Bowel Category

Bowel Conditions & Symptoms

The first and most important point to remember is that everyone with a bowel problem can be helped and many can be completely cured.

If you have been diagnosed with bowel (faecal) incontinence, IBS, Colitis, Crohns, constipation or other bowel problems you can search the down menus below to find out more information about your specific condition or problem. If you have not been diagnosed by a health professional, the following questions about your symptoms should help you find the information you are looking for.

  • Do you find it difficult to have a bowel movement or have a bowel movement less than 3 times a week and have to strain
  • Excessively or do not feel completely empty? You may be constipated.
  • Do you pass watery or very loose stools more than 3 times in a day? You may have diarrhoea.
  • Do you have abdominal pain (in the lower left part of the abdomen) and a change in bowel habits (constipation or diarrhoea or alternating between both), with a mild fever and nausea and vomiting? These are symptoms of diverticular disease.
  • If you have diarrhoea, weight loss and abdominal pain, these could be signs of Crohn’s Disease.
  • Do you have bloody diarrhoea or diarrhoea containing mucus and the constant urge to go to the toilet even though nothing comes out, with or without abdominal pain? These are symptoms of Ulcerative Colitis.
  • Do you leak faeces without being aware of it? This could be bowel or faecal incontinence.

If you experience any of the following symptoms, you must see your GP as soon as possible:

  • bleeding from your back passage
  • blood in your stools (faeces), which can make them look bright red, dark red, or black
  • a change in normal bowel habits lasting three weeks or more
  • unexplained weight loss and tiredness
  • an unexplained pain or lump in your tummy

Once you have a clearer idea of what your problem may be or if you have been diagnosed you can visit our treatment section to see what your options are for managing your symptoms or condition. Information dealing with the more practical and emotional side of coping with bowel problems can be found by visiting the support section.

How to approach your GP about your bowel problems

It is never too late to get help with your bowel problems. If you would like some advice on how to approach your GP regarding your bowel problem you may find our Advice Sheet helpful. It also includes information on tests that your GP may recommend you have done. To download, please click on this link Bowel Advice Sheet.

Stoma Information

If you are looking for information about Stoma’s then you can visit our Stoma Care section which contains a host of information including:

Just Can’t Wait Card

A small convenient and well recognised card that greatly improves your ability to gain access to toilet facilities in all sorts of locations. You can purchase one here.

Faecal incontinence

Faecal incontinence or bowel incontinence is more common than you would think. Unfortunately, it is a subject which is still not as openly talked about as it should be. Bowel incontinence affects over 53 million people in Europe making it…

Haemorrhoids, Anal Tears And Fissures

Haemorrhoids (piles), anal tears and anal fissures can all result in bleeding from the anus, which can be quite alarming.  All these conditions are relatively common and in most cases any bleeding is not a cause for alarm.  However, any…

Irritable Bowel Syndrome

Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) is the name health professionals give to a series of symptoms relating to a disturbance of the large bowel that cannot be explained by any other disease. Symptoms of IBS can include: Abdominal cramps -…

Bowel cancer

Bowel cancer is also called colorectal cancer and includes large bowel cancer (colon cancer) and cancer of the back passage (rectal cancer or cancer of the rectum).