Constipation Tricks

Nurses General Nursing Nursing Q/A

Does anyone have any good ideas for post-op constipation (with narcotic use)? I see this so much and want to give my patients the best advice I can.

19 Answers

Specializes in long term care.

Where I work we do what we call "brown cows". Milk of mag mixed with warm prune juice. Usually results in 4-6 hours.

Smiles and hugs. ❤️

Prune juice! Lots of it!

Edit: milk can sometimes make you go, too.

Specializes in MICU for 4 years, now PICU for 3 years!.

Most all post-op's I've seen are either on colace or miralax or something to that effect. If they're not, maybe suggest it to the doc??

Specializes in ICU.

We use BD prune juice for ICU patients - works well. I have heard though, that pear juice is as effective and tastes better.

Specializes in pedi, pedi psych,dd, school ,home health.

Old nursing home trick ...8 oz of warm prune juice BID! the "brown cow " is effective but often results in cramping. ?

Specializes in Telemetry & Obs.

Something that's often overlooked is coffee. If your patient is a coffee drinker and hasn't been having their daily cuppa joe, they're especially prone to getting constipated.

Trust me...I know

Specializes in Med Surg, Peds, OB, L/D, Ortho.

Warm prune juice followed by a cup of hot coffee. Works like a charm!

Have a Bran muffin....a big cup of coffee...then get in your car...you are GUARANTEED to get stuck in traffic and... ?

Specializes in Specializes in L/D, newborn, GYN, LTC, Dialysis.

LOTS OF WATER! The colon needs plenty of water to absorb and soften material for passing .......

Early and frequent ambulation! you have to MOVE to get your BOWELS to move! Encourage frequent (q2 hour) ambulation while awake in your patient, if not contraindicated.

And an early course of stool softeners is in order. Esp with narcotic use, I just start all my patients on Colace as ordered, as soon as they can take PO food/meds. Don't overlook the value of stool softeners in a post-op medication regimen! If that fails, MOM is ordered as a backup for us. Usually this and lots of fruit juice seems to help where I am.

We give our patients "crappuccino." Milk of mag, prune juice, and molassses...all dumped into a coffee cup, mixed with a bit of warm water, and microwaved to a nice "coffee" temperature...

:no: :barf02:

I just love the barfy smiley...

Specializes in Case Mgmt; Mat/Child, Critical Care.
cotjockey said:
We give our patients "crappuccino." Milk of mag, prune juice, and molassses...all dumped into a coffee cup, mixed with a bit of warm water, and microwaved to a nice "coffee" temperature...

OMG! "crappuccino"...

I don't know why but that just sounds hilarious!! ?

"Crappuccino" is just disgusting...smells and looks like what it makes you do...tastes bad, looks bad, works soooo good!

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