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Enlaces a nuestra información en español sobre la diabetes, enfermedades digestivas y hígado, enfermedades renales, control de peso y la nutrición, enfermedades urológicas, enfermedades endocrinas y metabólicas, y enfermedades hematológicas
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Information on this topic is also available as a printable PDF:
Constipation (PDF, 463 KB)
Spanish Version (PDF, 785 KB)
Constipation in Children (PDF, 531 KB)
Digestive Disease Information
Constipation is a condition in which a child has fewer than two bowel movements a week, or hard, dry, and small bowel movements that are painful or difficult to pass.
Constipation happens when stool stays too long in a child's colon. Causes of constipation in children may include ignoring the urge to have a bowel movement, a diet low in fiber, certain medicines or health problems.
A doctor will use a child's medical history and perform a physical exam to diagnose constipation. A doctor may order specific tests to diagnose the cause of a child's constipation if he or she does not respond to treatment.
Treatments for constipation in children include making changes in the child's eating, diet, and nutrition; behavioral changes; and enemas and laxatives.
A child's eating habits and diet may affect whether he or she is constipated. If a child's diet has too little fiber, he or she may get constipated.
NIH study finds genetic links between common kidney and digestive diseasesDec 4, 2014
Evaluating Treatments for Childhood Malnutrition Based on Changes in Gut BacteriaOct 16, 2014
See additional news »
The digestive system is made up of the gastrointestinal (GI) tract-also called the digestive tract-and the liver, pancreas, and the gallbladder. The GI tract is a series of hollow organs joined in a long, twisting tube from the mouth to the anus.
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