Bowel With Mucus
It is quite common to have little mucus in the daily stool for many of us. Mucus is a soft jelly substance that lines the intestine and the colon to keep it lubricated. Hence during bowel movement, some part of the mucus can get mixed up and expelled. However it is not common to have excess of mucus in the stool. It can be due to infection or any other medical condition which needs to be investigated. For some people streaks of blood can be present in the stool along with mucus. In such cases it is wise to seek prompt medical attention. If you have pain in the abdomen, diarrhea or bloody mucus stool you can check with your doctor early. Medical conditions like ulcerative colitis, IBS or irritable bowel disease or Crohn’s disease can cause such symptoms. Minor problems like anal tear or fistulas can also cause mucus in stool.
In this article, we shall know about the various symptoms and causes of mucus in stool.
Symptoms Of Mucus in the Bowel Movement :
The signs and symptoms of mucus in stool may vary from one person with another, depending on the cause. It can cause abdominal pain, swelling or distension of abdomen, diarrhea, foul smelling stool, blood spots on the stool, excess of gas, change in color and texture of stool, loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting and fecal incontinence. In severe cases it can be accompanied with fever, chills, tiredness and hives. All these symptoms indicate prompt medical attention. If you happen to see someone having mucus in stool with signs of change of alertness, loss of consciousness, sudden change in behavior and high fever, take them to the nearest hospital without any delay or call 911 promptly.
Causes Of Mucus in Bowel Movement :
Some of the possible causes of mucus in stool are discussed here.
- Very often if there is any change in digestive tract function it can cause diarrhea with mucus in stool. Abnormal mucus in stool is a matter of concern and needs medical help.
- Medical conditions like anal tears, fissure, fistulas and any abscess on the digestive tract can cause mucus leakage in the stool.
- Infection caused by bacteria, virus or other parasites can affect the normal functioning of the digestive system causing mucus in stool.
- Chronic problems like celiac disease, gluten sensitivity and lactose intolerance can affect the walls of the intestine causing mucus leakage with bowel.
- Colon inflammation or diverticulitis can affect the normal texture of the stool causing diarrhea with mucus in it.
- Food allergy, food poisoning and ingesting toxic substances can cause such conditions. Lactose intolerance, or fructose mal-absorption are some kinds of food allergy.
- Any type of cancer in the stomach, liver, intestine or colon can cause blood spots in the bowel.
- Serious life threatening conditions like bowel obstruction and twisting of colon can also this problem accompanied with intense stomach pain.
- Mucus in stool (in excess) can cause complications like anemia or dehydration warranting hospitalization. In case of infection, it can spread to the nearby organs causing more damage.
- Hemorrhoids in the anus can cause symptoms of persistent itching of anus, constipation, blood spots in the stool with little mucus in it. In severe cases soft mucosa can emerge out of the anus.
- Parasite problems like intestinal worms can cause excess mucus leakage in the stools. It may also cause symptoms of excess of gas formation, diarrhea and fullness of the stomach.
- Polyps are small growths on the colon or intestine of which some can become malignant. Rectal cancer and colon polyps can cause mucus in stool with other symptoms.
- For some people mucus can be seen with bowel during constipation. It can be due lack of water in the colon, side effect of medications or psychological conditions like anxiety or depression. These are induced factors causing constipation.
- Bowel obstruction or twisted colon or intussusceptions can also cause mucus in solid stool.
- In some cases bad bacteria may outgrow good bacteria in the intestine leading to overgrowth of bacteria. This condition can be caused by chronic diabetes or systemic sclerosis which can also cause mucus leak in normal stools.
- Any problem in the pancreas can affect the normal bowel movement causing mucus in bowel.
- Conditions like cystic fibrosis can generate large amounts of mucus from saliva or sweat or from the intestinal glands. Large volumes of mucus are eliminated along with mucus in such cases.
Treatment is based on the diagnosis and its cause. Most of the medical disorders can be managed through medications and support therapy. It is necessary to find out the underlying problem before giving any treatment. Anal fissure, fistulas, hemorrhoids and piles can be effectively managed with drugs and small changes in diet. Adding more fiber content will help in improving the symptoms. For people with food intolerance and allergy it is wise to stay away from such food items to prevent any complication. Though there is no cure for Crohn’s disease symptoms can be managed to large extent by diet modification and medications. Surgical intervention may be needed for some disorders like polyps or tumors in the intestine.