Having mucus in your stool is an important sign, although it’s not a specific sign.
Ok. What does that mean?
We are all familiar with mucus in the nose or sinuses or throat. Mucus is protective, and excess mucus production is triggered by the immune system. It’s a reaction that is triggered when the immune system is reacting to something. That something can be a virus, or a bacteria, or an allergen.
The exact same thing can happen further down in the digestive tract. In fact, some 80% of our immune system lines our digestive tract, because that is where we are most vulnerable to invasion from the outside world. And that means that mucus can be and is produced in our digestive tract.
When mucus is being excreted in the stool, or is the only thing that is being excreted, which sometimes happens, it is a clear sign that the immune system is having a major reaction to something in the digestive tract.
That something could be a virus, or a bacteria, or fungus, or parasites, or a reaction to something that you ingested. It can also be a reaction to damage that is occurring in your digestive tract, such as the ulcerations found in Ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease.
An IBS expert can help you figure out exactly what is causing the mucus in your stool, so that you can treat it or avoid it, and then your digestive system can heal.
If you need help figuring out what is causing mucus in your stool, we can help you sort that out at the IBS Treatment Center. We work with patients all over the United States and over 30 other countries via zoom and telemedicine. And we would love to help you too.
Dr. Wangen is the founder and medical director of the IBS Treatment Center, the award winning author of two books, and a nationally recognized speaker on digestive disorders. He has been on ABC, NBC, and Fox as well as public radio, and was named one of Seattle’s Top Doctors by Seattle Magazine.