has been constipated most of her life, that she thinks her bowels are stretched and she needs to be on miralax for a yr and to do 3 enemas on her and it will straighten everything out. So a week after starting it, I was still concerned that she had only had a couple, sm bowel movements. So the dr ordered an x-ray and said she was backed up in her sm bowel and rectum. So she gave my daughter magnesium citrate to take for 3 days (80ml ea. day). After finishing that, a couple days later, she started throwing up and crying that her stomach hurt so bad and I took her back. They did another x-ray and said she still had a lot in her rectum. So the dr gave me 3 more enemas to give her. I am concerned it has taken over 2 weeks to clear her system of all the stool. Is this no big deal and is this being on miralax everyday for a yr going to fix this? The dr tells me this is a common problem, but I can't see it being normal for a child to be constipated for 6 yrs to begin with! A friend who works in another dept at the hospital here talked to the GI dr here (they don't deal with ped patients) and he said I should have her checked for Hirschsprung's disease. Is this even likely? She has most of the symptoms I have read about online and is short for her age. I would appreciate any help or what direction I should go or if this is likely no big deal??? I hate seeing her hurt like she does and lately she has just been so tired. I am very concerned and worried about her! Thank you for your time.
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There can be several cause for the chronic constipation - including Hirschprung's disease, lead poisoning, milk intolerance, and thyroid disorders.

Further testing can include blood tests looking at the metabolic panel, thyroid disease, calcium, and lead levels.  More tests like colonic transit studies and anorectal manometry can be considered to evaluate for any motility disorders as well as Hirschprung's disease.

You can consider a referral to a pediatric GI physician to discuss these options.

Followup with your personal physician is essential.

This answer is not intended as and does not substitute for medical advice - the information presented is for patient education only. Please see your personal physician for further evaluation of your individual case.

Kevin, M.D.
http://www.straightfromthedoc.com
7 Comments
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a person who suffers from underactive thyroid is often constipated.Have you checked her thyroid??
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Her thyroid has never been checked. She has never had blood taken for anything. The dr here tells me this is normal and once this all gets out and keep her on miralax for a yr and she will be fine. She is a healthy eater and the dr even agrees it's not her diet. But she's being seen by a general dr and not a GI of any sort because the dr says this is normal. I voiced my concern, but guess it didn't matter.
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I also suggest she get her thyroid checked.TAKE HER TO A DIFFERENT DOCTOR! Other things to look for are cold hands and feet, dry skin and sores,vomiting, nausea, low body temperature, constant complaining about muscle aches and pains.  Please see my earlier thread GET YOUR THYROID CHECKED.
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are you in Japan,are you the lady with a little boy who just wants to grab a blanket and go to sleep in the daytime??
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Yes, he is doing much better. I found out he had giardia because he was refluxing again and putting his hands in his mouth because it hurt. I guess the tiredness was going along with it because once she started him on previcid, he was fine. At least his dr wanted to run every test in the book before she would say that's all it was. But she has moved back to the states, so I can't take my daghter to see her!!My daughter has had this problem her whole life, but the dr's in NC always told me it was normal and so I never thought anything of it until now all these problems that have come with it. I tell you, I am ready to go back to the states because so much has happened here. I am having my own health problems! Guess it's just a coincedence that it's happened while we are here, but I have had all I can take! I am just hoping my other daughter stays healthy:) She has seasonal allergies that have been worse being here, but is fine with her medicine!
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you may want to keep in mind when your daughter goes for her thyroid test-Japan is a land of seaweed,sea urchin,fish,shrimp,clams,crabs,octopus,iodine is everywhere,it seeps into the soil where vegetables are grown,it is in the air they breathe and the water they drink,so hypothryroidism should be rare .
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I have had severe constipation my whole life. Ive been checked for just about every disorder/syndrome my doctor can think of and still, no results. My parents have said they noticed it more when i was about 6 also. Im 17 now and am always in constant pain. I can't have a bowel movement without strong laxitives. Please dont believe your doctor when they say its normal, my parents believed that too and now i am suffering for it. I cant do anything. I'm still trying to figure out what it is and if i figure it out i will let you know. If you have any questions for me please email me at ***@****. Im sorry your daughter is going through this.
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