What is fecal stones?In the short term, feces can reduce well-being and cause gastrointestinal complaints. If the digestive system is completely blocked, fecal vomiting may occur, resulting in infections of the pharynx.
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A fecal (coprolite) is a mostly round, about cherry-sized Kotballen. The quite common sheep kills - as the vernacular calls them - have the same color as the rest of the feces, but are strongly hardened. Around the hard layer are several layers of mucus and dried intestinal contents.
Faeces settle in blind-ending intestinal sections and curvatures in the large intestine, the diverticula (protuberances of the intestinal wall) and in the rectum. Most of the time they go by themselves with the bowel movement. However, they become dangerous if they cause diseases such as intestinal obstruction or a breakthrough in the abdomen with subsequent peritonitis.
Feces are usually associated with chronic constipation and are then in the rectum, where they obstruct the intestinal passage and pass only thin chair. Then the impression arises that the patient suffers from diarrhea (paradoxical diarrhea). If the feces go off alone, they often cause bowel irritation and pain.
The stool thickens to a fecal stool if it is transported too slowly through the intestine due to insufficient intestinal peristalsis and then it is deprived of too much fluid. This is usually the case in people with irregular and chronic constipation. Other causes of fecal stones include irritable bowel syndrome, colon cancer and normal metabolic deposits in the intestine.
Patients with constipation usually take too little fluid or have to take sedative medications, which naturally have a calming effect on the intestinal peristalsis. In addition, they often feed low fiber, fat and sugar, so that not enough stool volume can be built. Also, a long-term abuse of laxatives and - in diabetics - a disruption of conduction by a diabetic polyneuropathy can lead to the formation of feces.
Symptoms, complaints & signs
Feces can interfere with the transport of the feces through the intestine so that they cause stabbing colicky pain as the intestinal contents pass by. Once deposited in diverticula, they sometimes cause diverticulitis: the persistent pressure of the faeces on the intestinal wall leads to ulcers in the intestinal mucosa. If the stone breaks through the intestinal wall, it can cause peritonitis. If diverticulitis also spreads to other areas of the intestine, intestinal fistulas and abscesses are often the result.
Since many feces are so hidden that they cause little discomfort, they are sometimes discovered only in a bowel operation. If they are in the rectum, they can be palpated manually in a normal bowel examination. If they protrude into the cavity of the intestine, they can be detected by endoscopy. On x-rays, feces are usually well visible.
An ultrasound diagnosis, however, is not so sure: The bright areas on the image may also indicate gas in the intestine. If the faeces disturb the normal intestinal passage of the faeces, they often cause stinging abdominal pain. If they are not removed or go off by themselves, they can cause life-threatening intestinal obstruction. If they cause cracks on the intestinal mucosa, it can lead to intestinal mucosal inflammation and - in the case of a breakthrough in the abdomen - to peritonitis (peritonitis).
Feces can cause various complications. First, there is a risk of intestinal obstruction, which can subsequently lead to life-threatening complications such as intestinal perforation and blood poisoning. In addition, feces can lead to the development of fecal abscesses, which require further treatment.
In the short term, feces can reduce well-being and cause gastrointestinal complaints. If the digestive system is completely blocked, fecal vomiting may occur, resulting in infections of the pharynx. In extreme cases, this may develop into pneumonia, which in turn is associated with serious complications.
Due to the severity of these complications, rapid therapy is recommended. When treating fecal stones, it can lead to various complaints. When removing a larger droppings, for example, an afterrip often occurs, which can ignite and lead to the formation of abscesses.
Laxatives can lead to a shortage of mineral or dehydration in the medium term, along with fatigue and generally reduced performance. Intestinal irrigation may cause irritation and other side effects due to the preparations used. Rarely, the preparations used cause allergic reactions and cause, for example, diarrhea.
When should you go to the doctor?
A limp will only in some cases encourage a visit to the doctor, as many feces are very small and very hidden. Sometimes they cause no discomfort, except that they can lead to pain on leaving. In addition, small specimens often go unnoticed.
However, if a coprolith is perceived by the person concerned, a visit to the doctor is advised. The outgoing or existing feces of sufficient size manifests itself, for example, with colicky pain, by severe pain during bowel movements, a persistent constipation or by a miserere. Sometimes he is also palpable on the abdominal wall, inasmuch as he is big enough and in a corresponding place in the intestine.
If the feces have gone off, the walk to the doctor is necessary to determine the eventual origin. So metabolic diseases or nutrition can often be the reason. A family doctor can be a first stop. A proctologist may be required to remove fecal stones and examine the intestine.
If the symptoms point to an internal coprolite, a quick medical examination is recommended. After all, such a condition poses the possibility of life-threatening complications and sometimes restricts the affected person very much because the entire digestive system may be disturbed.
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Therapy & Treatment
In the presence of intestinal obstruction (ileus) there is danger to life. He has to be eliminated as soon as possible. Also, the diverticulitis and the breakthrough of the faeces in the lower abdomen space must be treated as soon as possible. Often the droppings are surgically removed. Even in the upper intestinal area faeces deposits surgery is required.
Stones deposited in the rectum can be manually cleared by a specialist or a specially trained caregiver or disintegrated by means of several enemas. An evacuation is usually after two failed attempt, the fecal pests The intestinal wall is gently stimulated with circular movements, so that the bale loosens and can be brought out to soften with iso-osmular drinking solution, carried out.
Even if the patient then feels great relief, the removal is usually very painful and is perceived as unpleasant. Even colon hydrotherapy (colonic irrigation) can flush out feces. Since it is much more water (about 35 liters) is introduced into the intestine as in an enema, it can also be additionally incrustations removed by deposited indigestible food components and metabolic waste products.
As a rule, three intestinal rinses are necessary to cleanse the intestinal turns in otherwise inaccessible places. Since several different water temperatures are used (up to 41 degrees and up to 21 degrees), also the intestinal peristalsis is stimulated. For faecal stones that are associated with intestinal disease, the underlying disease is treated first. The elimination of constipation is done by giving more or less strong laxatives, a diet change.
Outlook & Forecast
Basically, it can be assumed that a fecal matter can be eliminated without and with the help of a doctor. This results in a favorable prognosis. However, the treatment varies considerably. If there is no severe pain or bleeding, those affected can usually relieve symptoms through self-help measures. An adequate hydration and a fiber-rich diet counter the problem.
The situation is different with complications such as intestinal obstruction. In this case there is danger to life. A doctor should be consulted immediately. First, the medical professionals try to solve the problem manually. If this fails, an operation becomes necessary. The last procedure is always given for a breakthrough in the lower abdomen. Patients should not ignore the typical symptoms. In case of severe complaints, the consultation of a doctor is essential. Those who delay the start of treatment for several days risk further inflammation. A regular bowel movement is impossible in the episode.
Patients with chronic constipation are considered vulnerable to the feces. They advised to be more careful. Doctors advise a susceptibility to regular intestinal flushing. The diet and living habits have to be changed permanently.
As fecal stones often occur in combination with (chronic) constipation and constipation, it is recommended to use a fiber-rich, low-sugar and low-fat diet. In addition, the person affected should take at least 2.5 liters of liquid throughout the day and pay attention to daily bowel movements.
From time to time a colon cleansing with certain herbs, psyllium or chlorella is recommended. Pro-biotic foods also help to rebuild the damaged intestinal flora. Also useful are colon massages (bedridden are required!) And certain peristalsis stimulating exercises.
A limp can be successfully eliminated. Often, not even a medical treatment is necessary. If there are no more complaints, there are no reasons for scheduled follow-up examinations. Because unlike tumors, where the aftercare always takes place, there is no potentially life-threatening situation that requires early treatment.
An extension of the disease in the form of metastases is not given. Patients are told the causes of the first treated feces. At the same time, they also receive behavioral tips for their daily lives when they are likely to be vulnerable. However, the implementation of these instructions falls within the area of responsibility of those affected.
A medical check-up does not take place. Suitable preventive measures include a high-fiber and low-fat diet. The fluid intake should be at least two liters per day. People with chronic constipation and bowel irritation are considered at risk. For them, the long-term intake of certain sedative drugs may be useful.
The feces are dissolved by it. If the typical symptoms recur in patients after a first diagnosis, they should consult a doctor immediately. Depending on the extent of constipation, there is danger to life. Suitable acute methods of detecting a faeces are x-rays and endoscopy.
You can do that yourself
Feces can only be treated by sufferers if they have not yet led to complications (intestinal obstruction, miserere, etc.). In such cases, operations or manual clearing are inevitable.
Thus, small fecal stones and those that have formed in uncomplicated places, may be brought by affected persons by stimulating the peristalsis to defecation. Exercise, a balanced diet and drinking enough fluid can help. In addition, the corresponding place - insofar as it is known - be massaged by a massage from the outside with some emphasis. This can lead to a disintegration or further migration of the faeces.
Even an enema helps. It is not necessary to add substances to the water. However, water inlets (several hundred milliliters) only help when the feces are in the last section of the intestine. Several enemas with changing temperatures should be performed. Excessive use of (herbal) laxatives is discouraged, as it can lead to diarrhea, but these will not be dissolved feces. So only dehydration and demineralization are risked.
If pain, discomfort, bleeding and other ailments occur, stop all self-help and consult a doctor.