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Chronic Constipation

Eric Ibegbu, MD -  - Gastroenterologist

Atlantic Medical Group

Eric Ibegbu, MD

Gastroenterologist & Bariatric Medicine located in Kinston, NC & Jacksonville, NC

Chronic constipation can be an extremely uncomfortable and disruptive problem, making it difficult for people to deal with daily activities. Fortunately, Dr. Eric Ibegbu offers several treatment options designed to resolve the symptoms of chronic constipation. If you’re dealing with this issue, please contact Atlantic Medical Group to make an appointment in Jacksonville or Kinston, North Carolina.


Chronic Constipation Q & A

What causes chronic constipation?

Everyone deals with constipation at some time during their lives. However, chronic constipation is a more serious problem that often requires treatment from a doctor.

Chronic constipation can have several different causes. Some of the possible causes of this condition include:

  • Conditions that affect your hormones, such as pregnancy or diabetes
  • Problems with the muscles used during a bowel movement
  • Problems with the nerves that control bowel movements
  • Blockages in your colon
  • Lifestyle choices

Determining the cause of chronic constipation is an important part of the recovery process, as different types of constipation need different treatments.

How is the cause diagnosed?

Dr. Ibegbu begins the diagnosis of chronic constipation by performing a thorough physical exam and reviewing your medical history. He may also ask questions about your lifestyle and symptoms.

Depending on the results of this initial exam, Dr. Ibegbu may recommend other tests to look for specific causes of constipation. For example, if he suspects a blockage in your colon, you may need an imaging test. In other cases, he may simply recommend treatment and monitor the results.

Can it be treated?

Chronic constipation usually responds to the right treatment. However, the specific treatment you need will depend on the cause of your constipation. For example, if you have chronic constipation because of a blockage in your colon, you may need surgery to remove the blockage. If the blockage is cancerous, additional treatment may be necessary.

If your chronic constipation is related to hormonal, nerve, or muscle issues, you may benefit from taking medications, such as stimulants, osmotics, fiber supplements, and stool softeners.

How can patients deal with chronic constipation at home?

If chronic constipation is mild and not related to a serious illness, you may be able to deal with the condition on your own. Some lifestyle changes that may help with chronic constipation include:

  • Exercising regularly
  • Eating a high-fiber diet
  • Avoiding foods that aggravate your symptoms
  • Paying better attention to your urges to use the bathroom

Even if you’re taking medications, making these lifestyle changes may still help with your condition.

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