Published: 2020-10-26

A comparative study on bowel habits among the rural and urban school going adolescents of Puducherry

Shiyam V., Nishanthini N., Niranjjan R., Lokeshmaran A.


Background: Adolescence stage the most challenging periods and critical period in one’s life. Bowel habit an important process in day to day life which also shows changes in its pattern from daily life. These changes need to be evaluated for the cause and to prevent certain diseases involving colon and rectum. Objectives was to determine and compare the bowel habits among school going adolescents in rural and urban areas of Puducherry.

Methods: A cross sectional study was conducted from Jun 2019 to Aug 2019. School students from 6th to 12th standard were selected by multistage random sampling method. A semi structured self-administered questionnaire was used to collect the data. Data were analyzed by SPSS version 20.

Results: A cross sectional school-based study was conducted among 1350 school going adolescence, among them 618 students from rural area and 732 students from urban area participated in the study. Prevalence of constipation was higher among school going adolescents of urban area (21.9%) compared to that of rural area (19.2%). Prevalence of diarrhoea was higher among the school going adolescents of rural area (6.2%) compared to that of urban area (4.1%). Open field defaecation practice was high among the rural adolescents (26.9%) compared to that of urban adolescents (7.4%). Type 3 stool form was the predominant type in both rural (50.03%) and urban (51.8%) school which is the normal stool form in bristol stool chart.

Conclusions: Total 87.2% of rural and 87% of urban school going adolescents have a normal bowel habit. Open field defaecation practice was high among the rural adolescents compared to that of urban adolescents.


Bowel habits, School going adolescents, Bristol stool chart, Rome III criteria

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