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Constipation followed by diarrhea :(

Just wondered if anyone else suffers from this.

Usually my main IBS issue is diarrhea, often induced by stress and anxiety. But recently (at times of relative routine and calm) I'm suffering from constipation too. I can go 3-4 days without a movement. I don't feel any pain, although towards the end I do feel a little sluggish. Then eventually I'll have a fairly large (sorry) but normal bowel movement and feel much better. But I've noticed that shortly afterwards I'll get diarrhea too. It's like once the floodgates have opened there's no stopping it! Today for example...I hadn't been to the loo since Wednesday and last night ate a big, fried fish and chips supper plus quite a lot of coffee so I was expecting a movement today. Had one but then had about 3 bouts of urgent D soon after. The thing is we were going out so I had to take an immodium and now I'll probably be blocked up again until next week! So it's like a vicious cycle. Wish I'd not taken the immodium as I need to get back into a regular pattern but I panicked as we were due at a party. 

Anyone else suffer like this? What causes it? Is it literally just a back up of everything in the bowel? Once again I'm thinking scary things like bowel cancer :( 

4 Replies

I usually had this type of bowel movement but have now found a way to even it out a bit and seldom have bouts of real diarrhoea although occasionally a bit loose.  If I have looseness I take only half an Imodium otherwise get too binged up again.  I have been on Fodmaps for three years now plus lactose fre and gluten free.  I can now actually eat a little gluten and the occasional dairy but I save those for when I really can't get anything else or occasionally have a craving for ice cream!


Yes, I recognise that, even worse. In my case I think it was caused by medication, so I would have a week or more of severe constipation followed by cramps and diarrhoea, I used to count on two hours in the loo, nightmare!

Since the (heart) meds were stopped I have loose bowels every morning which is sort of an improvement unless I have to go out. Still working on that one but mebeverine the night before seems to be helpful.

Only thing I can suggest is to use a suppository rather than a laxative if you miss a day so you don't get the build up, that sort of helped me.

Having said that, a change in bowel habit should be reported to your doc if there is no obvious reason. Mine did ask if my symptoms were the usual IBS ones and offered to send me for tests but I became ill with a bowel abscess soon after so the reason became clear.


Hi Littlemissbe 

I to suffer with sort of IBS , and I went on Lepicol and found it worked really well for about 3months ,then all of a sudden it went back to how I was in the first place , but it's worth a try who knows it may work longer for you , as you must know us with IBS are all so different  , but I do think it's worth a try , good luck sunnycot


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