Constipation is a condition in which a person has uncomfortable or
infrequent bowel movements. Generally, a person is considered to be
constipated when bowel movements result in passage of small amounts of
hard, dry stool, usually fewer than three times a week.
About 4 million people in the United States have frequent
constipation. Constipation is the most common gastrointestinal
complaint, resulting in two million physician visits annually.