Frequency Of Diarrhea Episodes

What Causes Frequent Diarrhea?

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

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Diagnosis is usually a complex process due to the sheer number of possible causes and related symptoms.  In order to diagnose frequent diarrhea, 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 "frequent diarrhea" as a symptom.  Here are eight of many possibilities (more below):
  • Vitamin B12 Need
  • Food Poisoning
  • Drug Side-Effects
  • Intestinal Obstruction
  • Gastroenteritis
  • West Nile Virus
  • Diverticular Disease
  • Mesenteric Ischemia

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:
recent onset vomiting
slight abdominal distension
poor mental clarity
medium-term vegan diet
having low melatonin levels
black/brown fingernails
blood transfusions
no blood in nipple discharge
frequent confusion/disorientation
poor balance
major unexplained weight loss
diverticular disease
... and more than 70 others

Step 3: Rule Out or Confirm each Possible Cause

A differential diagnosis of your symptoms and risk factors finds the likely cause of frequent diarrhea:
Cause Probability Status
Intestinal Obstruction 94% Confirm
Vitamin B12 Need 21% Unlikely
Gastroenteritis 12% Unlikely
Mesenteric Ischemia 5% Ruled out
Food Poisoning 2% Ruled out
Diverticular Disease 0% Ruled out
West Nile Virus 0% Ruled out
Drug Side-Effects 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.

In the Bowel Movement Symptoms section of the questionnaire, The Analyst™ will ask the following question about frequency of diarrhea episodes:
Approximately how often do you suffer from diarrhea?
Possible responses:
→ Very rarely / it is not a problem / don't know
→ Occasionally - a few times a year
→ Regularly - at least once a month
→ Often - at least once a week
→ Frequently - after most or all meals
Based on your response to this question, which may indicate not suffering from diarrhea, occasional episodes of diarrhea, regular episodes of diarrhea or frequent episodes of diarrhea, The Analyst™ will consider possibilities such as:
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