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List recommendations you would give to a patient who is suffering from constipation.

List recommendations you would give to a patient who is suffering from constipation.


List recommendations you would give to a patient who is suffering from constipation.
List recommendations you would give to a patient who is suffering from constipation.

What is the treatment for constipation?

You can treat most cases of mild to moderate constipation at home. Self-care begins with taking stock of what you eat and drink and then making changes.

Some suggestions for relieving constipation include:

Drink two to four additional glasses of water per day. Avoid caffeine-containing beverages and alcohol, which can dehydrate you.
Increase your intake of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and other high-fiber foods. Reduce your intake of high-fat foods such as meat, eggs, and cheese.
Consume prunes and/or bran cereal.
Keep a food diary and identify the foods that cause constipation.
Get moving and work out.
Examine how you sit on the toilet. Raising your feet, leaning back, or squatting may help you have a bowel movement more easily.
Add an over-the-counter fiber supplement to your diet (such as Metamucil®, Citrucel®, or Benefiber®).
Take a very mild over-the-counter stool softener or laxative (such as docusate [Colace®] or Milk of Magnesia®) if necessary. Other options include mineral oil enemas like Fleet® and stimulant laxatives like bisacodyl (Dulcolax®) or senna (Senokot®). There are numerous laxative options. Consult your pharmacist or doctor for assistance in making a decision. Use laxatives for no more than two weeks without consulting your doctor. Excessive use of laxatives can aggravate your symptoms.
While trying to move your bowels, do not read, use your phone, or use any other devices.
Review of medications/supplements

Your doctor will review your medications and supplements, in addition to self-care methods (if you take any). Some of these products have the potential to cause constipation. If they do, your doctor may adjust the dose, switch to another medication, or ask you to discontinue the supplement. Never stop taking your medications or supplements without first consulting your doctor.

Medications on prescription

There are a few prescription drugs available to treat constipation. Lubiprostone (Amitiza®), prucalopride (Prudac®, Motegrity®), plecanatide (Trulance®), lactulose (Cephulac®, Kristalose®), and linaclotide (Linzess®) are a few examples. Based on the results of your tests, your doctor will select the drug that may be most effective for you.


Constipation is rarely treated surgically. If constipation is caused by a structural problem in the colon, your doctor may recommend surgery. A blockage in the colon (intestinal obstruction), a narrowing in a portion of the intestine (intestinal stricture), a tear in the anus (anal fissure), or the collapse of part of the rectum into the vagina are examples of these problems (rectal prolapse). Surgery may be used to treat some causes of outlet dysfunction constipation. This should be discussed after testing. If cancer was discovered in your colon, rectum, or anus, you may also require surgery.

List recommendations you would give to a patient who is suffering from constipation.

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