I'll be blunt, CONSTIPATION!

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Fionabee
Fionabee Member Posts: 146
edited 23. Feb 2014, 16:11 in Living with Arthritis archive
Hi all.
Sorry if this has been covered before.
Have suffered from C all my life (Mum took me to docs when I was about 4) the only time it doesn't bother is Christmas, and I put that down to eating more fatty foods and alcohol!
Analgesics have made this worse, I think Co-codomol was the worst culprit of all. I really do eat a good mixed diet, I'm sensible.
I thought LEPICOL was the answer to my prayers, its a natural husk that you mix with water (a bit like Fybogel etc) makes a horrid sloppy gel, but it worked! But since my TKR I have really struggled, analgesics are right down, just Tramadol 50mgs at night, I'm guessing it is the inactivity (but I am getting moving more)
Over the counter stuff apart from lactulose did nothing even in higher doses, senna gave me tummy cramps. Lactulose (60mls twice a day)worked but with too many unpleasant side effects!!!
Does anyone have a natural sort of therapy that works for you?
At the moment i'm taking Allbran + prunes, prune juice, 2 oranges, 1 apple, brown bread (with best fibre content) nothing processed, cook from scratch, plenty of veg or salad,drink as much as I can, but am only prepared to get up to the loo once at night, plus the Lepicol. I really can't think what else to eat??
Any suggestions?
Thank you, Fiona.

Comments

  • barbara12
    barbara12 Member Posts: 21,281
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Oh Fiona I do feel for you..cocodamols do the same to me and now the pain patches make things worse..at the min I am eating prunes and taking movicol...not sure if this is different from the fybergel but it works for me,
    I hope you find somethings soon, I would have a chat with your GP rather than leave it , or the chemist...good luck.
    Love
    Barbara
  • Fionabee
    Fionabee Member Posts: 146
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    CORRECTION.
    LEPICOL is actually called WHOLE PSYLLIUM HUSKS.
    I'm sure the tub was labelled Lepicol at some stage. If you Google that word it takes you straight to their website.
    Fiona
  • dreamdaisy
    dreamdaisy Member Posts: 31,520
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    'Blocked drains' is a very common topic on here thanks to the pain relief meds and my advice remains the same: drink plenty of water and eat figs, dried or fresh. If that doesn't work then ask your GP for either Movicol powders or Docusate capsules: I occasionally take the latter and they work like a dream. DD
    Have you got the despatches? No, I always walk like this. Eddie Braben
  • mig
    mig Member Posts: 7,154
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    I occasionally have this problem and after trial and error find pontefract cakes work for me (licorice )I now know about how many to eat so they work ,I once ate too many well you can guess what happened.Good luck.Mig
  • hileena111
    hileena111 Member Posts: 7,099
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Hi
    I sympathise with you......going through the same thing at the moment. I think its the lack of exercise with me. I'm just 3 and a half weeks post THR and not doing a lot.....plus of course the pain killers etc
    Reading this thread with interest

    Love
    Hileena
  • Helenbothknees
    Helenbothknees Member Posts: 487
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    This is slightly off the wall but might be worth a try as it's natural and harmless.....

    I have almost permanent mild diarrhoea, and have had it for years (except when on codeine!) However, recently I had some dental problems, and had to stop my usual practice of eating apple cores including the pips, which I've done out of habit for years...I had to cut up the apples into small bits instead. Result - no more diarrhoea, but it came back again once I started eating apples the old way, ie including the cores/pips!

    I told you it was off the wall. But it might be worth a try. I do eat at least three apples per day, so you may need quite a lot!
  • Fionabee
    Fionabee Member Posts: 146
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Ha, ha!! Blocked drains, that's a good one, haven't heard before. I had Movecol once, believe I maybe didn't give it a long enough chance to establish a routine, I believe it is the expensive one, but I do have a pre paid prescription card for this year, so that's not a concern just now. I know they tell us that only a tiny proportion of us pay for scripts, it's cold comfort when you are one of them!
    I'd really like a natural solution, perhaps I'll include figs and more apples, including pips! I always cut apples up as I worry about by teeth (my teeth are my jewellery now) these days, the dog will be put out as I give him the cores!!
  • stickywicket
    stickywicket Member Posts: 27,731
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    I very rarely get constipated and, if I do, a few dried figs daily usually sort me out. Factors that might be relevant are - I don't eat meat; I do eat loads of fruit and veg; not much cheese or chocolate, always wholemeal bread and I drink an awful lot of tea in a day and, if I feel thirsty, I never let concerns about getting up in the night stop me from drinking. I usually do only get up once, occasionally twice, occasionally not at all. It's a nuisance but, with years of RA and meds behind me, I think it's best to keep flushing my kidneys out whatever. I also rarely take more than 2 low dose cocodamol daily. Hope this helps.
    If at first you don't succeed, then skydiving definitely isn't for you.
    Steven Wright
  • marrianne
    marrianne Member Posts: 1,161
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Rabbit ones grr
  • dreamdaisy
    dreamdaisy Member Posts: 31,520
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Oh marrianne! I apologise but, hon, that made me laugh! I've had that too - a great deal of effort for little reward. :oops: DD
    Have you got the despatches? No, I always walk like this. Eddie Braben
  • dibdab
    dibdab Member Posts: 1,498
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Thank you for the smile :D .... sorry!

    Coco's are the culprit in my world, porridge and at least 2 large oranges plus whole meal bread and plenty of other fruit/veg every day are the solution- and lots of tea!
  • dachshund
    dachshund Member Posts: 9,030
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Hello Fionabee
    I take co-co's and have the same problem. I have porridge and all bran crunch. plenty of veg no red meat ihave grapes cherries and oranges.and licoric.i tried fibogel not nice i'm now on iron tabs.
    good luck
    joan xx
    take care
    joan xx
  • villier
    villier Member Posts: 4,426
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Having chronic constipation due to a neurological condition and after spending a week in hospital with an impacted bowel a few years ago, I was given Laxido(same as movicol) and senna which I had to take every day, even at that there were odd times I was still constipated, my GP gave me Micralax(enemas) a few years down the line I am now on only one sachet of Laxido a day occasionally a Micralax. I have tried many natural remedies without success. Maybe you need to try the Movicol for a little while longer it may help to get you regular..............Marie xx
    Smile a while and while you smile
    smile another smile and soon there
    will be miles and miles of smiles
    just because you smiled I wish your
    day is full of Smiles
  • Dakky
    Dakky Member Posts: 53
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Ton of veg and plenty of seeded bread, water too. Co-cods are a right pain for blocking me up.
  • Sarah01
    Sarah01 Member Posts: 192
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Hi Fionabee,

    I have suffered with constipation for years. No matter how much fruit and veg and water I drank, nothing...!!!

    I started taking Dulcolax and they worked a treat.

    When I had my THR I was given lactulose and dulcolax to help as I was on morphine, it didn't work. After 7 days I still couldn't go. My Dr prescribed more lactulose and movical. It took a few days but I finally managed to go.

    I then changed my diet as I didn't want to be so severely constipated again, I have shredded wheat every morning for breakfast and plenty of fibre along with drinking plenty of water. I also changed from normal wholemeal bread to seeded bread. As I am still recovering from the surgery I hardly drink coffee and hey presto, for the first time in years I can go every day without the need of lactulose, movical or dulcolax.

    Everybody is different when eating different foods but it may be worth a try????

    Sarah x
  • Fionabee
    Fionabee Member Posts: 146
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Hi Sarah
    I think I must have looked at the nutritional panel on every cereal, it's fibre I need I think, and I know with fibre you have to drink. I think allbran offers the most fibre per portion, wonder what the wonder ingredient is in shredded wheat. I feel embarrassed even mentioning it at the doctors, I don't think they believe me when I describe my diet! When I am a really old lady, the nurses will say "oh she's always going on about her bowels and roll their eyes"! My husband goes to the loo at the same time every morning, I so envy him"
  • Sarah01
    Sarah01 Member Posts: 192
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Hi Fiona,

    Wish I knew what the secret was in shredded wheat, I would bottle it :)

    I always had porridge or weetabix for breakfast so thought I would try it as I am not a big fan of allbran or bran flakes. I know how you feel about discussing it with the doctors. During my hospital stay I mentioned it to them and asked if I could take a dulcolax. They gave me 1 tablet, didn't do me any good considering you are supposed to take 2 before bed.

    When I came home and rang my surgery, they put me through to a doctor. She was so understanding and straight away gave me a prescription for the movicol. I hate discussing my bowels with them as they always look at me as if to say eat more fibre...!!!! Needless to say I am sticking to the shredded wheat because it is certainly doing something :D
  • Fionabee
    Fionabee Member Posts: 146
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Hi Sarah
    Its good when you find a solution that works for you, I thought I had, I think its the cocktail of meds I've taken over the past weeks plus not being more active. When we were in Spain a few yrs ago I had to go to a pharmacy and ask for some suppositories. Needless to say they had no idea what i was talking about, each member of staff came to see if they could help. I ended up drawing one on a bit of paper and pantomiming where it went! They then said "ahh sooppositoria!" and I thought, thats just what I said! I try and go everywhere prepared now, but wd b mortified if they went thru my luggage!!
  • Sarah01
    Sarah01 Member Posts: 192
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Hi Fiona,

    What is it with the meds??? They are great for pain relief but they play havoc on your bowels. When I was in hospital they went through the medication I am allergic to. They asked me why I couldn't take codeine, when I explained about my bowels they said no problem, we understand and we won't give you them. They failed to tell me that morphine was just as bad as codeine, part of me thinks they should have given me something for my bowels from day 1 of taking the morphine :(

    That must have been a nightmare trying to explain what you needed when you were away.

    How is the knee doing?

    Sarah x
  • Julie37927
    Julie37927 Bots Posts: 35
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Unfortunately all too common. I have tried many things over the years here is a list of my do's and don'ts. It has been a bit of trial and error over the years so it may take some time to find what works for you.
    Do's
    Eat lots of pineapple, mango, cocoanut, almonds, dried apricots, avocado, turnip, soybeans
    Chew all food well
    HYDRATION, HYDRATION, HYDRATION
    Eat lots of fibre food
    Exercise, move that body (simply walking should help)
    Yoga-yes and there is even research to support this!
    Don'ts
    Do not smoke (try to quit)
    Do not drink alcohol excessively
    Do not eat anything with white flour (I know almost impossible)
    Do not eat rice, cheese, preserves, white sugar, hard boiled eggs, any or all refined foods.
    Be careful with the meds your on, many cause constipation, but some are worse than others, if you can change them, do. Talk to your GP

    Good Luck!!