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Unsure of the Cause of Frequent Small Bowel Movements
To make a very long story short, I am a chronic pain patient from a back injury.  I spent at least 5 years on heavy doses of narcotics, Morphine specifically.  I had a spinal cord stimulator placed in the fall of 07, which has been a gift from God as far as pain control.  I reduced the dosage of morphine to 1/10th of what I had been taking, as well as eliminated Lyrica completely.  For the past 6 months or so, I am having very frequent stools, however they are very very small.  Each time I visit the bathroom, I pass a little piece of stool.  On different occasions, I experience somewhat pasty or soft stools that are especially bothersome as one, I do not feel them really and often do not know until I use the bathroom and then they are extrememly difficult to get "clean".   It is what I called smearing when taking care of elderly hospitalized patients.   Other times they are formed and pass with little cleanup necessary. However, it does make for a sore bottom, not to mention a complete nuisance.  I do pass what I would call a normal stool and couple of times a week, but continue to pass these very small pieces in between.   I am confused as to the actual cause, thus knowing how to treat it.  I also might add, during the years of high narcotic doses, I did daily take Senna for constipation from the narcotics.  I have mentioned this to both my primary care doctor and my pain specialist without much of a response or suggestions.  I have recently been screened for colorectal cancer, and that was negative.
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You may want to try to add some fiber to your diet to see if 'bulking' up the fecal material may be of help - and make sure to add enough fluids to offset the effects of the fiber. One of the 'triggers' to let you know that you need to go the bathroom is the stretching of the colon in reponse to the bulk of the fecal material. Lacking the signal with soft pasty stools can mean a very slow rate of passage and a smeary result.
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