Q. What is the definition of constipation?
The clinical definition of constipation is any two of the following symptoms for at least 12 weeks (not necessarily consecutive) in the previous year:
Ÿ Straining during bowel movements
Ÿ Lumpy or hard stool
Ÿ Sensation of obstruction or incomplete evacuation
Ÿ Fewer than three bowel movements per week.
Those reporting constipation most often are women and adults age 65 and over.
Constipation is one of the most common gastrointestinal complaints in the United States.