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Thread: Managing Loose Stool After Gall Bladder Surgery

  1. #1

    Managing Loose Stool After Gall Bladder Surgery

    My gall bladder was removed laproscopically last July. After ten months without any after-effects from the surgery, I've gone almost overnight from decades of my stool being very hard to it being so soft/loose as a result of excess bile that even the narcotic pain meds and anti-cholinergic I take aren't enough to firm it up.

    As try to figure out a bowel program that works with this new development, does anyone have suggestions beyond the standard changes to diet and loperimide [Imodium] recommended to post-choly ABs?

    I know psyllium-based fiber will bulk up soft stool. SCI-Nurse, is there a reason that's not mentioned anywhere as an alternative to Imodium?
    Last edited by thehipcrip; 04-18-2012 at 07:39 PM. Reason: ''are'' has a different meaning than ''aren't''
    It is easier to find men who will volunteer to die, than to find those who are willing to endure pain with patience.

    ~Julius Caesar


  2. #2
    Actually, I don't find that psyillium works very well for firming up stools. It tends to make the stool rubbery (if taken in large doses) which can make it very difficult to evacuate. Instead, I would recommend that you look at a combination of probiotics and calcium polycarbophil (Fibercon). It works differently than psyllium. You can take up to 6 tablets daily and adjust the amount you take to your individual needs. You may also need the Imodium, but with Fibercon, you will need less.

    You may also want to talk to your physician about the use of cholestyramine or proton pump inhibitors (such as pantoprazole) to slow your digestion, which will generally firm up your stool.

    (KLD)

  3. #3
    Thank you so much, KLD. Fibercon it is -- rubbery stool sounds like a good working title for an SCI/D horror movie.

    I'm pleased and surprised probiotics will help. They were one of the first options that came to mind, but since the cause of the problem is excess bile rather than intestinal flora that's out of whack I didn't think they'd do much.

    Can anyone recommend non-yogurt based pre- and/or probiotics to try? I'm having a hard time tolerating even low-fat dairy. I've also tried Align, which made no noticeable difference, so I'm wary of the costly ''one pill fits all'' probiotics sold by the same companies that make other well-known OTC digestive medications.
    It is easier to find men who will volunteer to die, than to find those who are willing to endure pain with patience.

    ~Julius Caesar


  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by thehipcrip View Post
    My gall bladder was removed laproscopically last July. After ten months without any after-effects from the surgery, I've gone almost overnight from decades of my stool being very hard to it being so soft/loose as a result of excess bile that even the narcotic pain meds and anti-cholinergic I take aren't enough to firm it up.
    I believe my very clever friend Dark Eyed Daisy solved the mystery behind the sudden bowel changes:

    Oxybutynin ER.

    I started taking it about a week before the changes began but because it typically causes constipation, it didn't occur to me that it might be the cause of my new problem. Dark Eyed Daisy, however, checked it out and found that the problems I was having were all side effects of the drug. I stopped taking it two days ago and all of the problems are either gone or in the process of resolving themselves. Thank you, Daisy!
    It is easier to find men who will volunteer to die, than to find those who are willing to endure pain with patience.

    ~Julius Caesar


  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by SCI-Nurse View Post
    Actually, I don't find that psyillium works very well for firming up stools. It tends to make the stool rubbery (if taken in large doses) which can make it very difficult to evacuate. Instead, I would recommend that you look at a combination of probiotics and calcium polycarbophil (Fibercon). It works differently than psyllium. You can take up to 6 tablets daily and adjust the amount you take to your individual needs. You may also need the Imodium, but with Fibercon, you will need less.

    You may also want to talk to your physician about the use of cholestyramine or proton pump inhibitors (such as pantoprazole) to slow your digestion, which will generally firm up your stool.

    (KLD)
    The cholestyramine solved the problem for me!

  6. #6
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    You are welcome Hip Crip

    I have been on Cholesterymine since my gallbladder removal also.
    T12-L2; Burst fracture L1: Incomplete walking with AFO's and cane since 1989

    My goal in life is to be as good of a person my dog already thinks I am. ~Author Unknown

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