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Revlimid and bowel movement regularity

Home Demo forums Patient Message Board Revlimid and bowel movement regularity

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    Paula Voell

    Revlimid has created irregular BM. I have gone up to 5 days, then almost of full day of multiple trips to bathroom with loose stool. I am looking for a way to create a somewhat regular and normal BM. Lately I’ve taken Senna after 4-5 days, which has provided relief. But I don’t want to become Senna dependent. I’ve got a cupboard full of pre-biotics, pro-biotics, flav-lax, Metamucil to name a few. It’s very confusing. I believe my diet is balanced with fruit and veggies, oatmeal, grains. I try to drink lots of liquid. I do exercise a couple times a week but am somewhat sedentary as my favorite pastime is to sit in a favorite chair and read.
    I welcome any suggestions from folks who have successfully dealt with this Revlimid generated problem. Thanks, Paula Voell


    Hi Paula,

    Sorry for the delay in getting back to you — I’ve had a pesky cold I’ve been dealing with.

    You and I could be twins. I also take Revlimid, now sometimes don’t go to the bathroom for up to a week, and I am also experiencing loose stools. I too really like oatmeal from time to time (with walnuts & raisins) and my favorite pastime is also to sit in a chair and read (mysteries or books with a twist ending are my favorite). I too have tried Metamucil, Benefiber, Sennakot, etc. Sennakot also seems to work the best of those for me.

    I started Revlimid back in 2004 and it has been quite the journey. For so many years I had just constipation, then it switched to about a year or maybe two of the constipation followed immediately after by very loose stools. That is when I scheduled a colonoscopy which took place in early this past November due to the change in bowel habits. The colonoscopy thankfully came back clear, and the gastroenterology doctor suggested to add more fiber to my diet. I told her I have constipation but then I have a great deal of diarrhea, and she said I “needed the fiber to add bulk to the stools.”

    A long time before that, when I had only constipation, my oncologist (who has since retired) suggested prunes (or prune juice). I only tend to take a few prunes with a large glass of water about once a week, when I need to finally get relief, and they do help a bit. In addition, my current oncologist had told me within the past year that I should actually try eating a few prunes EVERY DAY to see if that works. So that is the suggestion I pass along to you, try a couple prunes daily in your diet with a large glass of water. (Fiber moves through better with the water.) Of course, you might have to adjust the prune portion to see how much works for you. If you have never tried them, I find them in the grocery store in a bag typically in with the raisins or they might be in the produce section instead. And don’t worry, you get used to the unique taste, and now I don’t really mind them.

    One other thing that might help (which I again only do on occasion yet need to start doing more often) is try having a HIGH fiber fruit (a handful of raspberries or blackberries; I prefer raspberries), coat it with a bit of plain yogurt (if you want and assuming you are not lactose intolerant). You can sprinkle a bit of granola on top if you’d like since you also like oats. Make a great mid-day snack that contains a good fiber source.

    I wish you all the best & hope this helps you at least a little bit.

    Take care,


    I had severe stomach bloating and pain when I stared Revlimid. I have been taking Metamucil pills which helps with consipation. I finally got into see the gastroenterologist and he suggested the FODMAP diet, which is for IBS. It worked for the gas and discomfort.I don’t know if it will help with your problem but is worth a try.There are many websites with this diet explained. My doctor recommended the University of Michigan one.

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