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Spanish Translation

Diabetes and Constipation or Diarrhea

Overview

Constipation is a common gastrointestinal problem for people who have diabetes. Diarrhea that occurs at night is also common. The nerves of the intestines control how long solid food waste remains in the intestines. If these nerves have been damaged by high blood sugar levels, food and waste products may move through the intestines too slowly, causing constipation or too quickly, causing diarrhea. Damage to the intestinal nerves usually does not occur unless you have had type 1 diabetes that requires treatment with insulin for many years.

If you have diabetes, discuss any problems that you are having with either constipation or diarrhea with your doctor. Both conditions can be easily treated with medicine.

Credits

Current as of: April 13, 2022

Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review:
William H. Blahd Jr. MD, FACEP - Emergency Medicine
Adam Husney MD - Family Medicine
Kathleen Romito MD - Family Medicine

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