WHAT ARE THE
SYMPTOMS OF EPI?
A symptom of fat malabsorption, diarrhea is commonly experienced by people with EPI.
Gas and bloating
People with EPI cannot properly digest the food they eat, which can result in uncomfortable symptoms like gas and bloating.
Fat maldigestion due to EPI can lead to gas, bloating, and stomach pain.
Unexplained weight loss
EPI affects protein and carbohydrate digestion, but the greatest impact comes from fat maldigestion, which is the primary cause of weight loss in people with EPI. While it may not seem serious, it’s important to tell your doctor if you’re losing weight and don’t know why. This can be a sign of EPI or another medical condition.
Foul-smelling, oily stools (steatorrhea)
Steatorrhea is a type of bowel movement that is oily, floats, smells really bad, and is difficult to flush. People with EPI are not able to absorb all the fat that they eat, so undigested fat is excreted, resulting in stools that look oily or greasy. Not all people experience this symptom.
Don’t wait until you see the signs of steatorrhea (oil droplets floating in the toilet bowl or stools that float or stick to the sides of the bowl and are hard to flush) to speak up. Talk to your doctor if you experience one, some, or all the signs and symptoms listed on this page. They may be signs of EPI.