Use of fibre may result in a life-threatening blockage that can only be resolved by surgical intervention
, bowel resection, and a colostomy (usually temporary). Continued use of an opiate invariably causes further constipation and in many cases complete bowel blockage. This is a major cause of death in the elderly in nursing homes. They are prescribed opiates, the bowel becomes obstructed, they are provided with "fibre" and they stop eating and drinking.