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Rate of chronic constipation growing, experts say

AN increasing number of Chinese people suffer from chronic constipation due to dietary modifications, an accelerated pace of life and social psychological reasons, experts told the World Congress of Gastroenterology in Shanghai.

About 4 to 6 percent of China's adult population will suffer from the problem within their lifetimes. The rate will increase with age, with up to 22 percent of people aged 60 and above developing the disease.

The prevalence is higher in rural areas than in cities, which is also related to pressure and psychological factors such as anxiety, depression and adverse events. Females with a low body mass index, insufficient education or living in densely inhabited regions are more susceptible to constipation. Low cellulose food, reduced liquid intake and abuse of laxatives also increase the incidence.

Experts said people's awareness of the problem and going to see a doctor are important, as the latest guideline of diagnosis and treatment of chronic constipation notes that the primary treatment goal is to relieve symptoms and to improve bowel motility and function.


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