Health

Having greasy stools warns of disease risk – VnExpress


The body can’t break down and metabolize fat, causing it to accumulate in the body and excrete it into fat stools; due to malabsorption, cirrhosis, biliary obstruction.

The main components in feces are water, fiber, bacteria, mucus, protein, salt, dead cells and fat. Abnormal digestive system will appear fatty stools. At this time, stools have a foul smell, are more viscous than normal stools and are difficult to flush. When the patient has a bowel movement, there is a layer of fat floating on the water in the toilet, the stool floats on top because of the high gas content. Unexplained weight loss, abdominal cramps, bloating, and indigestion are also signs of fatty stools.

Dr.CKI Hoang Dinh Thanh, Center for Endoscopy and Gastrointestinal Endoscopic Surgery, Tam Anh General Hospital in Ho Chi Minh City, said that lipolysis occurs when the body loses the ability to resolve, absorb or transport fat. fat, increasing the amount of fat in the stool, causing osmotic diarrhea. This can be a sign of many diseases such as malabsorption syndrome, Celiac disease, cirrhosis and biliary obstruction…

Malabsorption syndrome: is the most common cause of steatorrhea according to Dr. Thanh. When the digestive system cannot absorb nutrients, vitamins and minerals, fat will accumulate in the intestines and be eliminated from the body in the feces. In the long run, the patient may be underweight, malnourished…

Celiac Disease: A condition in which the body is sensitive to gluten, which damages the intestinal mucosa, preventing the absorption of micelles (products of lipid breakdown) normally. As a result, fat is stored in the intestinal lumen and excreted.

The digestive system works abnormally, unable to break down fat, causing steatorrhea. Image: Shutterstock

Lymphatic occlusion: It is a condition in which the lymphatic system is blocked, damaged from birth or after trauma. At this point, the collection of fats is blocked, unable to move from the intestines into the lymphatic system. They accumulate in the intestinal lumen and are excreted in the feces.

Cirrhosis and biliary obstruction. In cirrhosis, the liver does not secrete enough bile acids to break down fats. If the patient has biliary obstruction, bile is not secreted into the intestine, resulting in unmetabolized fat and steatorrhea.

Lack of pancreatic juice (exocrine pancreatic insufficiency): is a condition in which the pancreas loses more than 90% of its function, reducing its ability to produce fat-degrading enzymes in the intestinal lumen. This results in fat molecules not being broken down and not being absorbed by the body.

Other conditions that can also cause fatty stools include thyrotoxicosis (a condition in which the thyroid gland produces too much hormone), irritable bowel syndrome, Giardia infection, diabetes, and inflammatory skin disease. herpes form…

Abdominal cramping is also one of the common signs of fatty stools.  Photo: Shutterstock

Abdominal cramping is also one of the common signs of fatty stools. Image: Shutterstock

Doctor Thanh added that, if not treated in time, fatty stools can lead to the risk of osteoporosis due to decreased calcium absorption, increased risk of malignancies such as esophageal and small bowel carcinoma, tumors of the esophagus and small intestine. Lymphoma or complications of diffuse inflammation of the duodenum – ileum, infertility… Disease occurring in children will affect development and growth.

To make a diagnosis, your doctor will look for fat particles in your stool to measure the amount of fat. Tests include qualitative testing, direct observation of fat under the microscope and evaluation; quantitative test by collecting all stools within 24 hours. Test results are normal when the amount of fat particles within 24 hours in adult feces is 2-7g and in children less than 1g. After determining that the patient appears to have fatty stools, the doctor will conduct more specialized techniques such as blood tests, biopsies … to find out the cause of the disease.

Doctor Dinh Thanh said that the best method to stop fatty stools is to treat the diseases that lead to this condition. Depending on the specific cause of the disease, the doctor will prescribe medication, guide changes in living habits and appropriate nutrition. Patients should pay attention to the body’s warning signs and seek medical attention immediately when detecting abnormalities.

Phi Hong

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