What other symptoms might occur with yellow stool?
Yellow stool may accompany other symptoms, which vary depending on the underlying disease, disorder or condition.
Digestive tract symptoms that may occur along with yellow stool
Yellow stool may accompany other digestive tract symptoms including:
- Abdominal pain or cramping
- Abdominal swelling, distension or bloating
- Abnormally foul-smelling stools
- Changes in stool consistency
- Nausea and vomiting
Other symptoms that may occur along with yellow stool
Yellow stool may accompany symptoms related to other body systems including:
- Bone or joint pain
- Easy bleeding or bruising
- Itchy skin
- Unexplained weight loss
- Weakness (loss of strength)
- Yellowing of the skin and whites of the eyes (jaundice)
Serious symptoms that might indicate a life-threatening condition
In some cases, yellow stool may be a symptom of a life-threatening condition that should be immediately evaluated in an emergency setting. Seek immediate medical care (call 911) if you, or someone you are with, have any of these life-threatening symptoms including:
- Change in level of consciousness or alertness, such as passing out or unresponsiveness
- Change in mental status or sudden behavior change, such as confusion, delirium, lethargy, hallucinations and delusions
- High fever (higher than 101 degrees Fahrenheit)
- Not producing any urine, or an infant who does not produce the usual amount of wet diapers
- Pus in the stool
- Respiratory or breathing problems such as shortness of breath, difficulty breathing, or labored breathing
- Severe abdominal pain
- Vomiting blood, rectal bleeding, or bloody stool
What is yellow stool?
Although the color of stool can be affected by different foods and medications, it is typically brownish due to digestion of bile salts, digestive agents made by the liver and stored in the gallbladder.
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What causes yellow stool?
Stool is normally brown due to the digestion of bile salts, which are made by the liver and stored in the gallbladder. When the amount of bile salts is significantly reduced or they are absent, the stool can be pale yellow or grey. Liver disease can interfere with bile salt production, and anything that blocks the bile ducts can prevent bile salts from reaching the intestines.
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