Mudbutt: What causes it and how can I get rid of it?
September 1, 2005 9:11 AM   Subscribe

Mudbutt: What causes it and how can I get rid of it?

The symptoms include: Having a small bowel movement 5-6 times a day, but never feeling 'finished'. Never being able to wipe completely clean. This problem is reoccurring and can last for days if not weeks, with sometimes bouts of diarrhea in-between.

I have seen a doctor and there is no sign of IBS or any other digestive problems, however, I have been diagnosed with GERD and take OTC acid reducers to control the GERD symptoms. I also take OTC allergy medicine (Claritin) and prescription anxiety medicine (BuSpar).

Is diet the key? I do not eat red meat, chicken, or pork. I occasionally eat fish or shellfish, but not often, and it's usually fried. I try to stay away from eating a lot of cheese because of the fat content but I do drink light soy milk and eat light yoghurt. I also try to stay away from caffeine as it upsets my stomach.

I use a lot of meatless protein and black bean burgers and crumbles in cooking. I also am a fan of pasta, vegetarian mexican food, spinach, onions, tomatoes, etc. I don't eat a lot of straight salad or plain vegetables. It's difficult to get fresh produce and fruit where I live because of our poor growing season. I do drink 2-3 liters of water a day and am not dehydrated.

What about fiber therapy? Can I use OTC fiber capsules to help get on a schedule of once a day? Will I ever stop being a walking joke from Chappelle's Show?
posted by anonymous to Health & Fitness (12 answers total)
Your doctor didn't have any advice? Sounds to me like you just need more fiber. You don't mention whole grains being part of your diet...brown rice, wild rice, quinoa, barley, bulghur, oatmeal. Sounds like these would fit into your mostly vegetarian diet well, and they store well.
posted by desuetude at 10:13 AM on September 1, 2005

The claritin might be your problem... I've had that situation when I was on allergy drugs for a while. You might try adding a lot more wheat fiber to your diet... usually a box of Triscuts over a couple of days or so cleared things up for me.
posted by SpecialK at 10:15 AM on September 1, 2005

Disclaimer: I Am Not A Doctor! Take what I say with a salt mine if you feel like it!

Seconding the fiber suggestion. You don't mention any real fibrous foods at all in your diet!

I would try a fiber-therapy regimen, any way you can get it... If you're like me, this will be in the form of something you can easily measure. For example, Citrucel offers not just the orange stuff, but a clear version, and a chocolate FiberShake. The trick is actually taking it every day.

Good luck!
posted by chota at 10:20 AM on September 1, 2005

I totally agree on the fiber. I eat these babies like candy, and love them. (I eat 4 a day.)
posted by pornucopia at 11:11 AM on September 1, 2005

You can get fiber from actual natural sources as well you know. Whole wheat cous-cous, All-Bran cereal, any beans. MM. good eatin.
posted by glenwood at 11:35 AM on September 1, 2005

I've had this problem.

I found the insoluble fiber in Metamucil worked very well, but the soluble fiber in CITRUCEL did not.
posted by y6y6y6 at 11:40 AM on September 1, 2005

Fiber, and get your thyroid levels checked - it contributes to both stress/anxiety levels, and stomach and digestion problems. Stress/anxiety also contribute to digestion issues. Also, what kind of yoghurt do you eat? If it's the flavoured-overloaded-sugar kind, it's not doing you any good. Finally, fruits and veggies don't have to be the typical lettuce-cuke-tropical citrus variety. There are always local fruits and veggies, but it does take figuring out what form it takes - tomato, pumpkin, root veggies, hardier leafy greens, frozen peas, etc.
posted by fionab at 11:43 AM on September 1, 2005

Fiber supplements are helpful (I take the Target brand version of Metamucil capsules), but don't rely on them alone to boost your fiber intake. Your digestive system needs plenty (20-35 grams a day) of both soluble and insoluble fiber -- more info here from the Mayo Clinic website.)
posted by scody at 1:38 PM on September 1, 2005

Someone with a similar problem uses baby wipes to avoid irritating his tender skin.
posted by Cranberry at 1:40 PM on September 1, 2005

I can't believe I am posting about this, but here goes.

I get the unfinished feeling every once and a while, and it usually means just that, I am not finished. I have a BM, wipe, and wipe, and wipe and the TP is never clean. Sometimes I can sit down and squeeze more out, sometimes not. Sure enough about an hour later I start to feel itchy and go back to the bathroom and things are still dirty down there, and then squeeze a bit more out and then things are OK, except I am sore from all the wiping. The flushable adult wipes they sell now are great for this. As far as the comments about adding more fiber to your diet, I disagree. I have noticed the more meat, cheese, bananas, etc. I eat, the firmer my BM's are, which reduces the occurrence of this dramatically.
posted by internal at 3:08 PM on September 1, 2005

I guess I'm wondering what you mean by no sign of IBS, as I find your description highly suspicious of it, but you've left a lot out of your description. There are several basic questions I might like to know, including whether you have any abdominal pain as well, if such pain is relieved with bowel movements, and if you notice any mucous in your stool/diarrhea. Alternating bouts of diarrhea and constipation is one of the hallmarks of this disease. It would have also helped to know your gender, age, and family history. There's no way to diagnose you over the internet of course, but I would make the following recommendations:

1) Fiber, generally speaking is never a bad idea, and is something most everybody needs more of. But ultimately it may not solve your problem.

2) This is a problem I would not sit on, if you'll pardon the bad choice of words. You don't specify much of what your doctor has done so far to work you up, but if they've done a lot of tests, and everything they've checked so far is normal, that's even more reason to suspect IBS. I would definitely continue to follow up with a doctor until you have some more answers. It's hard to get into the specifics of all the things worth checking in your case, but ultimately the main diagnostic tool in most cases of unresolved bowel issues like yours may be direct imaging by colonoscopy. If you haven't been scoped yet, you probably should be.
posted by drpynchon at 6:40 PM on September 1, 2005

Among other benefits, my... uh... BMs got more regular when I started the South Beach Diet. YMMV
posted by Doohickie at 2:08 AM on September 2, 2005

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