Constipation: understanding mechanisms and management.

Clinics in geriatric medicine

PubMedID: 24267606

Costilla VC, Foxx-Orenstein AE. Constipation: understanding mechanisms and management. Clin Geriatr Med. 2014;30(1):107-15.
Constipation is a frequently diagnosed gastrointestinal disorder. Symptoms of constipation are common, with the greatest prevalence in the elderly. Evaluation of constipation begins with a detailed medical history and a focused anorectal examination. Diagnostic testing for constipation is not routinely recommended in the initial evaluation in the absence of alarm signs. Key self-management strategies include increased exercise, a high-fiber diet, and toilet training. High-fiber diets can worsen symptoms in some patients who have chronic constipation. Biofeedback is an effective treatment option for patients who have constipation caused by outlet obstruction defecation. A variety of medications are available to remedy constipation.