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I just wanted to share my experience if it helps anyone at all. It seems when you google a symptom or two, it provides you with the WORST possible scenario, and I just wanted to send some comfort to those googling their issues.

I am a 55 year old female, who 3 months ago, started having more frequent bowel movements, which would be considered a "change" in bowel movements. Anything that your body is doing that its never done before is considered a "change". Normally for ME, one bm in the morning was it. I began to have 2, 3, even 4 some days. Since I didn't see anything else abnormal, I dismissed it. 3 months later I started seeing narrow stools. They began as cigar sized, then narrowed down to pencil sized. . I saw them occasionally, then I began to see them every bm for 2 weeks. Normal bms (remember to consider what is normal for YOU) are 0-3 movements per day, and 2-3 inches in diameter. I also had a few days of crampiness that felt alot like menstrual cramps, but since I don't have a uterus, I knew this was not what it was.

Everytime I googled my symptoms, my search engine kept taking me to rectal cancer. I IMMEDIATELY made an appt with a GI doctor and got a colonoscopy. And at the time, I was angry at myself for not doing it at 50 as recommended. If I had a genetic/family history of breast or colon cancer, I would have done the colonoscopy at 40.

Anyway, it turns out, my colonoscopy was completely normal. I had 2 internal grade 2 hemorrhoids and nothing more. The doctor suggested more fiber in my diet and more water. He also suggested that if i see any bleeding from my hemorrhoids thats excessive, I should see him again, as they can cause anemia in a hurry, if they are bleeding badly.

So for all of you out there googling your symptoms, DON'T PANIC. Take a deep breath, make your GI doctor appt NOW, and TURN OFF YOUR COMPUTER. Self diagnosis will drive you crazy!

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I am a 68 yo male surgeon and my history is exactly the same as this post. Regretted not getting a colonoscopy until now but did have a normal one 20 years ago. Colonoscopy one week ago totally normal . Still this disturbing unexplainable narrowing of stools with absolutely no abdominal symptoms or signs other than a few hemmoroids . Not even more frequent bowel movements. Even called and talked with the GI DR. who offered the same dietary regimen as the postI' rsponding to. Colonoscopy is a must and is very simple amd easuring. Get one even if you have no symptoms. Problem is I've increased the fiber etc with no change but it's only been a week. WWill keep yuou informed.
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Wow you were an answer to my googling prayers this morning! I will still see my GI but now maybe my anxiety will fade alittle ;) Thank you!
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Thank you for your post. I am having exact symptoms and gave been very anxious. Can't see a gastro doc till December 2. You have helped calm my fears in the mean time. This will be my third colonoscopy over 10 years. The other 2 completely normal so crossing my fingers that this one will also be. Thanks again.
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I am experiencing similar symptoms with narrow and ribbon like stool. However I also have upper abdominal pain, some trouble breathing and have noticed blood in my phlegm occasionally over the last 3 months. My colonoscopy is scheduled in a few weeks. Should I be concerned?
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