About Constipation: Symptoms and Complications

Symptoms of constipation can include:

  • infrequent bowel movements
  • hard, dry stools that are difficult to pass
  • sensation that the bowels haven't completely emptied
  • some bleeding as a result of straining
  • bloating of the abdomen, possibly a "rumbling" noise
  • pain or pressure in the belly
  • indigestion
  • loss of appetite
  • gas

Constipation can cause complications. Very large, hard stools can stretch the anus, tearing the skin. These anal fissures can be very painful. Occasionally, a really tough bowel movement causes rectal prolapse, in which a small section of intestinal lining pokes out of the anus and has to be pushed back in.

Learn more about Gastrointestinal