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Relieving Chronic Constipation

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This content is created or selected by the Healthgrades editorial team and is funded by an advertising sponsor. The content is subject to the Healthgrades medical review process for accuracy, balance and objectivity. The content is not edited or otherwise influenced by the advertisers appearing on this page except with the possible suggestion of the broad topic area. For more information, read the Healthgrades advertising policy.
At Your Appointment

Irritable Bowel Syndrome with Constipation Appointment Guide

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Ask the right questions at your next doctor’s appointment. Answer two questions below to personalize your appointment guide.
  • Please describe the symptoms and issues you’re having that led you to schedule this online appointment. Start at the beginning of this current episode and tell me how and when things have changed and progressed.
  • How often have you had constipation in the last month? How long did it last?
  • Have you had any episodes of watery or loose stool?
  • Rate how your symptoms are affecting your quality of life, relationships, and ability to function. Not at all, somewhat, or significantly?
  • Have you identified any specific foods that seem to trigger constipation?
  • How much soluble fiber have you added or what other changes to your diet have you made? Do you see a difference with these changes?
  • How much exercise and physical activity do you get during a typical week?
  • Do you have abdominal pain or discomfort, bloating, or gas with the constipation?
  • Do you mainly have constipation? Are your stools hard or lumpy at least a quarter of the time?
  • How often do you have normal or loose and watery stool?
  • Does your pain or other symptoms improve with a bowel movement?
  • How long have you had problems with constipation and pain?
  • Do you have a family history of bowel diseases or colon cancer?
  • Have you ever been tested for food allergies or intolerances? What were the results?
  • What treatment do you recommend for IBS-C? What are the side effects?
  • What changes do I need to make to my diet?
  • Should I take a fiber supplement?
  • What other lifestyle changes or therapies could help my chronic constipation?
  • How soon can I expect to see improvements in my symptoms?
  • What is the plan if my constipation and pain continue?
  • Do my symptoms means I have IBS-C?
  • Could my symptoms be caused by another medical condition?
  • What are the criteria for diagnosing IBS-C?
  • How is chronic constipation different than regular constipation?
  • What treatments are available for chronic constipation?
  • How do diet and other lifestyle factors affect IBS-C?
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Last Review Date: 2022 Mar 9
THIS TOOL DOES NOT PROVIDE MEDICAL ADVICE. It is intended for informational purposes only. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Never ignore professional medical advice in seeking treatment because of something you have read on the site. If you think you may have a medical emergency, immediately call your doctor or dial 911.