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Movicol - the ups and downs

(5 Posts)
nozzles Wed 15-Jul-09 22:40:26

My DS has suffered from chronic constipation since weaning and is now 4.5 and starting school in Sept. She has been rejected by doctors continually since 6 months. Oh try figs, try goats milk not cows milk, try more fruit and veg (when she eats so much of it already) try lactulose but it's not to be used regularly (and give her pain in her stomach!). She slept all the time, was underweight, had no appetite, screamed in pain every four days when her bottom tore. We complained officially at the age of 4 years and finally got referred. She has chronic constipation they say. Really!!!!

We give her Movicol and she becomes a normal energetic child and finally asks for the loo instead of being frightened of it. But and it's a big but, she doesn't always feel some of the poo and she soils herself some days. She is starting school and we are concerned because she gets little or no notice and she can't open the school toilet door because it is too heavy and she is still building up her strength.

Movicol is great but how to move onwards at school is a problem as the school aren't prepared to help her with accidents. How will this affect her confidence in class. Because the darling NHS left her 4 years her bowel will take possibly years to shrink back to its normal size as it has been used to holding lots so Movicol is here for some time.

Hangingbellyofbabylon Thu 16-Jul-09 17:00:02

My dd is nearly 5 and has chronic constipation - also a problems since weaning and also not 'officially' diagnosed till she was 4. She has a regime of 7.5ml of senna (to push it out) and half a sachet of movicol (to soften). This generally works well and she most usually poos after dinner. However, the slightest thing seems to upset the balance, she already eats tons of fruit and veg and drinks well too but sometimes out of the blue she seems to have what she calls 'fast poo' where she gets no notice that it's coming. I never know if it's something she's eaten or something else. We also find that any change of routine is really bad, she got totally bunged up on holiday this year and we ended up having to increase does with the resulting explosive results blush.

We are very lucky as the school have never complained about helping her after her accidents; including one memorable occasion when they had to actually put her in the school shower! I always have a change of clothes and they know that she has to go to the loo at short notice. (although she has had several accidents when dinner ladies/different teachers haven't let her go). The one problems we've come up against is that on days where things are really bad and she's is having accidents all day long I have had to keep her off school. This has meant that her attendence has dropped to just below 90% and the school started getting quite uppity about it all hmm. Since then I made sure that the hospital copy in the school on all letters and reports so they know it is a genuine medical issue.

I think you need to talk to the consultant about your dd's school as I think that her poo problems should be considered as a kind of SN - she has accidents for a medical reason and as such they should be responsible for helping her out. I think you need to put fussy parent head on make sure she'll be ok. Make sure the school know exactly how serious the situation is and that the hospital send copies of all letters. If she is absent and they get you to phone in instead of letters, make sure you also write a letter stating clearly that she is absent due to her chronic medical condition. Our school encourages us to to phone in but then of course they have no record of the reason other than 'illness' so aren't aware of the real reason for absence.

Sorry, I sound like I'm ranting on a bit but it has been really tough for us all this year, but we have done it and dd has coped well at school so I hope things work out for you and dd as well smile

bottletopbill Thu 16-Jul-09 22:37:07

My ds son was the opposite...and Lactolose and fresh apple juice did the trick for us after 9 months.

After a hard poo one day that torn him slightly my ds decided he was never going to poo again. Everytime he wanted to he would hold it in for days.

He would scream at the pain. I went to the Docs who said it was unbelievably common and put him on Lactulose..2spoons a day

We did all the reward chart stuff, bribes of chocolate and sweets etc.. but still continued to hold it. so was told to up dose to 4 a day.

This worked and he would poo fairly comfortably but its taken 9 was the most painful thing we have ever gone through with him so I totally understand your situation.

bottletopbill Thu 16-Jul-09 22:38:20

BTW my Doc was brilliant she said that the job we had to do was to convince him that it was ok to poo, the main aim was to make him feels ok about it all

nozzles Thu 16-Jul-09 22:40:24

Thank you for your message. I am so pleased (don't take that wrong though) that I am not the only one with this problem. I have been so frustrated this week as she had 3 accidents on one day and I started panicking about school in September. Some days it is fine but as you say it may be a bit of extra fruit or something and it makes things extra soft.

I just wish she didn't have to find a teacher to get the door open to the toilet. It's a big heavy door on a swing mechanism. She has had 6 inductions and they know the score but she needed a wee last time and they let her in the toilet and didn't stay to let her out and she was stuck in there.

We are going for a review end of July but I have started experimenting and have given her Movicol every other day for 4 days and that so far is working - she went on her own yesterday and today without accident and managed to clean up as not too messy.

Hope your DD is ok - school is scary enough without this extra worry for her.

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