I know several of us struggle with constipation. I have been having okay results since June with Miralax and Colace. A few weeks ago I began having what looks to be blood in the stool. I told my onc right away. She said do not worry. It is probably from a blood vessel bursting. Well, I tried not to worry, but it did not work! Could the Miralax be the trouble? Thanks, Marie
Wow .. don't worry about it!! What is your MD thinking?! I think if the blood is "red" it is less serious than if it's "black, tarry" colored. I have not had any trouble with Miralax. I am a Dulcolax fan.
Red, so far. Not all the time, but it has happened several times. I have an appointment with my internal med doc Nov. 20th. I hope I can just hold out til then. Hopefully it will stop. I did read the warning on the miralax. They said stop taking it and tell your doc. I did tell her and she did not tell me to stop. If I stop I'll be heading for an obstuction. This disease is so disgusting in so many ways............................Marie
I used Miralax quite a bit and did not have any problems, it did the job for me. Bright Red blood would be from the lower GI tract or rectum where as dark, black or tarry looking, would be from the upper GI which would most likely be a worse case. I am sorry you have to deal with this but glad you going to see your internest. Kerry
I was put on the Colace after sugery. My surgery was in Feb. this year I quit taking the Colace at end of May,at the end of Aug. I started to have trouble with constipation by mid september I was having problems with blood and ribbon shaped stool. Call my onc, they suggested I go back on Colace, and I need to call gastroenologist (sp). for possible colonoscopy. I have a consult tomorrow. My movements are still 4 to 5 days apart, but there was no blood the last time. I have not tried the Miralax, I also have a surgical hernia with pain around belly button. Not sure if my problems are obstruction related or if my problems could be related to my surgery.
Do you bleed each time you go? My blood is also bright red. Are your movements pretty normal as far as appearance and timing. Sorry for the blunt descriptions you are right this disease is disgusting in a lot of ways. I am sorry you are dealing with this.
Not every time, but enough to scare me. Maybe I should add more colace. I have had trouble all my life, but the resection and rectal tumor removal did not help!! Thank you all for your help. I apologize for the ugly topic! Marie
Marie it is not an ugly topic.. it is a fact of life for those of us who have had resections or chemo does it.... I used to take colace everyday but about 2 months I started eating 100% bran cereal everyday and the difference is night and day.. I used to bleed due to the fact from being constipated it causes hemmoroids (hemorrhoids) inside so when it was recommended to me the Kellogs bran I figured hey I will try... It has worked miracles for me and if I skip one day i see the difference., just giving my .02 Ronni
Marie, first off DO NOT apologize. Ovca has some unpleasant and downright ugly issues and this is the place we should discuss them. I know I have been told several times by caretakers not to post things that were to graphic because it upsets them. This is the place to talk about all of that stuff and if some don't like the reality of ovca than they need to go to tinkerbell land where they don't have to think about it.
Miralax is the mildest and most effective remedy we have. It has no fiber and doesn't leave you with the awful gassy, bloating feeling. Do you have a GP or just your onc and internist? Usually a GP can see you sooner. Did you ask your internist to put you on a call list if they have a cancellation? You should if you haven't.
I tried every natural thing I could think of but after this last hospital trip for obstruction I started the miralax. I find that I can only use it for 3 days than I take 2 days off and than start again. I won't go into why I started this pattern suffice it to say it is enough. Until this stupid cancer I thought it was perfectly normal to go twice a month. Of course I had IBS so that pretty much took care of that problem.
I still do Dannon's Activia every morning and Ronni's cereal suggestion is good too. I eat Fiber One because it has 51% of your daily fiber needs (has a good flavor also, unlike some high fiber cereals) but not near as often as I should. Honestly, since I eat mostly fruit you'd think I wouldn't have a problem but....
If you find yourself going and it is like baby poop than you are using it to often and maybe you could cut back. How often do you use it? Once a day, twice?
Thank you for bringing this up. Bowel obstruction is the dirty little secret of OvCa and if you all have not read TC's HealthPage about it you DEFINITELY should.
Hope everything comes out alright!! (Giggle, snicker, giggle, laugh) No, not funny, but do you remember Jr High and having to ask to be excused from class.
I am going to call Dr. Bauer, or maybe I will get scared and put it off another day. My mom's bowel obstruction was what ended up taking her life. Until Dr B can see me I will read Tc's page and try some (or all!!!) of the above suggestions. I will be known as p**pymarie instead of marie3b. I am so tired, but can't rest. I keep worrying about my poor belly. Marie
Oh the joys of managing our constipation! I have found it to be one of my greatests challenges. I'm not sure how much blood you are having, but I had the same experience several months ago even though I felt I had the constipation somewhat under control. My nurse said it was most likely a hemorrhoid and had me use Preparation H suppositories. They did the trick and I have not had the problem since. There are many great suggestions on here and I hope one works for you! Take care.
Had you been "straining" when you saw the blood? And, was it on the paper or in the stool itself? If it's on the paper it's probably a little tear, or you could have a little fissure, or Hemorrhoids or, as the Dr. said , a little burst vessel..If it's "in" the stool, it is probably happening a little further up in the digestive tract.
I'm somewhat of an expert in constipation unfortunately , having it all my life. I had a hemorroidectomy in my early 30s.. All this doesn't mean you should ignore it though. . I know there are probably limitations to what meds you can take, but I swear by Metamucil every day so you may also ask about that.
So many meds contribute to the problem too.. even for me.. such as Calcium, cholesterol meds, and I absolutely hate drinking water..
I know it's scary ... def. mention to Dr. but try not to worry... (yeah right) .
Jan is right, you have nothing to apologize about. The topic isn't ugly, it is the cancer that is ugly.
I do not have anything else to add to what the others have told you, so I hope that one of the suggestions will work. (Just so you know, I would be scared too!)
I can't add much more than everyone has said either, but I do take Miralax everyday until such time as I get regular again. When I had bleeding and it was bright red, it was from hemmerrhoids. I did have a colonoscopy to check on the bleeding because I was filling up the toilet bowl and I was scared about it, but it did turn out to be internal hemmerrhoids. I am wondering why your doctor wouldn't mention that. Are you still bleeding? I have not had blood in my stool since. Let us know!
Just one thought to add ... eating alot of fiber can constipate you UNLESS you drink LOTS of liquid (juice/water). I have witnessed, first hand, the oncology nurses where I used to work instructing patients to cut back on the fiber to ease their constipation. Just something to think about ... Judy
Oh, I feel so irresponsible now Judy. I forgot about the liquids part. Thank you for the reminder. You r right. You HAVE to drink lots of water, iced tea or juices if you eat a lot of fiber. Sodas don't really count as liquids because they also have a dehydrating effect. If you eat of alot of juicy fruits and lettuce though that also helps your liquid intake. Lettuce is 95% water and my onc says people often forget to include those kinds of things in their "liquid" intake if they are big fruit and vegetable eaters.
My GP years ago said it was like beavers building dams. If they build it right under a man made dam, it will wash everything downstream, (bad for the beaver), but if a beaver builds his dam where there is less water than stuff just builds up on the dam blocking it up even more (good for the beaver, bad for us).
For those of you that hate water & don't want expensive bottled water, try this. Take some grapes (the kind with flavor like concords), blueberries, peaches, mangos, kiwis, blackberries, raspberries, strawberries, pineapples, etc., smash down with potato masher or liquefy in blender (not ones with seeds like grapes or it will be bitter), strain berries with seeds through a cheesecloth (not at all hard to do) and freeze the juice in a shallow tupperware container, or silicon container for freezer's. When it freezes, break it up in small pieces and put it in freezer bags. When you grab that bottle of water or the filtered stuff off of your refrigerator, get a few chunks of your favorite flavor or flavors and add it to you water. Instant fancy water with no fake flavors or preservatives and actual flavor from the fruit instead of "real fruit flavor". What does that mean? They found a way to use chemicals that taste the same as a berry? YUCK!!!
Okay, that is my Martha Stewart moment for the day, but you would be surprised how much it helps your water intake.
Judy thank you again for the reminder. I was giving very dangerous advice. I am glad there are so many of us so that our pool of knowledge really amounts to something when we combine it.
I agree with all the others - let's agree not to apologize for talking about the realities of our physical condition. I have the two extremes right now - when the chemo side effects are bad, I have diarrhea and then I go right back to being constipated. I found that prune juice works well for me. So well, in fact, that I have to be very vigilant about staying close to the toilet when it moves through me! I feel like one of the lucky ones- I love water, can't get enough of it, and the metamucil type fixes really don't work well for me.
Good luck to you and I wish you peace, peace, peace.
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