Q. I have severe stomach cramps, bloating, and constipation due to IBS-C. Please help.

Answered by
Dr. Ajeet Kumar
and medically reviewed by Dr. Sneha Kannan
This is a premium question & answer published on Aug 31, 2020 and last reviewed on: Jun 06, 2023

Hi doctor,

I suffer from IBS-C. It got started four months back. I had severe stomach cramps, bloating, constipation and gas. I stopped taking gluten and dairy products in my diet. I started taking probiotics, oats, chia seeds, and all sorts of tea to have some relief. Before a month, I waked up with severe pressure in my bladder. I got fainted and I was admitted to the hospital. The doctor did not take my situation as a serious condition and he gave me laxatives. He advised me to take it once a day for a month. I was afraid to become dependent on them and stopped taking them after two weeks. Now, I go to the bathroom daily. I have pain consistently and I have a feeling of having incomplete defecation. My stool is always like pebbles. I have stomach fullness always and tiredness in my body.



Welcome to

You seem to have a problem with the defecation or popping mechanism. It is called dyssynergic defecation or obstructive constipation. In this condition, the muscle responsible for the passage of stools works in a quite bizarre and uncoordinated manner. You have a less likely chance to have IBS-C (irritable bowel syndrome with constipation). As abdominal pain occurs as a predominant symptom in IBS patients, stools get delayed due to a delayed urge to pass stools. Laxatives are given as irritant types.

It causes irritation of the large bowel resulting in spontaneous bowel movement. They can cause dependence. Bulk-forming laxatives like Isabgol or polyethylene glycol works by increasing the bulk of the stool and so it creates effective bowel movement regularly among individuals with obstructive constipation. There is another condition called Hirschsprung disease where a portion of a large bowel gets narrowed. Before going for an investigation, I need a detailed history.

Please mention whether you use a finger to evacuate stools. Please mention whether you change your posture on the toilet seat to pass stools. Please mention whether you stay before 30 minutes for having stools. Please mention whether you are facing difficulty in passing stool from childhood. Please mention whether any of your siblings have similar symptoms. Please mention whether you have weight loss or blood in stools. Please give me answers to my questions.

You can start taking Polyethylene glycol powder 17 grams sachet. Use 1 to 2 sachet twice daily by mixing them with water. Take plenty of water of approximately two to three liters. If nothing helps, you can have biofeedback therapy. It is computerized learning of the art of pooping or else you can consult a doctor to get online prescription.

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