Don’t you just hate it when you’re looking forward to a delicious meal and you realize you can’t taste or smell due to your cold?

And no matter how hard you blow your nose

It’s impossible for anyone, adult or child, to deliberately withhold their poops for two weeks, even one week.

Poops are wastes, and the body naturally disposes of them in a timely manner – when all is working normally, of course.

So when no poops come out over a two week period, this means something is very wrong.

But not only that, but the accumulation of feces inside for two weeks can cause an emergency situation.

“Frequency of bowel movements can vary greatly between people and may be considered normal,” says Dr. Edward Brettholz, MD, with Concorde Gastroenterology, who is board certified in both internal medicine and gastroenterology and is Clinical Assistant Professor of Medicine, NYU School of Medicine.

“BM’s three times daily or three times weekly are both normal if there are no associated symptoms such as abdominal pain or straining,” continues Dr. Brettholz.

“However, absence of bowel movement for two weeks is usually associated with very hard and dry BM’s causing pellet-like stools, feeling of incomplete evacuation, abdominal pain and bloating.

“This can form a fecal impaction which can cause a colon blockage and abdominal distention [expansion] due to bowel obstruction.

“Ulcers can form due to pressure of the hard stool, and intestinal rupture can occur if blockage persists.”

Intestinal rupture can be fatal if not treated in a timely manner. Death would be due to body-wide infection from the colon contents making their way into the bloodstream.

“This degree of constipation is most concerning if it was an acute change in the person’s normal bowel habits,” continues Dr. Brettholz.

“It requires immediate medical attention and may need to be treated with increased fluid ingestion, fiber supplements, stool softeners and laxatives.

“Sometimes it requires manual dis-impaction (manually removing hard stool from the rectum).” In this case, a doctor uses his fingers to dig the impacted feces out of the rectum.

However, some of the impaction may be too high up for the physician’s fingers to reach. In that case, an enema would be given to soften everything up and promote a full bowel movement.

Dr. Brettholz lectures extensively and is involved in cutting edge research trials. He has a special interest and expertise in liver diseases, GERD, inflammatory bowel disease and hemorrhoid treatment.
Lorra Garrick has been covering medical, fitness and cybersecurity topics for many years, having written thousands of articles for print magazines and websites, including as a ghostwriter. She’s also a former ACE-certified personal trainer.