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Synbiotics and Diarrhoea

Diarrhoea refers to an increased frequency of watery bowel movements. Diarrhoea may be caused due to bacteria from contaminated water and food, viruses that cause illness, or parasites from contaminated water and food. Diarrhoea may result in poor absorption of minerals, vitamins, proteins, and carbohydrates.

Diarrhoea can be classified into two: acute and chronic diarrhoea. An abrupt onset of 3 or more watery stools per day that lasts less than 2 weeks refers to acute diarrhoea. Diarrhoea that lasts up to 1 month indicates chronic diarrhoea.

Acute diarrhoea is classified as infectious diarrhoea, traveler’s diarrhoea, and antibiotic-induced diarrhoea.

  • Infectious diarrhoea may occur due to bacteria, fungus, virus, or parasite.
  • Antibiotic-induced diarrhoea may occur due to an imbalance in the gut flora caused by the antibiotic use.
  • Traveler’s diarrhoea mostly affects the travelers. It refers to excretion of 2 or more unformed stool per day.

Pathophysiology of Diarrhoea

Diarrhoea may occur due to movement of the food too quickly through the intestine for water to be absorbed and creates watery stools. Sometimes, the muscles in the intestinal walls contracts faster than the normal as a defense mechanism. The immune system then signals the intestinal musculature to remove the bad stuff quickly and thus causes diarrhoea. The complications of diarrhoea include dehydration that is due to excessive fluid loss, electrolyte imbalance due to loss of potassium, and irritation at the anus due to acidic pH of the watery stools. These complications could be severe in children and old people. The symptoms of diarrhoea can be managed with Synbiotics. It reduces the frequency of stools and also the duration of the illness.