Which patient complaints suggest constipation or difficult rectal evacuation?

Updated: Mar 30, 2020
  • Author: Marc D Basson, MD, PhD, MBA, FACS; Chief Editor: BS Anand, MD  more...
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A constipated patient may be otherwise totally asymptomatic or may complain of one or more of the following:

  • Abdominal bloating

  • Pain on defecation

  • Rectal bleeding

  • Spurious diarrhea

  • Low back pain

The following also suggest that the patient may have difficult rectal evacuation:

  • Feeling of incomplete evacuation

  • Digital extraction

  • Tenesmus

  • Enema retention

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