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Birunji
Regular Member


Date Joined Sep 2007
Total Posts : 60
   Posted 1/8/2008 11:08 AM (GMT -7)   
When does narrow stool become a cause for concern? This is a relatively new symptom for me (BMs have been getting narrower over the past few weeks) and I'm starting to wonder. For the last 5 months or so, I had loose BMs (like soft serve), mucous and blood about 3-5x a day. Lately, however, I have loose BMs that are very narrow (between pencil thin and 1 cm diameter) and sometimes have long ridges on them, with mucous and blood and cramping about 10-12x a day. Sometimes, nothing come out but mucous and blood, but I still have serious urgency every time (thank god there's a single stall bathroom down the hall from my desk). Today, I've gone 7 times between waking at 7:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. I don't have much D to speak of, but it comes occasionally and is more like oatmeal than watery (gross, I know). And it seems like I have to go every time I eat something, even if its just Ensure.
 
I put in a call to my GI doc and am waiting for his call back. I have an appointment in about a week, but I'm just concerned since this has been getting progressively worse. What do you think? Do I just wait it out, or is there something I can/should do in the meantime? I'm sticking to Ensure, Gatorade, and Saltines today... Is this just a regular old flare? I'm still pretty new to this, and my symptoms before being diagnosed were so bad/different (crazy bloody D every half hour, etc.) that I just recently came to terms with the fact that I'm probably still technically flaring.
 
Thanks!
 
Diagnosed with left-sided UC June 2007
Asacol 400 mg 9/day
Zoloft 75 mg
Iron, Multivitamin, & Probiotic Yogurt (when I remember)


GardenerJames
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jan 2006
Total Posts : 616
   Posted 1/8/2008 11:21 AM (GMT -7)   
Sounds like inflammation in your rectum. I refer to it as the playdough extruder bm. It's one symptom I've never been able to overcome, even though I consider myself to be pretty much in remission.
Blood and mucous however would definitely give me cause to call the GI, so don't worry too much but I'm glad you called your GI.
As Quincy will probably mention shortly hereafter you should probably try out some rectal meds too.
James
Asacol 4 tabs 2x daily www.myspace.com/gardenerjames
Forvia once a day
Probiotic twice daily
Methotrexate 3 pills once a week
Actonel once a week
Calcium supp.
1 mg Folic Acid daily
Omega-3 once daily
Eleventh Remicade infusion End of January


JennKuc
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2007
Total Posts : 49
   Posted 1/8/2008 11:25 AM (GMT -7)   
My turn to respond to your question! :-) Narrow stools is just another symptom of a flare for me. I usually experience it when I'm starting to get well from a flare...but it can happen anytime i'm sure. I've heard that it's the constricting on the colon that does it. Having the urgency and then only blood and mucous come out, is also another normal symptom for me when flaring. The symptoms that you are experiencing now, would be a full on bad flare for me. I have not had a really bad flare in a long time, so small symptoms seem like the end of the world to me! So, your doctor doesn't have you on anything other than Asacol? And what's the Zoloft for?
29 yr old female, Columbus Ohio
Diagnosed with UC at age 14.
Colazel, Remicade ever 8 weeks, folic acid, multi vitamin, calcium

Have been in remission ever since I started Remicade over 2 years ago.


Birunji
Regular Member


Date Joined Sep 2007
Total Posts : 60
   Posted 1/8/2008 11:36 AM (GMT -7)   
GardnerJames: Thanks, it's good to know that narrow stools are nothing too crazy. :) I definitely get the Play-Doh comparison, I just couldn't remember what that tool was called!

JennKuc: Also good to know that some would consider this a serious flare. I tend to ignore things and had started to think this was just part of having UC. I'm only on Asacol, though I've only had one Dr.'s appointment since I was diagnosed in June (because of insurance issues). Since I first saw him in November, I've talked to him over the phone which led to him increasing my Asacol dosage, but that's all. I'm hoping he'll give me something else to try at my appointment next week. I think we'd just been waiting for the Asacol to kick in, but it doesn't seem to be having a major effect. I've had bleeding and mucous pretty much since June.

Thanks to you both for your responses!

The Zoloft is for depression. I may take something different/additional for anxiety soon. It's technically unrelated to my UC, or at least, pre-existing.
Diagnosed with left-sided UC June 2007
Asacol 400 mg 9/day
Zoloft 75 mg
Iron, Multivitamin, & Probiotic Yogurt (when I remember)


Birunji
Regular Member


Date Joined Sep 2007
Total Posts : 60
   Posted 1/8/2008 11:44 AM (GMT -7)   
Update: I just got off the phone with my GI doc and he wants me to start taking 20 mg of prednisone and then taper before my appointment next week. Time to go read up on prednisone I guess...

I'm vaguely familiar with the side effects, but is there anything else I should know? Is 20 mg a very high dose?
Diagnosed with left-sided UC June 2007
Asacol 400 mg 9/day
Zoloft 75 mg
Iron, Multivitamin, & Probiotic Yogurt (when I remember)


princesa
Veteran Member


Date Joined Aug 2007
Total Posts : 2198
   Posted 1/8/2008 12:08 PM (GMT -7)   
No, 20 mg is not a high dose and with a quick taper, you shouldn't notice any adverse effects.

I have hemmorrhoids that cause narrow stools for me periodically. It's not a sign of an oncoming flare for me.
Diagnosed with ulcerative colitis spring 1999
 
Therapeutic dose sulfasalazine.
Probiotics, l-glutamine and fish oil caps. George's aloe vera juice and Mucosaheal.
 
 


Birunji
Regular Member


Date Joined Sep 2007
Total Posts : 60
   Posted 1/8/2008 12:15 PM (GMT -7)   
Princesa: Thanks for the reassuring reply. Hopefully, the 20 mg of pred will do the trick and I won't have to worry about all the side effects.

Side note...how do you know if you have a hemmorrhoid?
Diagnosed with left-sided UC June 2007
Asacol 400 mg 9/day
Zoloft 75 mg
Iron, Multivitamin, & Probiotic Yogurt (when I remember)


princesa
Veteran Member


Date Joined Aug 2007
Total Posts : 2198
   Posted 1/8/2008 12:25 PM (GMT -7)   
My doc has reported internals from my scope and I have an external, too, that's visible from the outside.
Diagnosed with ulcerative colitis spring 1999
 
Therapeutic dose sulfasalazine.
Probiotics, l-glutamine and fish oil caps. George's aloe vera juice and Mucosaheal.
 
 


pb4
Elite Member


Date Joined Feb 2004
Total Posts : 20577
   Posted 1/8/2008 12:35 PM (GMT -7)   
20mg of pred may very likely do absoultely nothing for you, so that is odd that your doc would waste your time with 20mg even if he had you at it for a long period of time, let alone a quick tapper.

I've had narrow along with large BM's in one sitting, so having narrow is not unusual by any means, it's just another pain in the arse is all.

:)
My bum is broken....there's a big crack down the middle of it!  LOL  :)


Birunji
Regular Member


Date Joined Sep 2007
Total Posts : 60
   Posted 1/8/2008 12:44 PM (GMT -7)   
pb4: That's interesting what you say about the dosage. I'm starting to get the impression that my GI doc likes to take it slow with meds (which I suppose is better than being over agressive?). I respect the approach in theory, I'm just tired of not feeling well. I guess I'll just have to see what happens. How does the whole tapering thing usually work? My doc didn't go into a lot of detail over the phone (though I'm sure the pharmacist can explain it too). Will I still be taking 20 mg when I see him next week?

I also have some questions about the mood swing issue, but I'll give that it's own post.
Diagnosed with left-sided UC June 2007
Asacol 400 mg 9/day
Zoloft 75 mg
Iron, Multivitamin, & Probiotic Yogurt (when I remember)


tjf
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2005
Total Posts : 3238
   Posted 1/8/2008 12:57 PM (GMT -7)   
When I couldn't get out of my first flare I started at 40mg and tapered down from there. The second flare I had to go up to 60mg to get the same results.

Yes you will be on 20mg if you are seeing him next week. He should layout a tapering schedule for you when you meet w/ him (be sure to bring it up). Anyway it usually workts like this...taper 5-10mg per 7-10 days. I usually taper at 10mgs and then once at 20mgs taper 5mgs. Does that make any sense?!

Hope you get to feeling better soon!
Tabitha (Tab)

100mg Azathioprine, 2 Fibercon, Colazal-9 a day, Acidopholis Pearls, Nexium

http://www.healingwell.com/donate
Co-Moderator UC Forum


Birunji
Regular Member


Date Joined Sep 2007
Total Posts : 60
   Posted 1/8/2008 1:02 PM (GMT -7)   
Tab: Thanks! That helps a lot. I wasn't sure if I was supposed to taper *before* my appointment or what...
Diagnosed with left-sided UC June 2007
Asacol 400 mg 9/day
Zoloft 75 mg
Iron, Multivitamin, & Probiotic Yogurt (when I remember)


tjf
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2005
Total Posts : 3238
   Posted 1/8/2008 1:07 PM (GMT -7)   
You should know fairly soon whether that dosage is going to work for you. Keep us posted!
Tabitha (Tab)

100mg Azathioprine, 2 Fibercon, Colazal-9 a day, Acidopholis Pearls, Nexium

http://www.healingwell.com/donate
Co-Moderator UC Forum

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