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Laxatives and Diverticulitis

Do not use laxatives or enemas unless your doctor prescribes them. If you use them too often, you can become dependent on them for bowel movements. If you are having a sudden (acute) attack of diverticulitis, laxatives or enemas can make the pain worse.

Your doctor may recommend using nonprescription stool softeners while you wait for changes in your diet to resolve your constipation.

Recommended Related to Digestive Disorders

Enlarged Spleen: Causes, Symptoms, and Treatments

What is the spleen and what causes an enlarged spleen (splenomegaly)?  The spleen sits under your rib cage in the upper left part of your abdomen toward your back. It is an organ that is part of the lymph system and works as a drainage network that defends your body against infection. White blood cells produced in the spleen engulf bacteria, dead tissue, and foreign matter, removing them from the blood as blood passes through it. The spleen also maintains healthy red and white blood cells and platelets;...

Read the Enlarged Spleen: Causes, Symptoms, and Treatments article > >

Fiber supplements such as psyllium seed products (for example, Metamucil) and cellulose products (for example, Citrucel) often help with constipation. But you may need to try several types to find one that works for you, because different types of fiber may vary in their effects on your large intestine. These products cost more than increasing fiber naturally through your diet.

By Healthwise Staff
Primary Medical Reviewer Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine
Specialist Medical Reviewer Arvydas D. Vanagunas, MD - Gastroenterology
Last Revised July 26, 2010

WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: July 26, 2010
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.

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