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Diarrhea

Your diarrhea does not have distinctive features that help to suggest a diagnosis. Because your diarrhea is chronic, it is important for you to discuss your symptoms with a doctor so some basic blood tests or stool tests can be obtained. Blood tests can detect problems such as an overactive thyroid or diabetes, two medical conditions that can result in diarrhea.

If your stools are very watery, adding an over-the-counter fiber supplement such as methylcellulose (Citrucel) or psyllium (Metamucil) may help to make your stools thicker in texture and more manageable. These fiber supplements are forms of "soluble fiber," fiber that combines with water to form a soft gel. Other types of fiber (including the insoluble fiber found in vegetables and grain husks in high fiber diets) may make your diarrhea worse, and should be included in your diet in only modest amounts.

Fruit juices contain a concentrated amount of fructose, and this natural sugar can contribute to diarrhea. You may want to limit the amount of fruit or fruit juice in your diet if your symptoms are very bothersome.

Click here for general information about diarrhea.


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