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What is a cause for mucus in feces?

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Quick Answer

Causes for mucus in feces include inflammatory bowel diseases such as Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis, according to Healthline. Other causes are cystic fibrosis, irritable bowel syndrome; infections in the intestine caused by viruses, bacteria or parasites; ulcers in the rectum; and anal fissures or fistulas. Cancer is another cause of abnormal levels of mucus in the stool.

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Treatment for excess mucus in the feces depends on what causes it, explains Healthline. To find the cause, a doctor runs tests, such as a blood test and physical exam. She may also order tests on the patient's stool and urine or even perform procedures such as a colonoscopy and endoscopy. Doctors might conduct X-rays, CT scans and MRIs. Sometimes, the doctor has the patient's sweat tested. A sweat test measures the amount of salt in an individual's sweat, notes WebMD. A very high level of sodium and chloride is an indication of cystic fibrosis.

Sometimes, changes in the patient's lifestyle are all that's necessary to reduce the amount of mucus in the stool, reports Healthline. One patient only needs to drink more water, while another needs to eat more foods rich in probiotics or foods that fight inflammation. Other patients benefit from balancing their intake of fiber, fats and carbohydrates.

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