Abnormal oily stools

Patient

Q: Is it normal to have a loose oily stool every time i use the bathroom and it does not matter what i eat or drink the same thing happens

Doctor

A:   The majority of people move their bowels once per day. What is normal for one person may be abnormal for another, and vice versa. The normal range varies from 3 times per day to 3 times per week. If you are moving your bowels >3 times per day, if you have to move your bowels overnight, and if every time you move your bowels they are loose, oily or greasy, and difficult to flush away, this could suggest a malabsorption syndrome, a gastrointestinal infection or inflammatory bowel disorder. I would advise a visit to your family doctor for a detailed history of your symptoms, clinical examination and further appropriate investigations including stool sampling and routine blood testing.

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