, also called fecalith
, i.e., stones made of feces
, is a hardening of feces into stones of varying size inside the colon
, which may appear whenever chronic obstruction of transit occurs, such as in megacolon
and chronic constipation
. Some diseases, such as Chagas disease
, Hirschsprung's disease
and others provoke the destruction of the autonomic nervous system
inside the colon's mucosa
) and may cause extremely large (giant) fecalomas, which must be surgically removed (disimpaction). Normally, however, fecalomas can be manually disimpacted or by passing colonic tubes (catheters
which carry a flow of disimpaction fluid (solvent).
Fecal impaction may have severe and even lethal effects, such as the rupture of the colon's walls by acute angles of the fecalomas (stercoral perforation), followed by septicemia. A fecolith is also known to cause acute appendicitis.
Coprolith is also used to mean fossilized feces.
Creason N, Sparks D. Fecal impaction: a review. Nurs Diagn.
2000 Jan-Mar;11(1):15-23. Review. PMID 10847055