Signs and Symptoms of Bowel Obstruction

Symptoms of Bowel Obstruction

What is bowel obstruction?

Bowel obstruction is a change in bowel movements due to obstruction or arrest of a passage of waste through the intestine. This condition is seen in people who are recovering from abdominal surgery.

The food, gastric acids, fatty acids and all other intakes start to accumulate near the blockage.

Due to blockage if the internal pressure becomes too high then it may lead to rupture of intestine which is too serious and adds the complications.

Bowel Obstruction Symptoms – 7 symptoms that may be the sign..!

In general, a patient may feel some pain when the colon tries to push the waste contents out through the obstructed area. Here we are going to mention seven most common intestine obstruction symptoms that you need to pay attention to:

#1 Sudden onset of abdominal pain

Pain in the abdominal region may arise suddenly and is the vague symptom of many medical problems. The patient may feel this pain ranging from severe to mild around the belly area or below it. The patient may also feel severe cramps around that region that may come and go.

Abdominal pain is considered to be one of the primary reasons that relate to bowel obstruction. The majority of this pain occur in the lower abdominal region.

#2 Nausea

There is a loss of appetite when there is the improper movement of food down through the intestines. At times, you may feel full, and there will be no more desire to consume more food even if you have taken a small amount of food.  Due to this reason, you can become easily nauseated with a small intake of food also due to a slight movement of food and other substances down.

The waste material that presents there for a long time will produce a lot of gasses as a byproduct sitting there undigested. It will create a havoc of gasses inside the intestines due to which you may get nauseated.

#3 Vomiting

The improper digestion of food may lead to antiperistalsis.  Vomiting is an indication that the condition of bowel obstruction is getting worse. The food you each when is not digested and cannot pass down the partial bowel obstruction, then antiperistalsis happen. That is the food back up through your digestive tract.

#4 Constipation

Prolonged illness is an indication of partial bowel obstruction on your body. This condition occurs when the food you eat is unable to pass the blockage and pass outside the body through the intestines. Some substances pass the blockage somehow and come out of the body in the form of liquid stools.

#5 Diarrhea

The bowel obstruction doesn’t let the food to pass outside the body due to which it gets accumulated in the intestines only for a long time.  These substances make the trip out of the intestines but in the form of pure liquid stool. The liquid stool indicates that you are having diarrhea.

#6 Swollen Abdomen

The intestinal contents start backing up when there is no bowel movement. The contents get accumulated in the intestines for a long period which adversely affects the abdominal region of your body.

Due to this in some cases, patients may suffer from a swollen abdomen.

#7 Decreased appetite

There is a loss of appetite because your stomach is full with the previous contents that were unable to pass out of the body due to bowel obstruction.

When to see the Doctor?

If you can see these symptoms for a longer time as long as a week, you need to immediately consult your doctor.

If you are experiencing a constant abdominal pain and there is vomiting also then the issue is serious.

The doctor can diagnose any blockage with the help of abdominal X-ray. If you ignore these symptoms, then the bowel obstruction may prove fatal.

It can infect the abdominal region which will further require a remedial action.

Diagnosing bowel obstruction

`The diagnosis of bowel obstruction is carried out in 5 steps which are shown in brief below:

  1. You need to give a detailed explanation of all the symptoms you are experiencing.
  2. Mention about your medical history.
  3. The doctor will perform physical examination of the parts of your abdomen
  4. Doctor may further perform CT scan or X-ray
  5. If the physician suspects a larger obstruction in the intestine, you may have to under colonoscopy.


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