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In children with constipation almost 80 to 90% will be functional constipation. A child with functional constipation will usually have the following clinical features
- Age of onset usually 1 to 2 year of age, mostly after introduction of semisolids.
- Retentive posturing or withholding maneuver – Standing while straining to pass stools, against wall, cross legged, at times would hide behind doors or under a cot, with flushing of face – All these are attempts to retain stools but are perceived by parents the other way round
- There can be retentive fecal incontinence- Means small amount of fecal matter staining undergarments in presence of impacted rectum. Incontinence is clinically significant if developmental age more than 4 years age and frequency is 2 or more per week.
Absence of red flags suggesting any organic cause after detailed clinical evaluation
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Post drafted on inputs from Dr Mridul Das, Ex-Pediatric Gastroenterologist at BLK Centre for Child Health