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chronic diahrrea

  I went to a gastro doctor today for a recent but chronic problem with diahrrea. I am to take 3 stool samples for testing for the next 3 days. My primary care doctor did a stool testing (only 1) about a week ago and that came back negative and she said everything was fine. This new doctor asked if anyone in my family ever had colon cancer? My grandmoter did at 85yrs. old. If these stool samples come back OK he wants me in for a colonoscopy. I'm so scared. I have Hep-C but he said this is not why I have diarrhea. What else could it be? Seems like this all started when I was switched to a new pill called atenolol last month but, both doctors say this is not causing diarrhea either. Any suggestion??
Dear Bella,
Diarrhea is not a presenting symptom in hepatitis C viral infection. Diarrhea has rarely been reported in patients on Tenormin. On the other hand, there is a long list of disorders associated with chronic diarrhea. Chronic infections, malabsorption, inflammatory disorders (ulcerative colitis or Crohn's disease), collagenous or lymphocytic colitis, dietary factors (coffee, sorbitol and fructose containing foods) other medications, laxative abuse, food additives, lactose (dairy) intolerance, irritable bowel syndrome, celiac sprue, previous surgery (stomach, intestinal or gallbladder resection), endocrine disorders (diabetes, thyroid problems) and others. If stool tests to rule out infection are negative and conservative measures are not effective (increasing fiber in the diet and analyzing your diet to see if any particular foods are associated with your symptoms) a colonoscopy with biopsies is often performed to rule out diseases that affect the lining of the large intestine.
This response is being provided for general informational purposes only and should not be considered medical advice or consultation. Always check with your personal physician when you have a question pertaining to your health.
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