Q. I have severe difficulty in passing stools. What should I do?

Answered by
Dr. Muhammad Majid Hanif
and medically reviewed by iCliniq medical review team.
This is a premium question & answer published on Oct 22, 2017

Hello doctor,

I have a difficulty in passing stools and a clogging where the stool passes from the sigmoid colon to the rectum to execute a bowel movement. I just spent several hours of discomfort feeling constipated and as though I needed a bowel movement, only to pass a stool the size of a pea as I began to sit down. I have a big problem with getting anything to pass from the sigmoid colon to the rectum.



Welcome to

I have carefully reviewed your health query and can understand how worried you are about your health.

  • The symptoms you are talking about are related to constipation. And there are a lot of different reasons for constipation. Sometimes the patient has just hard stools (less water in it), and it is hard to pass it down the tract. Others may have a serious issue like obstruction anywhere along the route of the feces. This obstruction can be from outside the wall of the intestines, or it may be a lesion inside the bowels. I meant to say that it is a complex pathology that needs to be addressed properly. For that, we need to rule out the underlying cause. Examination of the lower digestive tract is mandatory in this case.
  • In my opinion, the next best step is to consult a gastroenterologist for a proper evaluation. He will go for an arrangement of investigations. On passing a camera-assisted device from below, we will be able to aid in making a diagnosis. The treatment goes accordingly after that.
  • If the patient has an obstruction of the lumen of the intestine and he takes laxatives, it may worsen the situation and may sometimes lead to complications too. Cancers or benign lesions inside the lumen cause an obstruction that hinders the path of stools. Laxatives do their job but only with building up more pressure inside the lumen of the tube. It can be dangerous because if the wall is weak somewhere, it may cause a rupture of the intestine and spillover of the contents into the abdominal cavity causing a life-threatening infection.
  • I would recommend you make an appointment with your gastroenterologist and discuss the colonoscopy details with him as I aforementioned. At any point during the course of treatment, if you need any help, you may contact me. I would be happy to assist and explain the things to you.


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