Treatment of functional constipation in infants and young children: PEG 4000 or Milk of Magnesia?
Constipation in otherwise healthy children is a matter of great anxiety to both young patients and their parents. Though a common pediatric problem, constipation can continue long term with stool retention leading to faecal incontinence in some patients.In many cases, constipation may also persist to adulthood. (1)
The most common form of constipation is functional constipation. It is accompanied by painful bowel movements with resultant voluntary withholding of faeces by a child who wants to avoid unpleasant defecation .To avoid the passage of another painful bowel movement, the child will contract the anal sphincter or gluteal muscles by stiffening his or her body, hiding in a corner, rocking back and forth, or fidgeting with each urge to defecate . The presence of withholding behaviors supports the diagnosis of functional constipation
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