Chronic diarrhoea is defined as loose, watery stools that occur more than three times per day for a period of at least four weeks. Chronic diarrhoea can be caused by a variety of factors, including infections, food sensitivities, and autoimmune conditions. Treatment for chronic diarrhoea typically focuses on addressing the underlying cause. In some cases, over-the-counter medications may be recommended to help relieve symptoms.
Possible causes of chronic diarrhoea
-Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a common disorder that affects the large intestine. Symptoms include abdominal chronic diarrhoea pain, bloating, gas, and constipation.
IBS is a chronic condition that can be difficult to manage. There is no cure for IBS, but there are treatments that can help relieve symptoms.
Treatment for IBS may include dietary changes, stress management, medication, and probiotics. Probiotics are live microorganisms that are similar to the good bacteria that live in your gut. They can help improve digestive health and relieve symptoms of IBS.
-Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD)
Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) is a group of inflammatory conditions of the intestines. and the leading cause of Chronic Diarrhoea. The most common types of IBD are ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease.
IBD affects about 1.6 million Americans, and its incidence is increasing.
There is no known cure for IBD, but there are treatments that can help control the symptoms.
There are two main types of IBD: ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease. Ulcerative colitis is limited to the large intestine (colon), while Crohn’s disease can affect any part of the gastrointestinal tract from the mouth to the anus. IBD can also lead to complications outside of the GI tract, such as joint pain, skin rashes, and eye problems.
-Infectious diseases causing chronic diarrhoea
Chronic diarrhoea can be caused by a variety of infectious diseases, including:
-Bacterial infections: Shigella, Salmonella, Campylobacter, and escherichia coli are common causes of bacterial diarrheal infections.
-Viral infections: Rotavirus and norovirus are common causes of viral gastroenteritis, which can lead to chronic diarrhoea.
-Parasitic infections: Giardia lamblia and Cryptosporidium parvum are common parasites that can cause chronic diarrhoea.
There are many other potential causes of chronic diarrhoea, including medications, food intolerances, and other medical conditions. If you have chronic diarrhoea, it is important to see your doctor to find out the cause and get appropriate treatment. Treating the underlying infection is often the best way to resolve chronic diarrhoea. In some cases, other treatments may be necessary to manage symptoms
-Medications causing chronic Diarrhoea
There are a number of medications that can cause chronic diarrhoea as a side effect. These include:
– Antibiotics: Some antibiotics can kill off the good bacteria in your gut, leading to diarrhoea.
– Diabetes medications: Sulfonylureas, such as glipizide and glyburide, can cause diarrhoea.
– Pain medications: Opioids, such as morphine and codeine, can cause constipation. But other pain medications, such as ibuprofen and naproxen, can have the opposite effect and cause diarrhoea.
– Parkinson’s disease medications: Some drugs used to treat Parkinson’s disease, such as levodopa, can cause diarrhoea.
If you’re experiencing chronic diarrhoea, talk to your doctor about whether any of your medications could be the cause. They may be able to switch you to a different medication or adjust your dosage
-Food intolerances or allergies causing chronic diarrhoea
There are many potential food intolerances or allergies that can cause chronic diarrhoea. Some of the more common ones include:
– lactose intolerance
– gluten intolerance
– celiac disease
– soy intolerance
– peanut allergy
If you suspect that you may have a food intolerance or allergy, it is important to see your doctor for testing. Once a diagnosis is made, avoiding the offending food(s) is the only way to prevent further symptoms.
Symptoms of chronic diarrhoea
-Abdominal pain or cramping
-Greasy or oily stools
-Urgency to have a bowel movement
-Weight loss (unintentional)
If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, it is important to see your healthcare provider for an evaluation. Chronic diarrhoea can sometimes be a sign of a serious condition, so it is important to rule out any potentially dangerous causes.
Prevention of chronic diarrhoea
The best way to prevent chronic diarrhoea is to follow a healthy lifestyle and eat a nutritious diet. Avoiding processed foods, sugary drinks, and refined carbs can help reduce your risk of developing chronic diarrhoea. Other lifestyle changes that can help include exercising regularly, staying hydrated, and managing stress levels. If you have a medical condition that puts you at risk for chronic diarrhoea, working with a healthcare team to manage your condition can also help prevent the condition from developing. In some cases, medications may be necessary to prevent chronic diarrhoea.