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Terms in this set (294)

Age - infants have small stomach capacity and rapid peristalsis; older patients have decreased ability to absorb and digest nutrients

Diet - high fiber is bulk of feces
Other bulk forming foods: whole grains, fresh fruits, vegetables help flush fats and waste products from body

Fluid intake - increased fluid intake keeps feces soft
6-8 glasses of fluid daily (1500 - 2000 mL)

Physical activity - promotes peristalsis

Psychological factors - emotional stress accelerates peristalsis (can cause colitis, IBS, ulcers and crohn's); depression slows ANS impulses and decreases peristalsis (leads to constipation)

Personal habits - may prefer own bathroom over others, busy work schedule may cause individual to not respond efficiently to urge

Position during defecation squatting = normal position (lean forward, exert intra-abdominal pressure and contract thigh muscles); supine impossible to contract muscles used during defecation

Pain - causes patient to suppress urge to avoid pain

Pregnancy - size of fetus will put pressure on rectum causing obstruction; slowing of peristalsis during 3rd trimester

Surgery/anesthesia - surgical procedures that involve direct manipulation of bowel stops peristalsis temporarily (aka paralytic ileus)

Medications, laxatives and cathartics laxatives/cathartics promote peristalsis, but when used inappropriately will cause intestines to lose muscle tone and become less responsive

Diagnostic tests - can cause increased gas or loose stools; endoscopy/colonoscopy require bowel preparation