Let's Talk About the Stool Clogging Your Child's Colon

Is your child peeing the bed? It's time to have a mature and serious discussion about stool. Constipation and stool. The New York Times, a mature and serious news organization, has helpfully enlisted pediatric urologist Steve J. Hodges to write a blog post entitled, "When Bedwetting Isn't an ‘Accident.'" Doctor?

A stool-stuffed rectum, encroaching upon the bladder, is the main cause of bedwetting, accidents, urinary frequency and other stressful toilet troubles.

I see.

I have patients with colons so overstretched that a tube must be inserted through the abdomen so stool can be flushed out.

My goodness.

One patient had her daily accident tally broadcast at preschool pickup and was suspended for "excessive" accidents. Her doctor hadn't detected the grapefruit-sized rectal stool mass aggravating her bladder.

Very troubling.

Though I knew constipation could cause wetting, I discovered clogged colons the standard way: feeling a child's abdomen and asking parents, "Does your child have hard or rare stools?"

Classic.

While operating on a 6-year-old for a condition related to wetting, I noticed her colon was engorged with stool

Tricky, is it not?

Among the first 50 patients I X-rayed, the questionnaires suggested, none were constipated. Yet films showed all 50 had severely clogged colons.

Damn.

I checked X-rays of children who'd presented for other issues and found no clogging.

(Of colons.)

Though some stool was passing through regularly, much was piling up and irritating the bladder.

Hate that.

Dr. O'Regan's studies found wetting patients were jammed with stool.

And then?

First, highly processed foods make stool firm and painful to pass. So, kids withhold.

They're just kids.

Once a child's rectum is stretched by stool, increasing dietary fiber won't suffice.

That horse has left the barn.

Stool.

[Motherlode. Photo: SusanA Secretariat/ Flickr]