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Chronic Diarrhoea

Chronic diarrhea refers to a condition where an individual experiences frequent and persistent episodes of loose, watery stools that last for more than four weeks. It is a symptom of an underlying health issue rather than a standalone condition.

Chronic diarrhea can be caused by various factors, and it's essential to identify the underlying cause to provide appropriate treatment.

COMMON CAUSES FOR CHRONIC DIARRHOEA INCLUDE:

  • Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD): Conditions like Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis can lead to chronic inflammation in the digestive tract, resulting in diarrhea.

  • Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth (SIBO): SIBO is a condition characterised by an excessive growth of bacteria in the small intestine, where there should be relatively low bacterial counts compared to the large intestine. When these bacteria multiply in the small intestine, they can ferment carbohydrates and produce gas and other byproducts, leading to various gastrointestinal symptoms, including chronic diarrhoea.

  • Malabsorption Disorders: Conditions like celiac disease and lactose intolerance can lead to chronic diarrhoea due to the body's inability to properly absorb certain nutrients.

  • Bile Acid Malabsorption (BAM): Bile Acid Malabsorption (BAM) is a condition where the absorption of bile acids in the intestine is impaired. Bile acids, produced by the liver and stored in the gallbladder, aid in digesting and absorbing fats in the small intestine. In BAM, most bile acids are not adequately reabsorbed in the terminal ileum and continue to the colon, leading to chronic diarrhea.

  • Chronic Infections: Persistent bacterial, viral, or parasitic infections in the digestive system can cause chronic diarrhea.

  • Food Allergies or Sensitivities: Some individuals may experience chronic diarrhea due to allergies or sensitivities to certain foods.

  • Histamine Intolerance: Histamine can cause increased gut motility and secretion, leading to diarrhea in some individuals.

  • Medication Side Effects: Some medications can cause diarrhea as a side effect, especially if used for an extended period.

  • Hormonal Disorders: Hormonal imbalances, such as hyperthyroidism, can affect bowel movements and lead to chronic diarrhea.

  • Chronic Stress: Prolonged stress or anxiety can affect the gastrointestinal system and lead to chronic diarrhea in some individuals.

  • Gastrointestinal Disorders: Conditions like chronic pancreatitis or inflammatory conditions of the gut can cause chronic diarrhea.

  • Other Systemic Conditions: Chronic diarrhea can also be a symptom of certain systemic diseases, such as diabetes or kidney disease.

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How We Can Help You

Our approach to investigating chronic diarrhea involves looking beyond just the symptoms and seeking to identify the underlying root causes contributing to the condition. We focus on understanding the interconnectedness of various body systems and how they influence overall health.

Here are the key steps that may be involved to investigate chronic diarrhea:

  • Detailed Medical History: We take a comprehensive medical history, including past medical conditions, surgeries, medications, diet, lifestyle habits, and any other relevant factors.

  • Symptom Assessment: A thorough assessment of the specific symptoms, frequency, and duration of diarrhea will be conducted to gain insights into the nature of the condition.

  • Testing: We often use specialised laboratory tests to investigate various aspects of health, including gut function, nutrient levels, immune system markers, inflammation, food sensitivities, and potential imbalances in gut flora.

  • Dietary Analysis: We look the diet to assess for possible dietary triggers, intolerances, or deficiencies that could be contributing to chronic diarrhea.

  • Gut Health Assessment: This may involve tests to check for gut dysbiosis, intestinal permeability (leaky gut), or Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth (SIBO).

  • Hormonal Evaluation: Hormonal imbalances, such as thyroid disorders or adrenal dysfunction, may be investigated as they can affect gastrointestinal function.

  • Stress and Lifestyle Assessment: Chronic stress and lifestyle factors can impact gut health and contribute to chronic diarrhea. Evaluating stress levels, sleep patterns, and exercise habits may be important.

It's important to note that our approach is patient-centered, and the approach may vary for each individual based on their unique health profile.

The goal is to identify and address the root causes, rather than merely managing symptoms, to promote long-term health and well-being. 

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