Mucus slime bowel movements are common in IBS or Irritable Bowel Syndrome.
A lot of sufferers worry when they see mucus in their stool, although it rarely indicates anything serious.
It is a normal function of the bowel, produced as a natural lubricant to allow passage of your stools.
It is most commonly seen in constipation, but can occur in diarrhoeal conditions as well as in a normal bowel.
So, what is it? It's a protein containing, clear jelly-like substance produced by the large colon lining as a lubricant.
A mucus bowel movement can be copious in conditions of the colon other than Irritable Bowel Syndrome.
These include disorders such as infections, polyps (particularly with villous adenomas), as part of colon cancer, diverticular disease and the inflammatory bowel diseases.
However, other symptoms in these conditions such as hemorrhoidal symptoms, diarrhea, rectal bleeding and weight loss may be seen.
If you are concerned about these bowel movements you should always get it checked by your doctor.
Its important and will help to allay any fears you may have as well as exclude other causes.
When you go to your doctor they will take a history of your complaint and exam your abdomen looking for any clinical signs of concern.
If your doctor feels it necessary, they may refer you for further investigations of your mucus movements.
Investigations are usually in the form of endoscopic assessments which may include such tests such as a flexible sigmoidoscopy, a colonoscopy or x-ray investigations such as barium Enema or CT.
There is no specific treatment for mucus in stool - the main treatment is addressing the underlying cause for your symptoms.
In constipation, treating the condition may reduce the amount of mucus produced.