feces odor in student - page 2

Hi, I am a public school teacher,currently taking pre-nursing courses. I have a new student, an obese male, age 8. He comes to school in clean and pressed clothing, socks and shoes. The problem is... Read More

  1. by   melsch
    I would definitly suspect encopresis as this child is showing all the signs. My almost 8 year old son is struggling with this and he never notices when he smells. I would do some research on this and talk to the mother. This is a problem that most people do not talk about and may not even realize that it is a medical problem, and just punish the child for soiling in his pants when it is something they cannot control.

    Please check out the website about encopresis as it has lots of info and a great active forum with lots of personal info from those who are dealing with this. Here is the link:

    Thank you for being a caring teacher and asking questions and not just jumping to conclusions and accusing him of being dirty. I would also suggest that you encourage him to use the bathroom after lunch and tell him to take as long as he needs as timed sits 10 min after every meal are a big part of the treatment. If you have another bathroom that is not in the classroom where he could have more privacy it may also help him to relax and have a proper BM, rather than be worried that someone may hear him or smell him when he is going.

  2. by   NaomieRN
    I think when she goes to the toilet doing number 2, he does not wipe himself well.
  3. by   DestinyCat
    I found this thread in a google search.

    Assuming the boy had no incontinence/anal issue etc, this sounds like it may be a case of what they call on the body odor forums ... 'fecal body odor'. It's where the person (no matter how clean they are) can smell of fecal/gas/bowel smells and other smells such as garbage/sewage/rotten egg through their skin or breath. Usually it's transient.

    At the moment it is not known about by the medical system, so there is no current help or research. There is a blog about it at
    You could contact Maria for more information.

    It seems to be the most common form of body odor mentioned on BO forums.

    The nearest 'diagnosis' would be trimethylaminuria, known as 'fish body odor' syndrome. This is to do with poor FMO3 enzyme function. Geneticists estimate 1% could be 'at risk' of transient trimethylaminuria. FMO3 is also a drug metabolizing enzyme, so the boys medications may have some implicated effect, although that's speculation. My own guess is that 2 factors may be involved : some weakness in an enzyme (FMO3 seems the most likely, or some other drug metabolizing enzyme) and/or gut dysbiosis, where the gut flora is altered in some detrimental way. Quite a few get this problem over age 30, so it doesn't seem to be all genetics-only. I reckon most are a mix of both, slightly suboptimal FMO3 function and dysbiosis. The factors varying in degree in each person perhaps.

    This seems to not be a rare problem. It would be interesting to see any replies regards this. Whether nurses have smelt patients who may have been such cases (in hindsight).

    The main body odor forums on the internet are
    Last edit by DestinyCat on Feb 22, '09
  4. by   Freedom42
    How about contacting your school nurse?
  5. by   LilyBlue
    He may have a GI problem. I have noticed that some people with bad reflux have breath that smells like feces.