Obstipation – Causes, Symptoms And Treatment

ObstipationObstipation is a disease in which an individual finds it difficult to pass stool. In general obstipation can also be considered as severe or chronic constipation. In this disease, the intestine is completely full and it is difficult to empty it. Obstipation is a severe disease that causes a lot of discomfort in the abdomen. In constipation, people find it difficult to pass their stools but eventually the problem is rectified. In obstipation, the situation becomes very bad as the stool that remains in the colon gets hard making it difficult to pass out of the body.

Obstipation vs Constipation

Constipation is a condition in which an individual fails to have a regular bowel movement. He has three or less bowel movement in a week. On the other hand, obstipation is a severe regular constipation. Once a patient gets to know that he is suffering from obstipation then he must try to resolve this issue, otherwise this can lead to infection as well. Change in the diet is the only way through which this disease can be treated. Even if a change in diet has no impact on the disease then the patient is left with no other choice than getting an operation done. There is no particular diagnosis for this disease, but obstipation can be seen through abdominal CT scans and laparoscopy.



There is no particular diagnosis of this disease. The diagnosis for this disease includes identifying the condition of the patient. Those who suffer from this condition of chronic constipation feel bloated. This leads to a sense of discomfort in the abdomen of the patient. This symptom must be taken into consideration before things get out of the control. If no step is taken regarding this situation then it might turn into a fatal condition. If the intestine is not cleared completely then it might lead to accumulation of the toxins that would lead to infection, inflammation, and even bad body odor. If the inflammation continues, it may lead to several other issues like fever and it may cause interruption in the blood supply to the intestines, which can lead to cramps. The intestines would also fail to absorb water and other nutrients. Dehydration and vomiting are other physical symptoms that are related to this disease. People usually get confused between obstipation and constipation. There should be clarity on the difference between obstipation and constipation. Intestinal distention can also take place in those who suffer from obstipation. Intestinal distention affects the intestinal contraction and relaxation of muscles and the secretory function

Causes of Obstipation

Those who suffer from obstipation must try to find out the reason behind the occurrence of this disease. The main causes behind the occurrence of obstipation are birthing a defect, primary and secondary causes.

  • The primary or functional constipation, which is caused by medical issue or by use of certain drugs.
  • Low liquid intake is another reason for this disease to occur.
  • Low fiber intake.
  • Intestines fold which causes obstruction.
  • There are certain drugs which if consumed causes severe constipation or obstipation. Antidepressants and aluminium antacids are some of these drugs.
  • Some metabolic and endocrine related problems also lead to obstipation. These problems include hypothyroidism, hypokalemia, and cystic fibrosis.
  • Structural abnormalities like spinal cord lesions and pelvic floor dysfunction causes this disease.
  • Functional abnormalities like animus and Hirschsprung’s disease also lead to obstipation
  • Voluntarily holding stool on a regular basis might lead to obstipation.
  • Large lump of dry, hard, and bulk stool that is stuck due to long-term constipation.
  • Fiber like strand formation in the peritoneum.
  • Anal fissure.
  • Intestinal Artesia.

Treatment of Obstipation

There is no rigid treatment procedure for this disease. Once a patient is diagnosed to have this disease then there must be a change in his diet. The person who is suffering from this disease must try to have high fiber food items like corn grain and bran. The person must also increase the intake of water supply. The patient must try to have at least 3 liters of water every day. One should try to have only herbal tea, plain water, and vegetable stock, as these do not undergo metabolic processing. One should try to avoid fruit juices, coffee, alcohol, and milk as these needs to go through metabolic processing.

Exercise is also advised to those who face the issue of obstipation. Exercise plays a vital role in improving the circulation of oxygen to the intestine, which also helps in improving peristalsis. Intake of certain dry fruits is also beneficial for those who are suffering from obstipation. Walnut is one of the dry fruits that laxative. Laxatives such as lactulose are also used. Those who suffer from severe dehydration are given intravenous fluids which helps in restoring the electrolytic balance of the body. Even if after following all these things, the patient still faces many problems then laparoscopic surgery is advised to him. For treatment of this disease, it is important to know the reason because of which this severe constipation is occurring. Once the reason is known, something could be done about it.


Nothing much can be done in preventing an individual from severe constipation or obstipation. If one feels the symptoms of constipation then they should try to make changes in their diet as soon as possible. They should have a diet that is rich in fiber. They must try to have fiber rich items like bran. One should also try to increase the intake of plain water and herbal tea, as they do not require going through metabolic processing. They should try to avoid drinks that require going through metabolic processing. These drinks include alcohol and fruit juices. Those who feel the issue of constipation must try to do exercise on a regular basis. One can also take coffee on a regular basis. Coffee is a stimulant and it helps one in regular bowel movements. If one keeps their diet in control and notice all the basic symptoms then obstipation can be brought under control without much difficulty.

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