Newbie! Black bits in stool! Opinions, pls!

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Sugarloaf
New Member


Date Joined Jan 2006
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 1/2/2006 2:16 PM (GMT -7)   

Hi, new here and was looking for some opinions. The post will be a bit long, so don't nod off nono :-)

I'm 28 and have had IBS since I was 15. On the whole, it has never really been a debilitating problem; just one-off bouts of "spastic colon" every so often. In the last couple of years I would say the bouts had been increasing slightly but nothing that required treatment. Anyway, last August I had a terrible time with 5 nasty bouts within the month (which is a lot for me). I was recommended Aloe Vera juice and Acidophilus and they have worked brilliantly in settling things down. I had one mild episode within 4 weeks of taking it but since then (over 2 months later) my bowels have been moving beautifully and regularly tongue

Now to my problem - in Oct after having a BM I noticed some blood on the stool. Initially I wasn't too worried. I'd had similar 6yrs previous; after passing a hard stool I felt a tear and for the subsequent 3/4 months experienced intermittent blood on the stool. A fissure, I assumed, and thanks to the aid of a mirror and a sacrifice of dignity I also diagnosed myself with a small internal hemmie. Since then, after having a BM my anus can often tend to feel a bit sore and irritated. So when this latest bit of blood happened it didn't really bother me but I still kept a watchful eye on my stool. I seemed to notice blood would show up on the outside of the stool when they were particularly hard but not on the soft ones. I did my internal hemmie check and at least *one* was definitely present (a little bigger than the last time) and just to be extra vigilant, I stuck on the rubber gloves to do more of an in-depth examination after every BM to just make sure that no blood was mixed in with the stool - it wasn't.

I went for a quick check up with my doc and she said it def sounded like an internal hemmie and that it was possibly aggravated by my bouts of IBS, and to carry on with the Acidophilus and Aloe Vera. I continued to keep thoroughly checking my stools, though, just to stay on the safe side. The smearings of blood eventually reduced and after a few more BM's there was no more blood at all. So on Dec 15th, after having a BM, I decided this would be the last time I donned the gloves and dug deep. There was no blood, but what I suddenly noticed was tons and tons of tiny black bits. Like little black flecks confused My instant thought was "OMG! Is this blood?" You think of the words "stool" and "black" and you obviously think blood. The stool itself wasn't black but contained loads of these little black bits. The following night I had another BM and part of the stool contained black bits while the rest was fresher waste that didn't contain any.

Well, I was suddenly worried by this. All the previous times I'd done a poop check I hadn't noticed these black bits! Where they new or had they been there before but b/c I was so intent on searching for blood I didn't notice them? Where they associated with the initial blood I had seen? After a bit of panic, it suddenly occurred to me that the day before the black specky poop I'd had a big plate of broccoli - and in fact the little specks of black did look a bit like munched up broccoli. Then a couple of days later, I had a bolognese sauce which I noticed contained many little specks of parsley and basil which resembled the specks in my poop only they were dark green as opposed to black. A couple of days later when I had my BM, I noticed there were some specks again (not as many as last time) and I noticed that they did appear to be some kind of substance - not black stained bits of poop but something in the stool. I wondered if it could be the associated with parsley and basil (similar to the broccoli). Thanks to a little experiment I discovered that dark green foodstuff does seem to turn black when mixed with poop and that the little sprigs of parsley broke up exactly the same way when prodded w/ a toothpick as the unidentified poopy black bits.

So, since then, some BM's have had some flecks, some have been totally clear. But my last three BM's have contained some bigger black bits... but they ARE actually a substance. They feel like little bits of corn and brake up as if they are some kind of skin. They look a bit like a quarter of a small blueberry. I've eaten sprouts earlier this week but I don't think I would still be pooping them out today. My actual stool color is normal.

So... has anyone at all ever noticed similar? Am I the only one to do in-depth dump checks? Am I obsessing about this? Obviously, with never previously rummaging through my crap I don't know what the heck is in there or how some foods look when they've been through the system so this may be nothing new but I'm obsessing about it b/c I've just noticed it. Or, do these black bits sound odd? Feedback totally appreciated.

 

Thanks.


Post Edited (Sugarloaf) : 1/2/2006 1:23:06 PM (GMT-7)


bunnybabe
Regular Member


Date Joined Sep 2005
Total Posts : 263
   Posted 1/2/2006 5:12 PM (GMT -7)   
hey, do the specks look like coffee grounds? (that is often associated with Celiac, wheat/gluten allergy)
i obsess over the toilet too--
the larger bits, i am not farmiliar with--i have pooped black a lot, no one seems to know why, but mine is usually all black or large portion black. have you had any upper scopes done?
take care of yourself, and let your doctor know what is going on with you.
--bunny
what would you attempt to do if you knew you could not fail?


dbab
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jan 2004
Total Posts : 4151
   Posted 1/2/2006 6:27 PM (GMT -7)   
I occasionally get the coffee ground specks as well. I mentioned it to my doctor but he told me that it could just be undigested food. Now I am curious about the celiac. I have UC but the blood associated with that is a redder color since the blood is lower in the GI tract. I think I will mention it to him again and do some research. I don't get it often but every once in a while will notice it.
Hugs, Des
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7Lil
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Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 3269
   Posted 1/2/2006 8:28 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi Sugarloaf, welcome to HealingWell! :-)
I think the little black bits aren't anything to worry about. Probably just food that hasn't been digested properly. HOWEVER, if it is bothering you that much you should tell your doctor. Maybe they could do some sort of stool test.
But for the most part (and using good judgement) I think the only time to worry is if your entire BM is black or there is a lot of blood in the toilet.
Good luck and please keep posting with updates and/or questions.
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blondie15
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2005
Total Posts : 185
   Posted 1/3/2006 5:45 PM (GMT -7)   
Hey! Im 15 and have had irritable bowel all my life, so I def know how you feel haha!! I agree, its probably just undigested food. Like I know if I drink red Koolade or red peppers, etc., they can sometimes dye my poop a reddish tinge.

Sarita
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2005
Total Posts : 2486
   Posted 1/3/2006 6:10 PM (GMT -7)   
I think the time when you need to start worrying about the coffee-ground effect is when it shows up in your vomit.  Then it could point to internal bleeding.  But if you only notice the grounds after you eat certain foods, try eating a bland diet for a few days to see if it still occurs.  Add a bunch of broccoli on the last day and voila, you should have your answer!

Sugarloaf
New Member


Date Joined Jan 2006
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 1/5/2006 2:24 PM (GMT -7)   
Thank you all for you very prompt replies. Much appreciated :-)
 
bunnybabe - I guess you could call them coffee-ground looking. They remind me more of finely chopped basil or chives, lol. Sorry to hear you're a fellow toilet obsessive. I've only gotten this way over the past couple of months.
 
dbab - It's good to hear I'm not the only one. At least your doc offered his opinion from your description.
 
7Lil - Thank you for your reassurance. I really do think I'm over-obsessing. I will see my doc if I think it is getting worse. Right now, I just want to establish a pattern w/ what I'm eating and what I'm seeing, lol.
 
blondie15 - Sorry to hear about your IBS but thank you for your opinion : )
 
Sarita - OK, that's a great idea. Why didn't I think of that? I'll cook myself up another big plate of broccoli and check my subsequent BM's. That should give me precisely the answer I'm lokoing for.
 
 

Randini3
New Member


Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 1/10/2007 3:46 PM (GMT -7)   

Have you found out any answers to the black specks????

I have been having the same thing for well over a year. It scares me and I dont know what they are. I dont see how they can be particles of undigested food when I eat different things all the time and the BM specks always look the same.  On the paper it looks like sand/or coffee grounds. And there are millions of them. 

I have an appt with week with a gastrointerologist, but I went to one before who just sat across the room from me and told me that he wasnt the doctor i needed to see.... Ok, im having bowel problems, and you are a bowel doctor, but I am not at the right place????  I didnt understand... So I kind of gave up. I work at a gastro doctors office now, so I made myself an appointment, and hopefully I can get some answers.

I was seen at a naturopathic office before who did take a stool sample, but they didnt seem to think anything was weird about the millions of black things in it....  ????

Hopefully I can get some answers, and if anyone here could post what they find out that would be helpful.
I was kind of releaved to see that other people have had this too.
 

ozonehole
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2006
Total Posts : 548
   Posted 1/11/2007 10:11 PM (GMT -7)   
Well, it only took about 10 seconds to search on Google to come up with this:

http://www.baptistonline.org/health/library/SYMP3225.asp

So yes, it could be blood in the stool. A stool exam would be in order.
Crohn's since 1988
3 resections


Randini3
New Member


Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 1/31/2007 4:36 PM (GMT -7)   
Ok, I have had tests done. No blood was found.  Just wondering if anyone that is having this same problem is taking an iron supplement. Whether alone, or in a multi vitamin.  Because the specks completely went away when I forgot to take my supplement for a week. I took it two days in a row and tada! Back came the specks.

Keriamon
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jun 2005
Total Posts : 2976
   Posted 2/1/2007 3:30 PM (GMT -7)   
My pee certainly becomes neon yellow when I take a multi-vitamin with too many vitamins in it--B-12 I think it is that turns your pee neon yellow. So it's certainly possible that you're pooping out excess vitamins. Do your pills contain more than 100% of the FDA recommended daily allowance for any vitamin? A lot of them do. My mother and another nurse both said that you will expel excess vitamins from your system, so getting more than 100% of what you need is a waste of money and makes your kidneys and other organs have to work that much harder.

Of course, some vitamins are dangerous in excess. I posted a news article last week or the week before about someone testing vitamins and finding that many vitamin pills had a lot more vitamins in them than was listed on the label--dangerous amounts of some. The article did list a few vitamins that were accurate to their labels; if you have to have vitamins for some reason, then at least swtich to one of those.

Randini3
New Member


Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 2/1/2007 3:36 PM (GMT -7)   
Thanks for the info! Thats good to know. But my main concern is just the iron. I am trying to do some research to see if that might be causing the black specks. I am not having any other problems with my vitamins.

Randini3
New Member


Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 2/5/2007 2:44 PM (GMT -7)   
Ok, i am convinced its the Iron now. No specks and i have been off of it for 4 or 5 days!

7Lil
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 3269
   Posted 2/5/2007 3:12 PM (GMT -7)   
Randini,
Thanks for the update... This is good to know!
Hope you continue to be black bit free.  tongue
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jhet
New Member


Date Joined Jun 2005
Total Posts : 9
   Posted 2/5/2007 4:33 PM (GMT -7)   
hi everyone,
 
I've been a member of this boards for quite sometime but I was usually always at the Heart thread due to my MVP.  I still have it though but I was also recently diagnosed with IBS. sad   Well, as I've been reading your posts re the black specks, I can actually relate to that. yeah   I've been having that on and off for a couple of months now and I also asked my GP and my Gastro if it's normal and they both said that it could probably because of what I ate, any undigested food or any medicine taken. I even told them how obssess I am when it comes to my stools ..I'm very keen of checking it's consistency, shape and colour...ohhh....my Gastro told me not to be obssess about it 'coz the shape, consistency and colour once again depends on what we eat.  And not to mention that I also had fissures whenever I pass hard stools eyes   I also told my doctors about it.  Anyway, recently I've been having soft stools (but formed) though they're quite short in measurement and sometimes not really bulky.  I sometimes wonder where my food went eyes As an IBS sufferer I don't usually experience constipation but I'm having semi-diarrhea..soft stools but not loose. Anyone who experienced this? soft stools and short and not bulky? any input will be appreciated. Thanks in advance :-)

God is GOOD ALL THE TIME.


Randini3
New Member


Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 2/5/2007 4:40 PM (GMT -7)   
I have had so many problems with my bowels for the last couple of years. Recently I have been eating the Activia yogurt, which says it is guaranteed to help your digestive system in 14 days. I have been going more and more lately and it looks normal! side and shape! You might try that.

Randini3
New Member


Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 2/21/2007 3:24 PM (GMT -7)   
Ok, to whoever is still having this problem. I put my theory to the test, and I have been off of Iron supplements for a few weeks now and NO MORE SPECKS!!!! None at all.  So I'm sure thats what the problem was. So if you are taking a multi vitamin with iron in it, you might want to stop taking it just to see if that makes a difference. I couldnt believe that I went years with this problem and finally found the answer! I heard that iron could cause stomach problems, but I had no idea!

Keriamon
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jun 2005
Total Posts : 2976
   Posted 2/21/2007 4:06 PM (GMT -7)   
I'm glad that such a scary symptom was so easily fixed. Has the Activia helped you any too?

Randini3
New Member


Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 2/21/2007 4:08 PM (GMT -7)   
I think it did. Whenever I would eat it, it would help my BM's the next day.

wakeupandora
New Member


Date Joined Nov 2007
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 11/1/2007 7:16 AM (GMT -7)   
I discovered black bits/coffee grounds only after beginning a prenatal vitamin, which was a boost of all the supplements from my original vitamin (that i did not take regularly!).

So now I am regularly taking an iron supplement and have this black specks.

Does anyone know when they should go away? Or does Iron just continuely form them?
Thanks!

article19
New Member


Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 6/7/2008 3:45 AM (GMT -7)   
I've had the black specks for quite a while and not on an iron supplement. I also have a lot of undigested 'bits' which sometimes scare the life out of me. I do take zinc everyday and have similar bowel activity to that of jhet. I wondered if it could be the zinc acting in a similar way to the iron?

7Lil
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 3269
   Posted 6/8/2008 7:14 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi article19,
Welcome to HealingWell! :-)
Are you taking zinc as prescribed by your doc? Only reason I ask is because more than 40mg a day can interfere with the other absorbtion of minerals... especially iron, magnesium and copper. IF you're taking more than 40mg, the black bits could very well be iron that isn't being absorbed.
You really should ask your doctor about the black bits if you haven't already. A stool test is pretty easy and non-invasive.
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ashley639
New Member


Date Joined Mar 2009
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 3/15/2009 7:09 AM (GMT -7)   

Hi guys, I just started taking colonix colon cleanser and I noticed the "black specks as well" It's supposed to get rid of parasites and toxins your body has built up over the years - hopefully it's not parasites

Hope this helps!

 

ROTTMOM
New Member


Date Joined May 2009
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 5/13/2009 10:35 PM (GMT -7)   
The black specs in poop are probably LICORICE!  It has alot of Iron. I know I was wondering and found out that it was probably Licorice because I was worried. The specs are bigger than coffee grounds, more like cake sprinkles or bigger. There has been a whole tub of Red Vines that at work I have been tearing up. So Im pretty sure. Take it easy. I have IBS too.

LadyinOhio
New Member


Date Joined Jul 2011
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 7/16/2011 7:16 AM (GMT -7)   
HI. I am new here & have not been diagnosed with IBS but I know that is coming..
I have diarrhea every morning fir months.. My liver has hurt for over a year since I had iron infusions. I started juicing 2weeks ago to clean out my liver with organic veggies/fruits. I recently had a lot of black specs on the toilet paper. At first they were large but as time has gone by they are getting smaller. I have not had any blood in my stool.

My interest is with another poster saying when they stopped iron the specs stopped. I don't take iron every day. I am also on a probiotic & read it can kill candida & that can come out like black specs...
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