Digestion Q&A by Dr. Lee

Can Crohn's disease be manifested with constipation and flatulence (farting)? My daughter has been on Zelnorm (tegaserod) for constipation for months and it is not working and she experiences extreme bloating, abdominal pain, and constipation with some diarrhea and is miserable.

Medical Author Dr. Dennis Lee
Medical Author Dr. Jay W. Marks

Answer:

Extreme bloating, abdominal pain, and constipation with some diarrhea are unusual symptoms of Crohn's disease.

Common symptoms of Crohn's disease include abdominal pain, diarrhea, and weight loss. Less common symptoms include poor appetite, fever, night sweats, rectal pain, and rectal bleeding. Some patients with Crohn's disease also develop symptoms outside of the gastrointestinal tract; these symptoms include arthritis, skin rash, and inflammation of the iris of the eye. Furthermore, patients with Crohn's disease also can develop symptoms related to small bowel bacterial overgrowth. These symptoms include excess gas, abdominal bloating, and sometimes worsening of diarrhea.

If your daughter is not responding to the medications prescribed by her doctor, it is important to let the doctor know, so that he/she can continue efforts to arrive at a firm diagnosis and plan of treatment.

Thank you for your question.


Last Editorial Review: 11/16/2010



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