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Diarrhea Specialist

Arkansas Gastroenterology Associates & Endoscopy Center -  - Gastroenterology and Endoscopy

Arkansas Gastroenterology Associates & Endoscopy Center

Gastroenterology and Endoscopy located in Hot Springs, AR

According to the American College of Gastroenterology, diarrhea is the most reported disease in the United States. John Brandt, MD, and J. Steven Mathews, MD, at Arkansas Gastroenterology Endoscopy Center in Hot Springs, Arkansas, offer diagnosis and treatment for patients with acute and chronic diarrhea. For an expert evaluation, call the office or schedule an appointment online today.

Diarrhea Q&A

What is diarrhea? 

Diarrhea is a digestive condition that causes frequent loose or watery stools. It is not unusual for most people to occasionally have loose stools. When your bowel movements are consistently unformed or mostly liquid, it may be acute, persistent, or chronic diarrhea. 

  • Acute diarrhea: lasts less than two weeks 
  • Persistent diarrhea: lasts 2-4 weeks
  • Chronic diarrhea: lasts four weeks or more

Depending on the cause of your diarrhea, you may experience other signs of illness. 

What are other symptoms associated with diarrhea?

When you have diarrhea, you may have other symptoms that include:

  • Abdominal pain or cramping
  • Fever
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Fatigue
  • Urgency
  • Decreased appetite
  • Poor nutrition

If you have bloody stools, urgency at night, or unexpected weight loss, you may have an underlying illness that needs expert evaluation. Don’t hesitate to seek treatment from Arkansas Gastroenterology Endoscopy Center right away. 

What causes diarrhea?

There are many possible causes of diarrhea. Most often, acute or persistent diarrhea is the result of viral or bacterial infections. If you travel, you may be at a higher risk of getting a bacterial infection that causes diarrhea. 

Chronic diarrhea is often the result of an underlying illness, including:

  • Irritable bowel disease (IBD)
  • Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
  • Crohn’s disease
  • Ulcerative colitis 
  • Colon cancer
  • Colon polyps
  • Parasitic infection 
  • Pancreatitis 
  • Celiac disease
  • Diabetes
  • Food intolerances

If you have chronic diarrhea, the Arkansas Gastroenterology Endoscopy Center team orders diagnostic studies, such as stool testing, X-ray, computed tomography (CT), or ultrasound to determine underlying causes.  

The team at Arkansas Gastroenterology Endoscopy Center takes the time to understand the underlying causes of your diarrhea in order to provide relief and prevent complications. 

What are the treatments for diarrhea?

With acute diarrhea, symptoms usually resolve on their own without much medical intervention. Typically, treatments for acute diarrhea focus on avoiding dehydration. 

If your symptoms are related to a bacterial infection, such as E. coli or Salmonella, you may need antibiotics. Treatments for acute diarrhea may include: 

  • Consuming electrolyte-rich fluids 
  • Avoiding sugary drinks
  • Avoiding milk or other dairy products for 24-48 hours
  • Avoiding spicy foods
  • Eating liquid foods like broth and soups 

Our office also offers FMT, known as Fecal Microbial Transplant for the treatment of pseudomembranous colitis (C Diff colitis).

They create a personalized treatment plan that fits your needs.

For evaluation and treatment of acute or chronic diarrhea, call or schedule an appointment online with Arkansas Gastroenterology Endoscopy Center.