scared, in great discomfort, confused.... is this IBS?

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spengler
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Date Joined Nov 2005
Total Posts : 45
   Posted 11/6/2005 11:39 AM (GMT -7)   

I'm reposting this here because I was told by the ulcerative colitis subforum that this does not sound like UC.

 

I should preface this by saying that I know the internet is not where to go for medical advice, but I'm not going to be able to see a doctor for 2 days, and a specialist for who knows how long, so I'm really looking for coping mechanisms and support rather than a diagnosis.

 
In the course of this, I have seen 3 clinic docs and an ER; they ruled out bowel obstruction and appendicitus and possably prostrate inflammation; I get to see my new primary care doc next tuesday.
 
I'm a 24 year old male.  I've never had any serious physical problems.  My prostate has caused me some minor grief, that's about it.
 
about 3 weeks ago, I got a head cold.  For 2 days after, I was constipated, then for a day I had the serious runs.  I cut my diet to applesauce, bread, and some soluable fiber (mostly pasta). 
 
I should perhaps mention that I had noticed small amounts of mucus in my stool going back several months, but didn't think much of it as I was in no other distress.
 
At first, my chief complaint was pain around my groin that persisted long after the illness.  This then became pain, coupled with a terrible sense of pressure on my rectum, like I have to go, but it's constant.
 
My bowels have been kind of regular this whole time; they're moving everything through, but my stools are small and sometimes thin.  This sense of pressure in my rectum, just below my tailbone, is almost unmanageable for me.  I had gradually been going off of the antianxiety drug Klonopin (for several months, probably unrelated), but am pretty much back up to my full dose, because this is so MADDENING.
 
So my basic symptoms are this not-overwhelming, but constant and extremely distracting, sense of pressure under my tailbone.  Sometimes, especially at night, there is also a tingling sensation in my tailbone.  And lots of light colored, small stools, with lots of mucus.
 
I've thought about this being prostate related or related to pulled sacral muscles or incorrect posture, but that wouldn't account for the mucus I don't think (??).  Intermittantly I get what feels like gas pain where the top part of my large intestine may be.
 
Does this sound like IBS?  Or Crohn's? Or none of the above?  Does anyone have any idea what I can do to relieve this pressure?  This is awful, I can think of nothing else, I can barely do my job, and I don't enjoy doing anything.  If anyone has anything to say, it would be very appriciated.

7Lil
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Date Joined Apr 2005
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   Posted 11/6/2005 11:51 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi Spengler,
Welcome to Healing Well! :-)
I think what you're describing could be IBS. IBS is a diagnosis through exclusion.... You said the ER has ruled out a couple things; but I'm sure your doc will want to do more tests just to be conclusive.
Pain, pressure, gas and mucus are all associated with IBS. Unfortunately, most of us have to find out our own coping stragies for this. There are meds to help with the pain and a few OTC to help with the gas but really we just need to eat lots of fiber and watch what we eat. Probiotics also does wonders. The more live cultures we take, the better off we are.
That's pretty much all I can think of at the moment. I wish I could be more helpful.... hopefully others will come along shorty.
Please don't be shy with your doc when describing all you are feeling. Take some notes with you if you think you might forget something. And don't forget to come back and tell us how it went.
Take care.


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dbab
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   Posted 11/6/2005 11:58 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi spengler,
Welcome
From your symptoms, there definitely sounds like something is going on. You definitely have what sounds like IBS symptoms, with the feeling of having to go and the mucus however a doctor would definitely have to rule out everything else. IBS symptoms are very similar sometimes to Crohn's and UC however there is no blood with IBS. You may have blood caused by hemmhroids however. Diverticulosis should be ruled out as well. I know this is frustrating (we all here are frustrated :( All we can offer here is support so I want to you know that everyone here is great in offering it. Please let us know what the doctors say.
Hugs, Des
Co-Moderator ~ IBS Forum
 
"Sometimes I'm afraid, and I don't feel that tough...But I'll stand back up" - Sugarland
 
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spengler
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Date Joined Nov 2005
Total Posts : 45
   Posted 11/6/2005 1:13 PM (GMT -7)   
I will definately post what I find out. Diverticulosis has been ruled out, via a rectal CT series. I had a very small movement this morning that was rather unpleasant and if anything, I feel worse now than I have in a bit, so I'm going to bite the bullet and take an enema. I hope that relieves some tension.

spengler
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2005
Total Posts : 45
   Posted 11/6/2005 2:16 PM (GMT -7)   
well, sorry to be so scatological, but maybe this is significant.

an enema brought up nothing except for a very, very small amount of very small movements, and then a minute later, mucus. A self digital exam found nothing in the rectal cavity (yeah, I was desperate enough to try that one), but produced increased discomfort in the direction of my prostate.

If anyone has any suggestions on anything I can do to feel less like I have to go, I'm all ears. My diet these days basically consists of
applesauce
pasta w/out cheese
small amounts of bread/crackers
soup

chemically, I take
klonopin, 2-3mg/day

I took Donnatol (basically a natural form of bentyl + a sedative) two days ago, but if anything, that made things worse.

Please, God, help.

Post Edited By Moderator (7Lil) : 11/6/2005 7:05:01 PM (GMT-7)


Sarita
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Date Joined Mar 2005
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   Posted 11/6/2005 2:18 PM (GMT -7)   

Hey there!  I'm going to re-print a post I wrote a long time ago to another newbie that has some basic information I think might be helpful...

There are a ton of wonderful peeps here who can guide you through the world of IBS.  The most common symptoms are bloating, gas, abdominal cramps, and either diarrhea, constipation, or both.  Those are the hallmark symptoms, and you have to have them for a period of at least 12 weeks (can be intermittently) before an IBS diagnosis should be made.  Also, some testing should be done to exclude other problems - about a gazillion million other things can cause similar symptoms, including food allergies, parasitic infections, bacterial overgrowth, etc.

In my humble (but sadly experienced) opinion, the following tests should be done at the get-go:

- Bloodwork.  Complete blood count (CBC) and comprehensive metabolic panel (CMP), plus a sed rate (ESR) and C-reactive protein (CRP) if you are having other symptoms such as fever or blood in your stool.

- Stool studies.  YUM!  Three ova/parasite tests (O&Ps) are necessary because parasites and ova are shed intermittently in stools, so they may not catch 'em with just one.  Even with three, it's not always a sure thing.  These O&Ps are an absolute MUST if you've had any recent foreign travel.  Also, fecal occult blood and fecal leukocyte tests should be done.  IBSers should not have positive fecal occult blood or leukocyte tests.

- Colonoscopy.  It's not that bad.  Really.  If you are having very bad constipation or diarrhea (going only a couple times a week or more than 10x/day) this is an important test to rule out cancer, inflammatory bowel disease, diverticulitis, etc.  Also more important if you are over the age of 40.

Other tests can elucidate other causes.  CT scans are good for determining whether there is an abscess or fistula in the abdomen (associated with Crohn's disease); a small bowel follow through (SBFT) can illuminate areas of inflammation indicative of inflammatory bowel disease or hernias.  An upper endoscopy can help docs view the esophagus, stomach, and first part of the duodenum for inflammation, ulcers, etc. while a capsule endoscopy (camera pill) shows the entire length of the small bowel.

about 1 in 5 Americans reportedly suffer from IBS, and most of them don't go to a physician about it because, honestly, most people don't really like talking about their poo.  But if it is bothering you, interfering with your life, just go to the doctor.  I promise you that no doctor is going to be grossed out by your story.  I come from a huge family of doctors, hoping to be one myself, and I swear our dinner conversations used to revolve around blood, guts, and poo on a regular basis.  Anyone with a doctor in the family will know exactly what I mean.

Keeping a food diary is an absolute necessity and will make your doctor incredibly pleased and probably kiss your feet.  Also keep a symptoms diary along with it: how many times you go a day, whether your stools are formed or not, when your stomach cramps occur, when you notice the most bloating, etc.

 


schmoo
Regular Member


Date Joined Oct 2005
Total Posts : 33
   Posted 11/6/2005 3:25 PM (GMT -7)   
spengler, i get the feeling like i have to go all the time, i also have diherrea everyday and on bad days 3 times a day, mucousy ect.  i think the i have to go feeling has a lot to do with my anxiety also and stresss biggtime affects it.. i used to always have runs and just thought it was cause i was loctose and tolerant . but now that ive been under tremendous stress over the last 5 monthsim starting to think i have ibs and its affecting work:/ cause theres days when i cant even walk cause of cramps and im nausous in and out of the bathrooms at work.. im currently waiting to see a new counseller and the wait is just one more thing to have weighing me down....definatly have fiber to actually let things flow through or the fiber drinks like metamucil and so forth. fiber is important just remember to start out with mabey have the dose they tell you to take for a week then gradually you can go with the recomended dose they say.. fiber can make you bloat if you add it to your diet too hard and quick..

spengler
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2005
Total Posts : 45
   Posted 11/6/2005 3:40 PM (GMT -7)   
thanks for the useful info; I started an eating and pooping diary that goes back to last thursday, which is as far as I can get with good accuracy.

I'm a 24 year old male, and did have the CT which should have ruled out diviculousis. I guess cancer is a possability; I did smoke cigarettes pretty heavily for a while, but not for that long - and at my age, it would be unusual.

I wish I could have the colosocopy tomorrow, but I have to wait until my dr's appointment on tues to even get a referral, and then who knows how long? How long does it usually take to see a GI guy? Is he likely to be able to say "okay, you need a coloscopy, come back in 3 days without having eaten food, and we can do it"? Or am I going to have to wait weeks?

I'm sure there are people much more afflicted than I, as I'm still able to work, but this is very frightening for me and I don't know how much longer I can keep doing my day to day stuff without just going berserk. I'm already up to a higher dose of klonopin than I've ever been on.
 
I've added my AIM name to my profile; if anyone would like to IM me about this please do.  Schmoo, you too.
 
So is this likely to be the beginning of something that's going to last forever?  Or is there some hope this might vanish as quickly as it came on?
 
*sigh*, I'm sorry, I'm just so afraid.  I've had anxiety problems before, and had to deal with my mind going places I didn't like, but I've never really had to deal with my body being scary and out of control.

Post Edited (spengler) : 11/6/2005 3:46:25 PM (GMT-7)


bunnybabe
Regular Member


Date Joined Sep 2005
Total Posts : 263
   Posted 11/6/2005 4:04 PM (GMT -7)   
hey spengler,
(reminds me of the ghostbusters!!... i think he was spangler though...)
try adding rice to your diet, (for me turned out i was also gluten sensitive so all the pasta/saltines did no good) but plain rice is very easily digestible, and of course apple sause and bananas....
for me i had to wait about a week for my colonscopy ( i had blood in the stool, so i don't know if that pushed me up on the list, or it just so happened there was an opening... i have heard of people waiting several weeks)
i still keep my food/poo diary up, and yes, i hear ya, it sucks with how much time you end up spending looking at crap...
i am sorry you feel crappy, i understand, actually we all do...
when i was smoking i noticed that i would cramp up and poo more, you might want to cut back. with me, going through all this actually helped me quit--it is hard i know, make sure you are ready.
feel better!!!
--bunny
by the way, don't play the "i know other people have it worst then me" if you are feeling bad, then you feel bad and you shouldn't have to justify it... i do it too, and it ends up making me feel worst... take care of yourself-- your health is very important, no matter how young you are...
what would you attempt to do if you knew you could not fail?


7Lil
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Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 3269
   Posted 11/6/2005 4:37 PM (GMT -7)   
Hey Spengler,
Most likely it will take a couple weeks before you can get in to see a GI. At least that's how it was for me here in CA (bay area). Then after I saw the GI it was another 3 weeks before the scopes. Hopefully you can get in sooner, but be prepared to wait.
Oh, and FYI it's not as easy as "come back in a few days without eating and we will scope you." You will have to not eat (solids) and take an abundance of laxatives to go into the scope squeaky clean. Not to worry though, it's not tooooo terrible. The results are worth it and I would definitely do it over if I had to (I'm sure I'll have to do it in the future again anyway).
Take care.
Co-Moderator for the IBS Forum
 
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spengler
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Date Joined Nov 2005
Total Posts : 45
   Posted 11/6/2005 6:39 PM (GMT -7)   
I honestly don't know if I can get through 5 or whatever weeks of this, but, we'll see.  It's like the pain / discomfort in my rectum is so discomforting that I literally can't think of anything else.
 
I don't know what to do.  I want to sleep until someone can take a look at me.

Post Edited By Moderator (7Lil) : 11/6/2005 7:04:00 PM (GMT-7)


7Lil
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 3269
   Posted 11/6/2005 7:06 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi Spengler,
I edited both your posts with the mention of drug use.  I only removed the 1 sentence in both.
 
1. No discussion of any illegal activity or threats of violence. (ie. illicit drug use, including medical marijuana use, threats of suicide or self-injury, or threatened or intended physical harm).  Discussions of suicide or self-harm that are deemed negative and therefore potentially injurious to others are also not permitted.
 

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spengler
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2005
Total Posts : 45
   Posted 11/7/2005 6:40 AM (GMT -7)   
well, i might feel slightly better today; it's so crazy because i might feel better enough that if i wasn't obsessed witht he sensation from my rear, my i wouldn't even notice it! But it's all I can think about!

What coping techniques have people found for this kind of worthless, cyclic thinking?

dbab
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jan 2004
Total Posts : 4151
   Posted 11/7/2005 9:47 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi spengler,
Its not uncommon for people with IBS to be on any antidepressant medications since this disorder can cause us to feel really low. I would talk to your doctor about this option. More research has found that antidepressants can actually help our bowels as well.
Hugs, Des
Co-Moderator ~ IBS Forum
 
"Sometimes I'm afraid, and I don't feel that tough...But I'll stand back up" - Sugarland
 
Please help Healing Well continue to help others by donating  http://www.healingwell.com/donate
 
 


Keriamon
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Date Joined Jun 2005
Total Posts : 2976
   Posted 11/7/2005 10:18 AM (GMT -7)   
You said you were tested for prostate infalmmation... did that include testing for an enlarged prostate? I just saw a commercial on t.v. the other day about enlarged prostates causing urinary incontinence in men. I would think it might could cause pressure/narrowing of the colon too; all of that stuff is pretty close together.

Also, if you do have IBS, apples, applesauce and apple juice are pretty much no-nos for all of us. It tends to cause gas cramps and can often lead to diarrhea. If you are not allergic to milk, I would suggest eating some bland cereal. I lived on Corn Pops for three weeks when I had a bad gall bladder flare up. Maybe make you some chicken noodle or egg drop soup. There is some evidence that chicken broth really is good for sick people. It contains protiens that they may not be eating otherwise, at least.

spengler
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2005
Total Posts : 45
   Posted 11/8/2005 4:50 PM (GMT -7)   
I saw my primary care doc today
 
He wants a series of fecal occult tests, but his feeling is that I don't have an inflammatory disease, and with 'clean' CTs and XRays, that pretty much just leaves IBS.  He referred me to a psychiatrist, and told me that he wants to see me in 12 days again.
 
This is pretty horrible; the only thing that's hard to live with is the awful, chronic tenesmus.  I ALWAYS feel like I have to go.  Actually going makes me feel better for maybe 2 minutes.
 
Has anyone else had to deal with this?  Is this likely to be chronic, or something that will pass / come and go?  I could deal with the latter; it's the idea that this is a chronic condition that's driving me absolutely mad.
 
Does anyone have any suggestions?  I'm going to switch to a diet of
Breakfast: oatmeal or rice cereal
lunch: potatoes, mashed or otherwise
dinner: rice dishes
 
In addition, I was going to start taking metamucil in water, a low dose at first and then up to usual. 
 
I was prescribed bentyl.  Is this going to help the rectal urgency at all?  It's all I can do to get through the day at this point (in fact, I'm posting this from work, which I probably shouldn't be, but I only have 10 minutes left and I can't think about anything else.)
 
This is just so... scary, wierd and unpleasant.  A month ago, I was fine.

dbab
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Date Joined Jan 2004
Total Posts : 4151
   Posted 11/8/2005 5:05 PM (GMT -7)   
The bentyl should help with the tenesmus. It should stop the spasms in the rectum which give you the feeling that you always have to go. The fiber should help you as well. Keep in mind, some people can't handle the supplements so if that doesn't work you may have to fill your diet with fiber rich foods. Its very difficult to get the RDV on fiber.
Hugs, Des
Co-Moderator ~ IBS Forum
 
"Sometimes I'm afraid, and I don't feel that tough...But I'll stand back up" - Sugarland
 
Please help Healing Well continue to help others by donating  http://www.healingwell.com/donate
 
 


spengler
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Date Joined Nov 2005
Total Posts : 45
   Posted 11/8/2005 6:51 PM (GMT -7)   
so rectal spasms could cause this feeling of tension, even though I don't feel like there's any muscles spasming?

How long should I have to take it before I feel relief? I filled the bottle today, but I haven't taken any yet because my easting was not so fgood the past couple days; I want to try to get things a LITTLE more regular before dropping a chemical bomb on them.

(munching on a banana....)


thank you very much for all the answers, an internet makes some things less scary

dbab
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Date Joined Jan 2004
Total Posts : 4151
   Posted 11/8/2005 7:05 PM (GMT -7)   
Spasms in the colon don't always feel like "spasms"... they usually bring on sudden cramping and pain and can be a stabbing feeling as well. They are spasms because that's what they are doing, everyone's colon spasms, its how things are moved along; however in IBS, the spasms are more intense and bring on the intense pains. My med works very fast but thats because its a sub lingual (under the tongue) and goes to the blood stream pretty quickly. I can't tell you for sure but my medication can be taken with or without food and it doesn't cause distress for me if I don't take it while not eating but only you know your body. Make sure you read the directions on when to take it.
Hugs, Des
Co-Moderator ~ IBS Forum
 
"Sometimes I'm afraid, and I don't feel that tough...But I'll stand back up" - Sugarland
 
Please help Healing Well continue to help others by donating  http://www.healingwell.com/donate
 
 


spengler
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2005
Total Posts : 45
   Posted 11/8/2005 7:20 PM (GMT -7)   
do you have the tenesmus symptom? what meds do you take to help?

dbab
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Date Joined Jan 2004
Total Posts : 4151
   Posted 11/8/2005 7:23 PM (GMT -7)   
Yes I do. The antispasmodic is helping and my diet consists of a lot of fiber which helps me also. I believe that you'll find some relief in the med.
Hugs, Des
Co-Moderator ~ IBS Forum
 
"Sometimes I'm afraid, and I don't feel that tough...But I'll stand back up" - Sugarland
 
Please help Healing Well continue to help others by donating  http://www.healingwell.com/donate
 
 


spengler
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Date Joined Nov 2005
Total Posts : 45
   Posted 11/8/2005 7:28 PM (GMT -7)   
okay, my main problem is that the symptom is so constant that I can't think of anything else. I'm going to try increasing fiber (soluble and non) and taking this at 1/2 dose first, god, I pray this works.

ANy other advice is appriciated!

spengler
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2005
Total Posts : 45
   Posted 11/8/2005 8:25 PM (GMT -7)   
well, i took 10mg of bentyl about an hour ago, and i still feel all bottled up. I keep feeling like I'm right at the edge of what I can tolerate without running down the road yelling "I AM INSANE HELP ME".

dbab
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jan 2004
Total Posts : 4151
   Posted 11/8/2005 8:39 PM (GMT -7)   
If the half dose is not giving you any problems, maybe try taking the full dose (as long as that is what the doctor prescribed).
Hugs, Des
Co-Moderator ~ IBS Forum
 
"Sometimes I'm afraid, and I don't feel that tough...But I'll stand back up" - Sugarland
 
Please help Healing Well continue to help others by donating  http://www.healingwell.com/donate
 
 


Sarita
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Date Joined Mar 2005
Total Posts : 2486
   Posted 11/8/2005 10:51 PM (GMT -7)   
Be sure to start on the fiber slowly.  Too fast and you'll end up totally miserable!  As far as the tenesmus goes, I sympathize with you; could be internal hemorrhoids.  Try taking some nice warm baths and keep up with the Bentyl, this has worked very well for some people (myself included, most of the time).  I'm sorry you're feeling so wretched.  Hang in there.
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