Do you ever get panic attacks with your IBS?

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CathyA
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Date Joined Mar 2005
Total Posts : 1431
   Posted 5/13/2007 11:15 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi all,
   My IBS-D was doing very well for a long time.  Then I did a couple things that might have brought it back........like take an antibiotic; have gone through a couple real stressful events, came off my Toprol (beta blocker).  For me, the IBS is more a weird symptom thing than horrible diarrhea.  I have epigastric/chest funkiness that drives me crazy.  It feels like a heart problem but its not. It feels like a snake moving around in my chest all the time.  When I get these episodes (that might last for weeks), I feel like I need to burp.  At the same time I feel like my entire intestines are swollen.   But I also get a very anxious/panicky feeling with it.  I feel totally out of it, like I'm on some drug.
   Maybe its because our GI tracts are our second brains, and when its out of sorts, our first brains get weird too?  I hate it.  I hate never being able to count on my body being the same from one day to the next.  Sometimes its just so scary.  sad

hungry
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 30
   Posted 5/13/2007 4:56 PM (GMT -7)   
I get the same thing except mine is a panic like chest pressure. It is really horrible. Before I was diagnosed, my doctors and ER doctors always called it a panic attack but I was told by several GI doctors that it was acid reflux, a nerve issue or deferred pain/pressure from the IBS. When I took liquid lidocaine it was nearly gone. When I took Zelnorm it was gone. It was concluded also that I have a little acid coming up. It was so small I couldn't even feel it but a little was getting into my lungs. This is very common. Could it be this for you? After I took prevacid ( nexium and protonics didn't work for me) it disappeared. Perhaps this might help, although the snake like problem sounds different. I hope you find the source to the problem. I know from experience that this is very stressful. I am sorry that you aren't feeling well this week.

CathyA
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Date Joined Mar 2005
Total Posts : 1431
   Posted 5/13/2007 6:14 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi Hungry,
Yes, I do have GERD too, but I haven't had heartburn in a very long time........but its probably possible to not have heartburn, yet have some other strange feelings from it. I was on aciphex for 6 years. It worked very well, but it gave me pretty bad headaches. I've been taking double strength Pepcid, but I don't think its doing anything.
I have a colonoscopy on Tuesday, so I guess we'll find out if I actually DO have a snake in there! ;)
Thanks for your help Hungry.

shadowfax
New Member


Date Joined May 2007
Total Posts : 12
   Posted 5/15/2007 8:17 AM (GMT -7)   
Hang in there! I totally agree with you on the second brain thing...Sometimes, my gut lets me know ahead of time that it's in trouble (gastronomically-speaking), like I feel sort of jumpy and agitated even though there's nothing to make me feel that way. It's sometimes hard to distinguish real anxiety from gut issues, but I've learned to really tune into my body to find out what really is going on. Meditation does wonders =)

I also experience annoying heart palpitations if I have too much gas, or if I'm backed up. I also experienced lots of palpitations when I ate wheat (which I no longer do and have really improved because of it).

Maybe all these odd symptoms are our bodies' way of saying "Enough already!" after all these years of ignoring the subtle signs. Now, the signs are more like screams, so we really need to take heed and care for ourselves.

I hope everything calms down for you.

dbab
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Date Joined Jan 2004
Total Posts : 4151
   Posted 5/15/2007 8:25 AM (GMT -7)   
There is more to the second brain thing than you know. 95% of our serotonin (mood leveling hormone) is in our guts. Only 5% in our brain. Now that says a lot. Many people just rolled their eyes when doctors started prescribing anti-depressants off label for IBS but many have benefited from them because it balances the serotonin levels and helps some (not all) out and dealing with their IBS.
"Des"
Co-Moderator ~ IBS Forum
Dx: IBS 1989, Diverticulosis 2004, Idiopathic Acute Colitis 2006, UCTD 2007
Meds: Plaquenil 400mg, Chlorzoxazone 500mg, Lyrica 50mg, Protonix 40mg, Naproxen 1000mg, Xanax XR 2mg, Miralax 17g, Supplements


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CathyA
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Date Joined Mar 2005
Total Posts : 1431
   Posted 5/15/2007 9:19 AM (GMT -7)   
My problem is complicated in that I think I have an eating disorder. Plus, I guess there's all that emotional garbage we carry from childhood. I think my brain is so disconnected from my gut (in terms of knowing fullness/satiety), that I actually continually harm myself because I can't not eat. I eat when I don't even feel good. I eat when my stomach feels like its going to explode. I eat things that I know I don't tolerate. I know I sound like a big whimp.........but I have discipline in other areas of my life, so I know I'm capable. But this eating thing is just something that I feel I have no control of. Maybe I AM just a big whimp, but I think I have the worst genetic make-up for eating, along with some pretty unfortunate eating habits from childhood.
For example, I know for a fact that I would feel 100% better if I would cut way back on carbs............but I'm finding that almost impossible. The only way I could cut out chocolate in the past was knowing it would give me a migraine. The only way I could cut out caffeine was when I had so many irregular heartbeats, it really scared me.
I wish I could do some things out of just knowing they were good for me to do!
So......I guess what I'm saying is that I have a big hand in messing up my second brain!
I'm trying to develop more ability to try different ways of treating my GI tract, in hopes of feeling better. But the notion of giving up things that I like is so scary to me.
Sorry if I'm sounding like a big weak wuss! My sedative for my colonoscopy is wearing off and I might not even be making any sense!

I'm hoping to read a couple of the good books out on taking care of our digestive tracts soon. I just feel that my "fibromyalgia" could very likely be a gut problem.
Sorry to ramble on so!

dbab
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jan 2004
Total Posts : 4151
   Posted 5/15/2007 9:32 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi Cathy,

Learning to eat a different way is huge and I believe it takes time and patience. I don't think anyone could change the way they eat overnight just like when you stop smoking most people cannot do it cold turkey. It takes will power and a relearning of behavior of sorts. I have changed my eating dramatically in the past couple of years and it took a long time to do it. I won't lie, I cheat a bit here and there but nothing like I used to. I actually crave fruits and veggies now where as before I would just turn my nose up at them. It's crazy and I never thought I would be where I am... I would have betted that I wouldn't.

Portions used to be a big problem for me because I would feel like I had to finish my food (still do actually) so I went and bought new dishes and purposely bought the set with the smallest dinner plates. That way I could still fill up my plate but not feel like I was missing anything. When hubby and I go out to dinner, we now always split a plate of whatever and I walk out of there full or satisfied. I think subconsiously because I finished my plate but eat half of what I used to.

I hope your colonscopy went well. Did he tell you if he noticed anything unusual, when do you get your results?

Take Care
"Des"
Co-Moderator ~ IBS Forum
Dx: IBS 1989, Diverticulosis 2004, Idiopathic Acute Colitis 2006, UCTD 2007
Meds: Plaquenil 400mg, Chlorzoxazone 500mg, Lyrica 50mg, Protonix 40mg, Naproxen 1000mg, Xanax XR 2mg, Miralax 17g, Supplements


http://www.healingwell.com/donate


shelly1979
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2006
Total Posts : 164
   Posted 5/15/2007 1:35 PM (GMT -7)   

YES!! 

I have felt that way....too many times.  I also have IBS-D.  Dx in March '06.  My IBS-D came out of nowhere and I'm still dealing with it.  It stresses me out and puts me in a panic...at times, I felt like I was going to die.  BUT...I didn't! :-)    I think it's a lot to do with why we have IBS-D.  I think that our personalities may contribute to some of it.  I have always been a high-strung individual.  I think it just caught up with me & now I'm paying for it.  It has slowed down a bit...I still have it though. SOmetimes, I feel like I fill up fast when eating, I get acid reflux, and I also have a bad taste in my mouth a lot of the times...I think it all goes along with IBS-D.  It must, because 2 GI specialist haven't found anything wrong wiith me...just that I have D everyday...so they say I have IBS. 

I'm 7 mo. pregnant and since being pregnant, it was slowed down quite a bit...not normal, but better...I'll take "better"!  I hope it doesn't come back full force after the baby is here.  My "D" always hits me right when I get up in the morning.  I also pass mucus, which is grose...but it's okay to talk about it here and that is nice to know.  It helps to talk about to get some of that "worry" out of your system.  It's nice to know that you're not alone. 

Take Care,

Shelly :-)


CathyA
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2005
Total Posts : 1431
   Posted 5/17/2007 5:55 AM (GMT -7)   
HI Des and Shelly,
Eating has been a life-long battle for me. I'm doing lots better than I used to.........but mostly because I'm getting older and my system just can't handle what it used to.
what's weird about me is that I can go through months and months of eating extremely healthily, and loving it........then all of a sudden I'm in a downward spiral of not being able to stop eating everything in sight. I just never know when its going to happen.
And I'm hungry even when I'm sick. It just never stops.
I have been sooooo much more aware of my various GI pains since I came off my beta blocker. In fact, I'm thinking now that alot of my various problems (IBS, fibro), have something to do with having too many beta adrenergic receptors all through my body. I would love to go back on the beta blocker, to see if it settled things down, but the beta blocker made me totally mindless and made me hungry 24 hours a day! Plus, to come off of it means that I have to have a couple months of a very fast heartrate. Too bad there aren't more drugs that don't have a high price to pay in terms of side-effects.
I'm tired of being me. I'm tired of all the different battles I have to fight. :( But I guess I'm all I've got, so I'd better figure out how to make it work.
Shelly......good luck with the rest of your pregnancy.
I'm like you in that after awhile, of having so much panic and thinking I would die........and realizing that I never DO die........its a bit of comfort. It makes me realize that I DO get through it.

gmaA
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2007
Total Posts : 117
   Posted 5/17/2007 6:19 PM (GMT -7)   
I am not sure if I am having a panic attack when I have those urgent bm's (which for me often start out as hard stool and progress to diarrhea), with so much pain or what, but it hurts so bad I feel like I am going to die!!!!!!!!! I usually end up in the bathroom numerous times back to back and I get so nauseated and hot all over and I break out into a sweat; I normally don't vomit, but I sure feel like I am going to. (Trash can is beside me). I also feel like I am going to pass out while this is going on. Afterwards I have chills and feel so drained. I talked to my GI's PA about it and she was not alarmed. I am not going to say that it is normal, but she said that it is kind of like when you have a virus, you know how your body feels when you have diarrhea and vomiting with a virus. I hate it and not only am I sooooooo sick, but it makes me think I am never going to get this under control, it happens all the time and I hate it. I cry because of the pain and I feel sorry for myself and wonder why, why, why I have to be this way. I do not feel better right away, it takes me awhile I feel so drained afterwards, but it may very well be a panic attack I'm not sure. I do have panic attacks when it is storming and tornado's are likely, and I do have similar symptoms.
severe post-infectious ibs d x 4 yrs alternating now w/ibs c;  gerd; hx of c-diff; some type of myalgia; migraines, anxiety, depression, ptsd; endometriosis; gallbladder removed; liver adenoma removed; multiple hospitilizations for abd pain; hysterectomy + adhesion removal;  meds: darvocett, cymbalta, mobic, vivelle patch, as needed= xanax, clonopin, maxalt, phenergan, levosin, amitiza & restoril.


shadowfax
New Member


Date Joined May 2007
Total Posts : 12
   Posted 6/11/2007 5:57 PM (GMT -7)   
Hey Floss,

I just read about your weather-related symptoms (you get panic attacks before tornadoes, etc.)

I too get really jumpy and aggitated right before a low pressure system hits...mostly during summer's inclement weather. It also affects my head, I feel like I have a bowling ball inside my brain, creating odd sensations of pressure. It totally sucks. Once it rains or high pressure systems move in, I'm fine.

Maybe we were cave man's weather watchers back in the day =)

LondonGirl22
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jan 2006
Total Posts : 1629
   Posted 6/12/2007 4:24 AM (GMT -7)   
I have anxiety/panic on top of my IBS so it all just interlinks with me. Getting an IBS flare causes me to be anxious especially if it is ruining my day.

Victoria x

Xx Sometimes we all have to go a little crazy just to stay sane xX


goddess0728
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2007
Total Posts : 81
   Posted 6/12/2007 11:24 AM (GMT -7)   
floss said...
I usually end up in the bathroom numerous times back to back and I get so nauseated and hot all over and I break out into a sweat; I normally don't vomit, but I sure feel like I am going to. (Trash can is beside me). I also feel like I am going to pass out while this is going on. Afterwards I have chills and feel so drained.


AHH! Floss! thank you for your post!

I have the exact same symptoms as quoted above! Although I don't think I have panic attacks, I do have intense anxiety at times when I am not near a toilet. I worry that this anxiety is going to turn into full fledged panic attacks .....I am so sorry you have these symptoms but it helping me to know that I am not the only one who gets all sweaty......I have to lie down on the floor sometimes afterwards because I am so drained and tired from the straining...

I am sorry you have these attacks but I really have to thank you for describing the above. I too mentioned the symptoms to my doctor but he seemed unconcerned when I said I FEEL like I am going to vomit but never do. For some weird reason, right after I sort of "dry wretch" everything settles down.

antemoe
New Member


Date Joined Jun 2007
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 6/17/2007 10:55 AM (GMT -7)   
I have the same symptoms as floss, I have suffered from anxiety and panic attacks for 6 years. then the bowel problem started, where same a hard stool is passes after MUCH PAIN(think you are dying)then hour of diareaha.Then I feel drained and tired and scared. I have had colonoscopy and things are all good there. Its scarey that you will have an attack not near a washroom, cause it hurts so bad that sometimes I scream!
anyone know of a cure????

SnowyLynne
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Date Joined Apr 2004
Total Posts : 1539
   Posted 6/17/2007 12:53 PM (GMT -7)   
I don't.
SnowyLynne


antemoe
New Member


Date Joined Jun 2007
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 6/17/2007 1:23 PM (GMT -7)   
I know, There is no cure! It`s just so strange that so many people have these symptoms and there are really no answers.

7Lil
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 3269
   Posted 6/17/2007 3:50 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi antemoe,
Welcome to HealingWell! :-)
IBS is a mystery, unfortunately. Hopefully soon the medical community will have some answers and a cure. We're all keeping our fingers crossed.
Co-Moderator for the IBS Forum
 
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