Constipation vs. Obstipation

Constipation and obstipation are earlier manifestations of the same problem.

Constipation is defined as the infrequent of difficult evacuation of feces but does not necessarily imply a permanent loss of function.  Many cats suffer from one or two episodes of constipation without further progression.

Intractable constipation that has become refractory to cure or control is referred to as obstipation.  The term obstipation implies a permanent loss of function.  A cat is assumed to be obstipated only after several consecutive therapeutic failures.  Recurring episodes of constipation or obstipation may culminate in the syndrome of megacolon.


Copyright 2002 University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine
VHUP Department of Clinical Studies
Student Web Designers: Srinivas Lingareddy, V'03 (2001) and Karen O'Connor, V'04 (2002)