ZocdocAnswersWhat causes pain moving through the GI tract, plus painful bowel movements?

Question

What causes pain moving through the GI tract, plus painful bowel movements?

A few times a month I get these episoides where i have a sharp pain that moves from the top of my GI track to the lower end. Then I get the sudden urge to have a bowel movement. It is very painful. The stool starts off solid then turns into a liquid diarehia. After my skin is clammy, I am left dizzy lightheaded and feeling tired. Then the pain remains in my lower abdomin for a few hours to a day.

Answer

I am sorry that you are having these issues! I strongly recommend that you see a doctor about this, if you have not done so already, because recurrent abdominal pain and diarrhea can occasionally be a sign of a serious medical problem requiring treatment. You can start by seeing either your primary care doctor or a gastroenterologist. When you see your doctor, make sure to mention any specific additional symptoms which might help to narrow down the possibilities, especially fevers, joint pain or swelling, skin rashes, weight loss, blood in your bowel movements, or associations with particular foods. Your doctor will most likely want to perform some blood work and potentially also some stool tests to help figure out what is going on. If all of this workup turns out normal, then you may be suffering from a condition called irritable bowel syndrome, which is characterized by intermittent episodes of abdominal cramping associated with either constipation or diarrhea. Irritable bowel syndrome is strongly associated with increased levels of stress, and it is generally treated by paying attention to lifestyle factors like diet, exercise, and sleep. Sometimes, however, medications are also used to alleviate or prevent recurrence of the symptoms. Talk to your doctor as soon as you can!

This answer is for general informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice.

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