To maintain a moist and lubricated inner lining of your colon, mucus is naturally produced. The body naturally produces mucus to help stools move through the digestive system. Occasionally, the mucus sticks to your stool. You don't need to worry about the occasional mucus you see when wiping or in the toilet bowl.
You should take special care if you notice mucus appearing in your poop more frequently or if you notice that the mucus is accompanied by other symptoms such as diarrhoea, abdominal pain, and blood in your stool. There could be a serious underlying cause of the mucus in your stool.
There are several reasons why you might have mucus in your stool. We'll explore some of the most common causes, symptoms, and possible ways you can treat this condition.
To maintain a person's gut health, mucus and mucus barriers play an important role. To maintain a stable environment in the gut, mucus can guard against bacteria, digestion enzymes, acids, and other toxins. Food moves more smoothly through the intestines with the help of this natural lubricant.
You shouldn't worry if you have mucus in your stool, as small amounts are normal. However, large amounts may indicate that you have an infection or another underlying problem.
Other symptoms affecting the digestive tract may be associated with mucus in the stool, such as:
To facilitate the passage of digested food and waste through the digestive tract, mucus is normally produced. Poop may contain abnormal amounts of mucus due to various medical conditions. Among these conditions are the following:
Mucus in the stool can also be caused by infections in the gastrointestinal tract (GI). An infection can be caused by bacteria, viruses, or parasites invading the body. Parasitic infections can cause bloody diarrhoea with mucus.
Other symptoms include:
Colorectal cancer often does not present symptoms until it has spread to other body parts. Screenings with colonoscopies are essential since this cancer grows slowly. It is possible to remove precancerous polyps during a colonoscopy before they become cancerous.
In addition to changes in bowel patterns and habits lasting longer than a few days, colon cancer can cause the following signs and symptoms:
The gastrointestinal tract is often filled with whitish mucus caused by IBS.
More often than not, diarrhoea-predominant IBS or IBS-A (alternating type) is associated with this condition.
There are two types of proctitis: short-term and long-term. One of the most common symptoms is going to the bathroom frequently and urgently. Having mucus or pus discharge from the rectum is also a symptom of proctitis, which should be reported to a healthcare provider.
There are also the following symptoms:
An inflammatory process in the digestive tract causes Crohn's disease (the digestive route between the mouth and the anus). It's an inflammatory bowel disease. The digestive tract has a thicker mucus layer, so excess mucus is secreted in stools. It is possible. However, that mucus in the stool may decrease during severe flare-ups because the body produces less mucus.
Other symptoms of Crohn’s include:
IBD can also be classified as UC. Immune system overreaction causes it. Sometimes it flares up, and sometimes it is inactive. Ulcers develop when the large intestine's mucous membrane is inflamed during flare-ups. There is a possibility of bleeds, pus, and mucus from these ulcers—the likelihood of mucus in the poop increases during flare-ups.
Other symptoms of UC include:
Inflammation and irritation can cause mucus in the intestines due to bacterial infection.
There are several types of bacterial infections commonly found in the intestines, including:
Fistulas between the anus and the skin are infected tunnels. An abscess can cause them to form. There is a possibility that they can cause the anal area to drain foul-smelling mucus.
A person with cystic fibrosis has abnormal mucus, sweat, and digestive juice production cells. There is usually a thin, slippery consistency to these secreted fluids. The secretions of people with CF become sticky and thick due to a defective gene. The secretions plug them up rather than lubricating tubes, ducts, and passageways.
A condition like this can result in excessive mucus in poop.
It occurs when your bowels are incapable of absorbing certain nutrients. It is believed that celiac disease and lactose intolerance are associated with malabsorption.
Celiac disease (gluten intolerance) is much rarer than wheat sensitivities. Wheat, rye, and barley contain gluten, a protein that causes celiac disease. Minor intestine damage, inflammation, and immune reactions are caused by gluten consumption.
There may be an increase in mucus in stool as a result.
Lactose intolerance affects nearly 70% of the world's population. Lactose, a component of milk, cannot be digested by those who lack the enzyme lactase in their intestines. Lactose intolerance is the result of this condition. Bacteria process lactose from the intestinal flora in the large intestine since the body cannot break down lactose. The results of this processing include nausea, diarrhoea, abdominal cramps, bloating, and abdominal cramps.
Additionally, mucus can increase in the intestine, resulting in bowel movements.
Gastroenteritis, or gastrointestinal tract inflammation, is caused by rotaviruses or noroviruses. In most cases, gastroenteritis caused by viruses will heal within a few days.
It causes mucus in the stool, nausea, diarrhoea, and a feeling of sickness for people with GI infections. Drink fluids and stay hydrated at all times.
Depending on the diagnosis, mucus in the stool can be treated differently.
Solving the issue with lifestyle changes in mild cases may be possible. These include:
Irritable bowel syndrome, Crohn's disease, cystic fibrosis, ulcerative colitis, and cystic fibrosis may require prescription medications.
The following symptoms may require medical attention if you experience them:
You should see a doctor immediately if you see mucus in your stool regularly, even if there are no other symptoms.
With Mobi Doctor, you have access to online urgent care.