Please help me... IBS???

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sami-jo
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2006
Total Posts : 326
   Posted 6/26/2006 11:40 AM (GMT -7)   
I desperately need some hope and support.
I've posted my story before, so here is the short version:
First off, let me say that I have always had severe health anxiety. 
Diarrhea started Feb. 1st.  I was very anxious at the time, having PVC's and GERD symptoms.  At first thought diarrhea was caused by reaction to GERD medicine.  Made several ER trips for my heart and also for the diarrhea once I realized it was not caused by GERD med.  Was admitted for testing and spent 3 days undergoing all sorts of tests- colonoscopy, upper endo, barium swallow, small bowel follow through, CT scan of abdomen and pelvis, ultrasounds, chest xray, blood work, etc.  All negative (except for a benign tumor on my adrenal which caused me even more stress until I found out it was benign) now my GI specialist and PCP both say it is IBS.  Always the worrier, I remain unconvinced. 
 
I still have diarrhea every morning.  My stomach rumbles and gurgles all the time.  A few minutes after awakening, the rumbles start and I have to get to the bathroom.  It is usually what I would call loose stools.  Usually I go 2-3 times through the day.  If I am having more stress, like have to go to doctor or husband upset then it gets worse.  I also sometimes feel nauseous.
 
I don't understand how someone 38 years old with completely normal bm's just suddenly gets this.  I have read that people who already have IBS are more symptomatic during stress but that stress itself does not cause IBS.  But doesn't it start somewhere?  I have had stomach aches and diarrhea before when I was extremely stressed, but the episodes were short-lived.  I am completely stressed out and fearful over this.  Is that why the D doesn't stop??? 
 
I looked on the internet (shame on me, know I shouldn't do this) and saw that carcinoid tumors can cause D.  But since I had all those tests, they would've found one if that was my problem, right???
 
Oh, and my hair is falling out.  I have lost weight- 20-25 pounds the first 2 months; but have been forcing myself to eat and have maintained same weight since April.
 
I'm so sick of this.  If I could just believe it was really IBS and there isn't some deadly disease lurking I would feel better.    I take acidopholus and calcium and feel that they do help- I'm not looking for a cure at the moment- just some reassurance that it really is IBS. 
 
thanks for listening,
sami

7Lil
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 3269
   Posted 6/26/2006 12:01 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi sami,
I wouldn't worry about anything major going on... Especially since you've had every test under the sun done.
Have you considered seeing a therapist or talked to your doc about anti-anxiety meds? (No offense. It really can help!)
Co-Moderator for the IBS Forum
 
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sami-jo
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2006
Total Posts : 326
   Posted 6/26/2006 2:49 PM (GMT -7)   
Thanks, Lil.
I have been seeing a therapist since this all became too much for me. Also, my doc does have me on Ativan for anxiety. I try not to take too much as I don't want to develop a tolerance or become dependant on it. It does seem to help the diarrhea as well as the anxiety. I'm just a chronic worrier. Several years ago I had horrible unremitting hives all over my body for 6 months- it was in a lot of ways like IBS. Had all sorts of tests and when all were negative they just said I had hives with no known cause. I wish there was a way to know for sure that's all it is, I guess time will tell.
Sami

shelly1979
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2006
Total Posts : 164
   Posted 6/28/2006 7:13 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi Sami,
It's your "ibs twin" again.  I do feel for you because I am exactly the same way.  We have the SAME thing going on and it started around the same time and it is continuing.  I have, like you, developed the "what ifs??".  What if this, what if that...it's a viscious cycle that needs (and has to) be broken before we can get better and gradually get over this life changing nusiance! 
 
I have been to about 4 Dr.'s now since mid-March when this diarrhea (contunious) started. I have been to my regular Dr., Gi specialist, social worker (for the nerves) and just 2 days ago, ANOTHER GI specialist...because I wasn't taking the 1st GI specialists word.  The 2nd GI specialist told me on Tuesday that every test that I've had done, which included colonoscopy, EGD, small bowel series, upper GI, CT scan, ultrasounds, blood tests, 24 hr. urine test, stool cultures, pretty much show NOTHING.  He did order me a hyda scan and ultrasound of my gall bladder, which I will have done tomorrow...he said that's the only thing left to test. 
 
This is how this blunt GI specialist explained it to me...he said that he is almost positive that I have severe IBS with diarrhea because I am stressing over it.  He said that if you let it take over your life, it definetly will.  He asked if I had access to a pool and if I did, go swimming.  If I had a bike, go ride it.  Enjoy life again...otherwise, I will have diarrhea EVERYDAY.  The more I fret and worry about WHY this diarrhea started and never went away, the more diarrhea I'll have.  
 
Sami, I am in the same boat as you.  I too am losing A LOT of hair.  I also have lost at least 10 lbs. and I'm weighing about 109 or so now.  I have people asking me why I've lost weight and it bothers me everytime somebody asks that. Think about this for a minute...why are we losing weight and hair??  Most likely because we are stressed and maybe even depressed over this and feel helpless and hopeless...we are BOUND not to have the appetite that we once had.  We're "just not in the mood for eating".  Therefore, we aren't getting all the nutrition we need and hair falls out...also I read that stress can also cause hair loss!  (That darn stress!)  We need to let this go and just focus on relaxing.  Destress ourselves!  My Social worker gave me a CD that is supposed to help with relaxing.  I've tried it once and it almost put me to sleep so I guess it really does help you relax.  You may want to try something like that.  I listen to it with CD player/ headphones.
 
Please post me anytime.  I totally understand what you are going through.  Try not to cry. :)


sami-jo
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2006
Total Posts : 326
   Posted 6/28/2006 2:05 PM (GMT -7)   
Hey Shelly - good to hear from ya'! Sounds like you might be starting to accept this diagnosis??? Good for you! I sometimes am accepting and other times still very anxious about all this. I have overall improved since it all started, though. Monday I stopped eating sucrose & fructose to see what would happen and that does seem to have helped so far (but I'm not holding my breath). Sure do want a cookie, though! I stopped losing weight but the hair is still falling out. Thinking of cutting it really short so it won't freak me out to see it all over the place but afraid that would make me look even more bald!

Keriamon
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jun 2005
Total Posts : 2976
   Posted 6/28/2006 2:56 PM (GMT -7)   
Actually, if you have long hair, cutting it short can actually help you look like you have more. For one it's easier to style with a blow dryer/curling iron and get it "plumped up" on top and secondly, the weight of your hair helps to pull it out. That's why a lot of women with very long hair have very thin hair (I seem to be an exception to this, but I had pretty thick hair to start with). I wouldn't recommend getting it shorter than a bob at your ears, though, or you won't have enough to plump.

And have you noticed that sugar is in EVERYTHING--from salad dresssing to ketchup to bread? I've been trying to cut down on it, especially high fructose corn syrup which may actually be worse for you than cane sugar, but it can be very hard to avoid. And it works like a drug: the more of it you consume, the more of it you want. And when you try to get off of it, you crave it even worse. It's very hard to break. But I have heard of people who manage it and who supposedly sleep better and have a lot better moods. Before the discovery of the New World, when people had nothing but honey to sweeten things with (which is anerobic and does not promote tooth decay), medieval people actaully had pretty good teeth. A recent cemetary excavation in Scotland showed that the people buried there had better teeth than most modern Scottish children, who usually have at least one cavity by the age of three. The medieval people did not have many, if any, cavities--only tooth wear (from stone-ground wheat mainly) and the occasional herditary gum disease, and infections/abcesses.

nopeppers
New Member


Date Joined Jun 2006
Total Posts : 5
   Posted 6/28/2006 5:34 PM (GMT -7)   
To Sami or anyone else told they have IBS,
I very much feel for you.  In the past years I have gone through tests and spent much money and have been told things were all in my head.  However, It was not.  I stop going to all of them and starting watching what I ate.  Kept a diary so to speak.  I have learned that these foods, etc. were causing me food allergies or food intolerance symptoms.  Doctors aren't suppose to tell you what you can and can't eat they only treat symptoms.  I also have trouble with sinus infections and other allergies. I have had to take a number of antibotics in the past, but only need them occasionally too. Here is the list.
 
1.  Citric Acid - added to many foods - I have to read all labels or suffer.
2.  Peppers - red and green - not black
3.  Pineapple - high in Vit. C
4.  Oranges - high in Vit. C
5.  Melons
6.  Aspirin products
7.  Advil
8.  Barium - contains citric Acid
 
These were the things I found bothered my intestines, gave me a rash, made my bowels bleed and right side of my stomach hurt (Doctors thought is was galstones - neg. tests).
 
Also, many of these foods are listed on papers Doctors tell you to avoid before doing stool sample tests.  Interesting that they know these things can cause bleeding but don't bother to tell us. 
 
The only time I experience stomach trouble now is when I forget to read a lable or ask in a restaurant or friends house what's in the food.
 
Also, some of the citric acid put in foods comes from China.  What are their restrictions?  Does the USDA check this?
 
The best of Health to you all.
God Bless,
Nocitric
 
 

7Lil
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 3269
   Posted 6/28/2006 6:30 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi nopeppers,
Welcome to HealingWell! :-)
Thanks for the great info!!!
I hope you continue to post...
Co-Moderator for the IBS Forum
 
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iMarzz
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2006
Total Posts : 103
   Posted 6/28/2006 9:19 PM (GMT -7)   
You may also want to have your thyroid levels testing. Hyperthyroidism can cause anxiety, diarrhea, hair loss and heart rhythm disturbances.

I hope you get some answers and feel better soon.

hopethenfaith
New Member


Date Joined Jun 2006
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 6/29/2006 6:02 AM (GMT -7)   
Hello
I am a new member to this forum, I stumbled onto it looking on the internet for answers to my symptoms. I just turned 39 and also am a chronic worrier especially when it comes to my health, every time I feel a pain or get sick, I automatically go to the what if it is cancer. Just recently I started having constant diarhea, along with nausea off and on. I mostly have it within a couple hours of eating and in the mornings. The nausea will sometimes go away by eating something sometimes not. I have gotten to the point now where I am almost afraid to eat anything because of what I know is to come. I have not been to any doctors as of yet, am waiting to get insurance, but at the same time am afraid to go for what they might tell me.
I am glad I found this place, it does sometimes feel good to get stuff off your mind.
 

sami-jo
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2006
Total Posts : 326
   Posted 6/29/2006 11:29 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi Hopethenfaith,
 
You sound alot like me - I'm 38 and also a constant health worrier.  How long have you had the diarrhea & nausea?  Do you sometimes have "normal" bm's or is it always the D?  From what I have found out, stress & anxiety can attribute to this and you sound like me - pretty stressed out and anxious!  I have the nausea sometimes, too.
 
Sami

hopethenfaith
New Member


Date Joined Jun 2006
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 6/29/2006 11:48 AM (GMT -7)   

Hey Sami

 I have had a couple of regurlar bms mostly the D, it usually happens after I eat. and sometimes in the morning. But like you I am tired of being worried about it. It has been going on for about almost 2 months now, and it just started suddenly, i came down with the flu bug and it has never stopped. It is driving me crazy. My sister has the same thing she goes through bouts of D, and then it tapers off, my has yet to taper off this time though. I just in general feel yucky, the off and on nausea feeling and the D, every time I eat.

 


sami-jo
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2006
Total Posts : 326
   Posted 6/29/2006 12:09 PM (GMT -7)   
Did your sister have the flu, too? Is this something she's had all along? Just wondering if maybe it could be a bug causing you both to have these problems. I'm tired of it, too. I have had all these tests and still nobody can tell me for sure it's IBS. My stomach hurts and I feel nauseous today- I had been doing better.

hopethenfaith
New Member


Date Joined Jun 2006
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 6/29/2006 1:30 PM (GMT -7)   
My sister alwasy has a sinus infection, due to very bad allergies, but I think she was actually diagnosed with IBS. I am tired of that generally not feel good all over feeling, that comes with the nausea and then I hate the bouts of D. I am hoping that it is nothing worst than IBS. I would prefer IBS over any thing else being wrong.
I am very much the chronic worrier, especially when it comes to health.
 

Keriamon
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jun 2005
Total Posts : 2976
   Posted 6/29/2006 2:44 PM (GMT -7)   
If your s-i-l was treated with antibiotics for her frequent sinus infections, there's a good chance that she has antibiotic-associated diarrhea/colitis. Antiobiotics kill all the bacteria in your colon, good and bad, and without enough good, you can have bowel problems--usually diarrhea, but occasionally constipation as well. Probiotics sometimes can help restore your flora balance and correct your bowel problems.

sami-jo
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2006
Total Posts : 326
   Posted 6/29/2006 2:46 PM (GMT -7)   
I'd prefer it to be 'just' IBS, too. I guess the problem is that since it's a diagnosis of exclusion I keep wondering if there's something they missed! But as long as I keep being anxious over it, it won't get better. There are lots of people on the anxiety board that are chronic health worriers, I've found alot of support and good ideas there.

Long Islander
New Member


Date Joined Aug 2006
Total Posts : 4
   Posted 8/2/2006 11:12 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi Sami-Jo,
I am new here and while browsing the boards, I saw your post. I can totally relate. Everytime I get any kind of a symptom, I automatically think the worst -- and then I obcess about it. This kind of behavior also upsets my wife. Wish I could break the cycle. For me, xanax helps or sometimes I find something reassuring on the internet. Hoping that you are doing well.

sami-jo
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2006
Total Posts : 326
   Posted 8/2/2006 6:50 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi Long Islander, welcome to the boards! I do take ativan and it does help. I try to stay away from internet browsing as that usually gets me into more trouble thinking I have something bad. I'm still obsessing about every scratch or pain; but my IBS symptoms have improved a little! I hope someday I can go back to being like I used to be. Take care!

Joe11
New Member


Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 8/23/2006 10:18 PM (GMT -7)   
I have been using Vibe for about 5 months now and I have never felt better. I have more energy and my irritable bowel problem is gone.

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Post Edited By Moderator (7Lil) : 8/24/2006 12:53:02 AM (GMT-6)

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