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Forum Name: Gastroenterology Topics

Question: Chronic constipation - fatigue, hair loss, and oily skin


 Eierannach - Mon Mar 26, 2007 5:20 pm

Hello! I am a 22 year old female and in October 2006 had my gallbladder removed, a resection/rectopexy for prolapse and an enterocele repair. Two weeks postop an MRI found several small clots in my portal vein and now I am on a six-month regiment of coumadin. I also have gastroparesis and the surgeons found my peritoneal connective tissue to be "pediatric" A blood test also found elevated cardiolipin antibodies but normal ANA levels and a normal sed rate. I have normal thyroid function as well a normal colonoscopy and normal sitzmarker study. My small bowel transit was only slightly slow. Biopsy of my sigmoid colon was normal.
I have had chronic constipation since chjildhood despite a healthy fibrous diet and good hydration. I take reglan, zelnorm, miralax and milk of magnesia but still have trouble moving my bowels, and incur severe rectal pain when i attempt to do so. I have reprolapsed as well. I am about to undergo biofeedback therapy but my surgeon mentioned eventually making the decision of having a colostomy.
other symptoms include severe fatigue, hair loss, and excessively oily skin which is a recent development. I have chronic abdominal pain, and occasional dizziness.
I apologize for the length, but am wondering: am I missing a potential diagnosis? Thank you so much for your time!
 Dr. Chan Lowe - Wed Mar 28, 2007 10:29 pm

User avatar Had you not said that your thyroid was normal I would have been very suspicious of hypothyroidism. This would explain almost all if not all of your symptoms very well. You may want to have your levels repeated to confirm this (TSH and free T4).

Have you had a suction rectal biopsy to look for short segment hirshsprung's disease? This is a somewhat common cause of severe constipation problems that are persistent.

I would also recommend that celiac disease be tested for.

Before you have a colostomy I would recommend that you at least be sure that these three things have been completely ruled out as they are treatable. I would recommend getting the opinion of your surgeon and GI doctor to be able to make a fully informed decision about this.

Best wishes.

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