Variations In Bowel Movements

What Causes Bowel Movement Changes?

Bowel movement changes can have various causes, ranging in severity from 'worrying' to 'generally fatal'.  Finding the true cause means ruling out or confirming each possibility – in other words, diagnosis.

Diagnosis is usually a complex process due to the sheer number of possible causes and related symptoms.  In order to diagnose bowel movement changes, we could:
  • Research the topic
  • Find a doctor with the time
  • Use a diagnostic computer system.
The process is the same, whichever method is used.

Step 1: List all Possible Causes

We begin by identifying the disease conditions which have "bowel movement changes" as a symptom.  Here are eight of many possibilities (more below):
  • Poor Small Intestine Health
  • Stress
  • Food Allergies
  • Aspartame/Neotame Side-Effects
  • Colon Cancer
  • Low Carbohydrate Diet Consequences
  • Diverticular Disease
  • Ovarian Cancer

Step 2: Build a Symptom Checklist

We then identify all possible symptoms and risk factors of each possible cause, and check the ones that apply:
indoor allergies
painful deep penetration during sex
itchy skin
refined white flour consumption
sugar-free soft drink consumption
eating during sleep hours
very great unexplained weight gain
craving and eating wheat
severe eyelid twitch
occasional slight bloating
dairy product consumption
breast soreness during cycle
... and more than 130 others

Step 3: Rule Out or Confirm each Possible Cause

A differential diagnosis of your symptoms and risk factors finds the likely cause of bowel movement changes:
Cause Probability Status
Low Carbohydrate Diet Consequences 99% Confirm
Food Allergies 28% Unlikely
Aspartame/Neotame Side-Effects 13% Unlikely
Stress 4% Ruled out
Colon Cancer 4% Ruled out
Diverticular Disease 2% Ruled out
Poor Small Intestine Health 0% Ruled out
Ovarian Cancer 0% Ruled out
* This is a simple example to illustrate the process

Arriving at a Correct Diagnosis

The Analyst™ is our online diagnosis tool that learns all about you through a straightforward process of multi-level questioning, providing diagnosis at the end.

If you indicate irregular stools, The Analyst™ will ask further questions including this one:
Do you suffer from significant variation in bowel movements? This would include alternating constipation and diarrhea, or changes in pattern.
Possible responses:
→ No / don't know
→ Yes, some
→ Yes, significant
Based on your response to this question, which may indicate bowel movement changes, The Analyst™ will consider possibilities such as:
Colon Cancer
See the link between rectal bleeding and colon cancer.
Effects of a Low Carbohydrate Diet
In a study funded by Dr. Atkins himself, 70% of the people that could stick with the diet lost the ability to have a normal bowel movement.  The May 2004 Annals of Internal Medicine study showed that most of the Atkins Dieters had significantly more diarrhea, general weakness, rashes and muscle cramps.