Common Causes of White Specks in Stools

Stools having white specks or spots are not normal and need to be investigated. If you have them one time, you may ignore them. However, if you are getting them on an ongoing basis, see your doctor for further evaluation. Here we are going to discuss some of the common causes.

Lack of Bile

The normal brown color of stools is due to the presence of bile juice in them. Bile juice is produced by the liver and stored in the gall bladder. It is released into our intestines to aid the digestion and absorption of fat in our diet.

So any problem in the liver that interferes with bile production, may turn your stools whitish in color. This would include liver diseases like hepatitis, cirrhosis etc.

Also, any problem with the gall bladder, like cholecystitis or blockage in the bile ducts by stones or tumorous growths, may interfere with the delivery of bile juice and cause whitish stools.

Use of Certain Medications

Some antacids that have aluminum hydroxide may cause pale stools.

Sometimes capsules of certain antibiotics, like erythromycin, may appear in the stool as a whitish lump.

Mucoid Stools

Mucus is an inflammatory exudate. It is produced by the inner lining of our intestines in response to an infection, allergy or inflammation.

Too much of mucus can make your stools look whitish in color. It indicates that your intestines are irritated and inflamed.

Conditions such as IBS, Crohn’s disease, colitis etc. need to be considered. The mucous lining of the intestines are irritated in these conditions. So digestion becomes poor, thereby leading to nutritional deficiencies, disturbed bowel movements, muscle weakness, weight loss and headaches.

Parasitic Infections

Parasite such as giardia or worms such as tapeworm may result in stools having white lumps. These lumps could be the infective bugs covered with inflammatory exudate. The patient usually has digestive problems, nutritional deficiency and pain in the abdomen.

Clumps of Fungi

White spots in stools may represent clumps of fungi. This occurs commonly in situations where the immune status of the patient is not good e.g. after radiotherapy, chemotherapy or in medical conditions like AIDS.

The white specks may be dead candida cells. The intestines are inflamed and digestive problems may accompany.

Pale and Oily Stools

This may happen in steatorrhea, a condition where fat is not digested by the body and passed out as it is. Stools are foul smelling and oily.

It may occur in many conditions that interfere with the digestion of fats. Some people are sensitive to gluten. If they consume a food item that contains gluten, a reaction occurs which inflames the intestinal mucosa. This impairs the absorption of fat and other nutrients from the intestines.

Pancreatitis, hepatitis or cholecystitis- all result in steatorrhea and may present with malabsorption of fats.

Lactose Intolerance

Some people have severe lactose intolerance. They are not able to digest any dairy product that includes milk, cheese and butter etc. These food items when taken are pooped out in undigested form.

Undigested Food

These may be leftover white colored particles of undigested food- like seeds, capsule cover of some drug etc.

Management

White stools or white specks in stools are not normal. It is advisable to proceed with investigations to get a clear picture.

Stool Test

Stools are sent to the lab for routine and microscopic examination. If required, a stool culture may be done. This would reveal the stools contents such as fat, ova, cyst and fungus etc. Stool testing is helpful in identifying the problem and giving a direction for further investigations. If intestinal problems are suspected, imaging techniques are done.

Medical Advice (Q&As) on “What Causes White Spots in Stools?

  1. Jami D

    I have also had this. It started when I started to treat my thrush symptoms. I was told that I had IBS after doing all the tests in the world on my colon. The tests are no fun. I had to live in an area that had a lot of pig farms and chicken farms. There I also went bare foot often.

    I started to get really weak and couldn’t walk anymore. I had thrush symptoms for about three years and every time I would tell my family doctor, they said it was nothing and to drink more water.

    I finally went to a naturopathic doctor and she put me on a thrush medication right away. I was able to walk in 45 min of taking the new drug.

    I found out a few weeks later that my throat was riddled with cancer. I went to NYC to try a new therapy that is non-toxic. I had a lot of die off symptoms for about three months. Then worms. I had three huge bowel movements with tons of worms. Not one or two or even 10, like 45-65 at a time.

    It was the grossest thing I had ever seen to come out of my body. It scared me half to death too. After a while they had left the building, if you know what I mean, but I still had symptoms of having worms.

    I went home and spent the holidays with my family. I’m back in NYC for round two of treatment. I have only been on for a week and already I have tons of white spots, and worms coming out. My vision has got really bad too. It scares me a little, but when I have a green smoothie my vision seems better. I hope this time is the last time.

    Reply
  2. Cara

    I have had fibromyalgia and IBS for 6 years. Lately I have been having more trouble with my IBS and pain in my middle back and stomach.

    The doctors don’t seem to find anything. They checked my gallbladder and said it was fine. But I have noticed that I have white spots, more like seeds in my stool.

    I am a vegetarian so I could not have gotten worms from meat. But I don’t know what is going on. Do you have any thoughts?

    Reply
  3. harriet

    Hello, I observed some thing like eggs in my stool about 1 cm in size. Since few days and I have pain while passing my stool. I am not taking any medication since 2 months, before I used to take for pcos. Please tell me, is it dangerous? I am vegetarian.

    Reply
    1. Buddy M.D. Post author

      Since you are a vegetarian, these egg like stuff is unlikely to be cysts. They may be fatty lumps or something else.

      Still, it is suggested that you go for a stool culture at the earliest. Don’t delay this symptom.

      Reply
  4. Russell

    I notice a white spot the size of a marble this morning. When I flushed, it appeared to ‘crumble’ but only over the surface areas.
    I am 42, no smoking, drinking, or drugs. I am in excellent physical shape, exercise often, and I haven’t eaten anything out of the ordinary in the past 24 hours. (home cooked burger w/bacon for dinner and omelet for breakfast) I only drank water all day except for last night I had a shot of whiskey and a soda.
    This is a new one for me! Thoughts?

    Reply
    1. Buddy M.D. Post author

      A single marble shaped stuff could be some undigested lump of fat, capsule of some medicine you are taking. Doesn’t sound serious. However, if you note it again, it is recommended that you go for a stool test.

      Reply
  5. Sam

    Hi there, I have intermittent white dots in my stool (usually in the morning). I eat more than ever, still I am losing weight (I was 138 and am now 123-125 and that’s in a month long period). Chest pains that come and go, have this insanely weird pressure that can be on both sides near temporal lobes or just on one side in multiple areas (daily and multiple times). I don’t have regular bowel movements. My opinion after doing some research is that I have some type of parasite/worm inside me. I had a colonoscopy done but they found nothing, and am going in for another consult soon, in which I will tell him every symptom and my opinion. Can someone shed light on this? Or give me their opinion? I would greatly appreciate it. Other facts: I raised pigs for a year and walked barefoot for most of my younger life (ages 14-18), I am 20 years old. I eat a lot of meats (Fish, chicken and beef mostly, Pork rarely) I am worried that somehow the larvae have traveled to my head and that’s what is causing this pressure but then again I am biased towards this because I am in the situation. I gave a stool sample. The day I gave it, it was the size of my pinkies fingernail, so very minute. I am going to ask to give one again on my schedule when I can actually see the dots so that I am sure they get a better sample with actual eggs (if that’s what they are). Any advice is greatly appreciated, I am worried. Thank you.

    Reply
    1. Buddy M.D. Post author

      The actual diagnosis would come out only after investigations. You are rightly relying upon the stool examination with culture. If eggs or larvae of the parasite are present, they would definitely show up on this test.

      At the moment, we cannot come to any single diagnosis. The eggs/ larvae of most of the parasites (especially tapeworm) are not visible by naked eyes. So there are other possibilities too. You may read about them above.

      Reply
  6. Lucy

    My 9 year old daughter has trouble passing her stools, they are often lots of small hard lumps, recently they sometimes have a lot of white bits in like seeds. She has had threadworm a few times but we have taken tablets for this which have got rid of them so I know it is not this. Thanks

    Reply
  7. karen

    My son is 38 and for the last 3-4 months has had white specks in his stools. His stomach has been bloating and is tender when touched. He is loosing weight and is fatigued. His blood work came back normal except for his cholesterol. Any ideas on what is going on?

    Reply
    1. Buddy M.D. Post author

      Ask him to go for a stool culture. This would reveal the contents of the stool in detail.

      He may be having some infection in his intestines, or may be there is some inflammatory disease in his bowel.

      Reply
  8. Calvin

    Every time I poop, I have these white dots on it and every time I eat something it use to fill me up till edges now and get hungry very easy now and I don’t know what to do.

    Reply
  9. Nkjn

    Sir, I am getting white seed type in stool since last several days. My liver test report was as follows:
    SGOT SGPT were normal.
    Total Bilirubin in within range
    Direct bilirubin is 0.26 slightly increased
    Indirect bilirubin is within range.
    I am taking medicines for blood sugar and cholesterol.
    Please advice is the problem serious and what should I do.

    Reply
    1. Buddy M.D. Post author

      It is advised that you go for a stool culture. This would reveal the exact nature of the white particles in your stool.

      Reply
    1. Buddy M.D. Post author

      This is likely to be due to increased amount of fat in your stools. Such a condition may be due to increased intake of fat in the diet, or due to poor absorption of fat in the intestines.

      You may go for a stool culture to proceed with diagnosis.

      Reply
  10. Anonymous

    I’m 31 years old. I had an abnormal bowel. Sometimes once a week and lately I found there a white streaks in my stool. What would I do?

    Reply
    1. Buddy M.D. Post author

      Get a stool culture done to ascertain what those white spots are. They may be cysts or just globules of fat in stools.

      Reply
  11. Jimmy

    Hey, I’m 16 and about a month ago. I broke my leg and haven’t had too much of an appetite. About 2 days ago I regained my appetite and my last two bowel movements have had white dots in them. Could this just be the change in diet or something more serious?

    Reply
    1. Buddy M.D. Post author

      May be the change in diet or the capsule covering of the medications being given.

      However, keep a close watch. If you get them again, go for a stool culture to know exactly what it is.

      Reply
  12. Michael

    For a month now I started taking fulvic acid. I am feeling okay do far and my hair stopped thinning. I am drinking distilled water and brushing with fluoride free tooth paste. I also heard that fulvic acid is a natural chelator.

    I have been noticing white small specs that flow in the toilet after bowel movement. Could it possibly the effects of detoxing or something else?

    Reply
  13. Kestra

    I’ve been having problems with my bowels, being like balls or pellets recently, and today I went to the toilet and saw white inside the pellet-like stools. The stools were also mangled and oddly shaped, not like balls anymore.

    Reply
    1. Buddy M.D. Post author

      Are you having any problems, like stomachache, vomiting etc.?

      The commonest cause of improper defection is that you are taking less of dietary fibers in your diet. So, your stools are less in quantity. You need to increase fibers, may be you can add insoluble dietary fibers to each of your meals.

      White coloration may be fat globules or some infection. Let us know your symptom first.

      Reply
  14. Andrew

    I’ve been seeing white specks (look like small pears) in my stool so I started tape worm antibiotic treatment (ciproflaxin and flagyl for about a week). The symptoms didn’t go away so I got blood work and stool work done and nothing is showing up (other than low blood sugar) which is disconcerting because when I collected my stool sample I put a few of the white pear shaped objects in the test tubes (I was sure it was tape worm, but nothing on the stool test came back indicating it, is it possible for stool tests to misread if there is not enough of a sample?). I get hungry really easy now even when I load myself up with food. I’ve also lost a fair bit of weight. I’m going to be seeing a Gastroenterology doctor soon, but I just want to know what could possibly be going on.

    Also I’ve been having intestinal/abdominal cramps pretty badly but the ciproflaxin got rid of most of the severe cramps.

    Reply
    1. Buddy M.D. Post author

      Ciprofloxacin is an antibiotic. It does not kill worms. For worm infestations, albendazole is the right medication.

      You may repeat the stool culture in some other lab.

      Reply
  15. gerard

    i am 16 and when i used the washroom and i looked at my stool i seen these see through like white bumps

    are they tapeworms ?

    are they something i need to pay attention to ?

    also the tip of the stool was full of these see through white specks they looked soft not hard as a seed

    I’ve gotten blood tests and nothing i have can lead to this but tapeworms. etc.

    Reply
  16. Richard thompson

    About every three days, my brown colored stools show white flecks throughout, about an eighth of inch in size. I have had liver tests for Parkinson and diabetes, but they proved OK? My stomach area blows out most days and feels uncomfortable.

    I feel I am not urinating freely? I have tremors in my head and hands occasionally. But the blurred eyes and double vision seems to have disappeared? Could I have a gut infection with some parasite?

    Reply
    1. Buddy M.D. Post author

      It is suggested that you go for a stool culture. This is to investigate what exactly those white flecks are.

      You may be having some parasitic infection. This is a possibility.

      Reply
  17. Danrick

    Hello Doc,

    For the past couple months, I have been getting these needle like sensations in my anus. Since then, I have taken taken two doses of Zantac worm tablets once a month and I felt fine. Recently, I noticed that when I pass stool, my stool is covered in small holes. I am guessing it is worms and the needle sensations have returned. How am I to get rid of them? Please help!

    Reply
  18. Anu

    What are the reasons for whitish dot like things in stools? I already have white worms problem when I eat sweets. How can I treat this?

    Reply
    1. Buddy M.D. Post author

      You may read above about the various causes that may lead to white dots in stools.

      Are you sure that you have worms in your stools? This is confirmed on stool culture. You may get a stool culture done.

      To eradicate worms, you’ll need to take a course of anthelmintic medicines.

      Reply
  19. chris

    I have been having problems with my bowels for eighteen months, hard stools constipation etc I have hard stools, burning in my stomach and my back and chest. I have severe itching all over my body and strange looking rashes. I have done enemas, taken laxatives and am now seeing a gasterointeroligist. He ordered a colon transit test. I am waiting to hear about results. I was wondering do you think I have a parasite or infection or something as my stool tests are coming back negative or if you have any idea what it could be. Thanks.

    Reply
    1. Buddy M.D. Post author

      If the stool culture is coming negative for the presence of parasites or infections, it is likely that you don’t have them.

      It may be some problem with the muscles or the nerves controlling the musculature of the gut, specifically the colon.

      Your doctor has done a colon transit test to assess your gut motility.

      Reply


Ask the Doctor


Click Here to Get Medical Advice for Free.


Specialist Doctors answer your question in 1-2 days.