Enema vs. Suppository - What's the difference?

Wikipedia

  • Enema

    An enema is the injection of fluid into the lower bowel by way of the rectum. The most frequent uses of an enema are to relieve constipation and for bowel cleansing before a medical examination or procedure. In standard medicine an enema may also be employed as a lower gastrointestinal series (also called a barium enema), to check diarrhea, as a vehicle for the administration of food, water or medicine, as a stimulant to the general system, as a local application and, more rarely, as a means of reducing temperature, as treatment for encopresis, and as a form of rehydration therapy (proctoclysis) in patients for whom intravenous therapy is not applicable.Enemas are used as part of some alternative health therapies, as part of sexual activities, and to administer drugs for recreational or religious reasons.

  • Suppository

    A suppository is a solid dosage form that is inserted into the rectum (rectal suppository), vagina (vaginal suppository), or urethra (urethral suppository), where it dissolves or melts and exerts local or systemic effects. Suppositories are used to deliver both systemically and locally acting medications.

Wiktionary

  • Enema (noun)

    An injection of fluid into the rectum, usually for medical purposes.

  • Enema (noun)

    The fluid so injected.

  • Suppository (noun)

    A medicine in the form of a small plug that is inserted into a bodily cavity, especially the rectum, vagina or urethra, where it melts at body temperature.

Webster Dictionary

  • Enema (noun)

    An injection, or clyster, thrown into the rectum as a medicine, or to impart nourishment.

  • Suppository (noun)

    A pill or bolus for introduction into the rectum; esp., a cylinder or cone of medicated cacao butter.

Princeton's WordNet

  • Enema (noun)

    injection of a liquid through the anus to stimulate evacuation; sometimes used for diagnostic purposes

  • Suppository (noun)

    a small plug of medication designed for insertion into the rectum or vagina where it melts

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