Metamucil for Ileostomy & Diarrhea: Worth it?


Here's my question: Does anyone have the first two conditions and do they use Metamucil? I was just wondering if I should start using Metamucil again. Would it help with the diarrhea and what other benefits might I get from using it?

Thanks a bunch,



It's really not diarrhea but rather the stomach contents don't have enough time to let the body absorb the liquids. In any case, I would restart the Metamucil if your stool is too loose. I was prescribed fiber 3 tablespoons 3 times per day!

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Oh, it's diarrhea - I was diagnosed with chronic diarrhea in the hospital - I was just wondering if the Metamucil would work in conjunction with the Lomotil. Thanks for the response.


Hi - using 3 tablespoons, how much water?


To Dina99 - In the hospital, I was using two tablespoons and 8 ounces of water - hope that helps.

Staying Hydrated with an Ostomy with LeeAnne Hayden | Hollister
One of the most frustrating things about this site is how folks say they have an ostomy, but often not what kind. A colostomy utilizes the colon before the exit which allows the body to remove fluids from the stool and leave it mostly in a putty state. The ileostomy, on the other hand, leaves directly from the small intestine, and if I am the first to tell you this, I am sorry, but it will always be more of a liquid than solid at all times. I have had an ileostomy for 6 years and have finally come to the place where I just accept the constant drainage and the need to keep an eye on it so that it does not overfill, even during sleeping hours. I hope this helps....Ridge.

I have had an ileostomy for 13 years and have been having blockages most of the time. My stool content is more formed than liquidy which has posed a problem. One of the few times I went to the ER, an X-ray showed that stool was stuck above the stoma.
My GI Doc suggested Milk of Magnesia which I took 3 times a day, which really helped. As more blockages occurred, I would just take MOM and the blockages would clear up.
Finally, last week I had a stricture removed and my intestines were twisted, so ileostomy was redone. Those were contributing factors to my recent blockages. Now, a week after surgery, I notice the stool is more on the formed side, so I will check with my GI Doc if I should continue with MOM. Folks, we are all different and remember to check with your physician on issues that come up.

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Re Metamucil

I spoke just this weekend to a WOCN who suggested I try Metamucil to help with the low-level diarrhea I'm experiencing post-op to my colostomy reversal.
HOWEVER -- I am now operating with a nearly whole colon - only missing a few inches from surgery. I don't know how Metamucil would affect an ileostomy, esp. in light of the proclivity toward blockages.

Another option, listed in Lexmark Drug Information Handbook is a bismuth product, such as Pepto. It works on diarrhea but is also indicated to help alleviate odor in certain ostomies as well as odor in an anal incontinence situation. If this is true, you might get double-duty from Pepto.

One other thing to check out (and I would NOT start/restart any of this stuff without checking with your dr's nurse or the doc himself) is that bismuth products act in part on the flora (bacteria) in your intestinal tract. It's important to have a healthy balance of bacteria, hence such products as Activia yogurt "probiotics." As I recall, bismuth is one of the products that work on the bacteria heliobacter pylori (H. pylori) that is a culprit in ulceration of the stomach and other nasty occurrences. If there's a clear case of bacteria overrun, then bismuth is a good choice. I myself have considered looking into this matter re good flora balance, but haven't done the research yet.

There is one other OTC medication, Imodium (I believe that's loperamide) that is indicated for diarrhea. My understanding is that it is specifically an antiperistaltic, meaning it slows down the muscle movement of the intestinal tract. Diarrhea is commonly an imbalance in water retention, sometimes caused by bacteria, sometimes by peristalsis that's out of whack. I don't think Imodium does anything to the bacteria levels - it just slows things down.

Hopefully this information is, if not helpful, then at least somewhat educational.

Best of luck - let me know how things work for you.
Kate (aka annabeth)

Hi Tess45...I have to use Metamucil 4 times a day or else I will have diarrhea all day and all night...I have a "J" Pouch and so if I don't take my Metamucil and Imodium. So I would say "YES"!!! Get back on the Metamucil and see how it goes! Good luck!!!


Annabeth--Imodium is loperamide! And yes, we shouldn't give each other medical advice--just common sense stuff, as every ostomate is different and we'll all get different advice from our individual docs or WOCNs.


Hi, just wanted to add to the conversation, and say that I have a colostomy which will be permanent, and I have all liquid for the last two and a half years. On occasion, I will get a pasty movement, but that is rare and I think that is my way of saying I am constipated. Everyone is different and I had been so worried about liquid all the time, but the doctor said just take some Imodium when it gets bad. Good luck with the Metamucil as I think it will add the fiber that you need, Joyce.

I'm with you on this one ... sometimes I start reading and think ... "that's wrong thinking/not the best idea for an ileo" only to find out later that they have a colostomy.

Metamucil for an ileo - no go. I don't know enough about colos to comment.

What I think is helpful (just an idea here, people - I'm not the forum police) is when we respond or post we do something like "What I do (ileo '09) is ..." or "When I (ileo '09) had that happen ..." or something to that effect. What it does is let the reader know where we're at - not only ostomy-wise but how long into our life with 'the bag'.

Some of you have been here for ages ... and most of us know what you've got ... but still might be a great idea to help the new peeps reading (or for those of us with spotty memories).

Just a thought,

All the best.
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