December 22, 2009

Diet Tips And Treatment Hirschsprung’s Disease

Posted in Category : Common Ailments

The term ‘Hirschsprung’s Disease’ is given to a condition wherein blockage results in one’s large intestine which is the effect of faulty bowel muscle movement. This congenital condition is rather serious and the problem is due to the absence of nerves that are supposed to trigger muscle contractions in one’s gut. This leads to an inability to force digested materials through and consequently an obstruction is found in the intestine. Because of the resulting build up of intestinal contents, the person’s bowel as well as abdomen starts to balloon up. Since this is a condition occurring at birth, the complication could be an inability of the infant to pass stool. This happens in a really bad case of Hirschsprung’s disease and the baby could then vomit instead. On the other hand, if the case isn’t that bad, Hirschsprung’s disease may go unnoticed until the child is older. Classic problems when the child grows include problems with growth, distended abdomen and a case of chronic constipation. This disease is more likely to target male children as they are five times more likely to develop it than female children. In some cases, there is a link between this disease and other ones like Down syndrome, which are genetic or congenital problems.


When it comes to newborns, symptoms of this disease characteristically include inability to pass stool or the first one, in a span of a day or two, after birth. With such infants, watery diarrhea could be other sign of this disease. Other symptoms of Hirschsprung’s disease include constipation, vomiting and poor weight gain. The child might not be able to grow as fast as other children, because of this intestinal blockage. There is usually swelling of one’s abdomen which accompanies such symptoms.

Treatment and Diet

While treatment for this disease usually involves surgery, there are a number of home treatments that may complement medical treatment. Diet should typically be adjusted to include colon friendly foods such as fruits and vegetables. One has to cut back on various processed foods, unhealthy artificial drinks, alcohol as well as refined sugars. You will need excess amounts of roughage in the form of healthy foods such as legumes and vegetables, since constipation could be an issue even after treatment. Thus, water and a fiber rich diet should be your priorities. If your child shows any of the symptoms, your doctor should be contacted as there are a number of tests to identify Hirschsprung’s disease. He or she will help out with diet and home treatments in addition to medical treatment alternatives.