Upset Stomach -- Any Suggestions?

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Keeping the Faith
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2008
Total Posts : 77
   Posted 2/7/2009 6:14 PM (GMT -6)   
Hello Everyone,
 
Does anyone have a suggestion about what to take if your stomach is really upset from antibiotics?  My daughter started taking minocycline and cipro a week ago and her stomach has been upset pretty badly.  The doctor suggested taking them with food (not dairy products) and this doesn't help either.  So we started an antacid, but no luck yet.  We're open to your suggestions.  Thanks!
 
Lisa
 
P.S.  She has lyme, babesia, and bartonella (diagnosed lyme and babesia 10/08, and bartonella just a week ago)

ticker
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Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 9208
   Posted 2/7/2009 6:19 PM (GMT -6)   

Hi Lisa.  I am sorry your daughter is feeling crummy.  As someone who has had Babesiosis, I know it can cause extreme nausea.  Maybe eating some kind of sandwich with protein could help.  Bread with protein sometimes helped me.

Another thing I found helpful was chewing on papaya tablets.  You can get these at most healthfood stores and they are very inexpensive.  Ginger capsules can also work, but when I was really nauseous I cound not stand the smell of them.

I hope this passes soon for her.  I think nausea is one of the hardest symptoms to deal with.

 

Keeping the Faith
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2008
Total Posts : 77
   Posted 2/7/2009 6:24 PM (GMT -6)   
Thanks for the advice, Ticker. It really just started with the new meds. She was previously treating just the lyme and babesia and was taking zithromax, plaquenil, mepron, and artemisinin. The doctor stopped them and started the new meds for the bartonella. He believes this is what is keeping her from walking. We're up for anything at this point. We'll see him again in a few weeks. Maybe the next step is IV. She's been suffering since July 08 when she was misdiagnosed (diagnosis "imagining her symptoms" lol). So we wasted a few months before we got to see a lyme specialist in October. We just saw a lyme neurologist and I really liked him. He actually imitated the way she was walking before she stopped walking so it was a relief to know that someone else had this horrific walk. We were so sick of hearing "but lyme patients don't walk like this". Everyone is different as we all know! Lisa

hopingToFindCure
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Date Joined Nov 2008
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   Posted 2/7/2009 6:37 PM (GMT -6)   
Try some kefir in the mornings.

Take vitamins / supplements in the mornings.

Include the probiotic then too.


Eat large lunch. Pop the abx.

Eat large dinner.

Take the abx with saltines before bed.

Good luck. I find I'm very groggy in the morning due to the ABX fatigue.

I still have terrible diarrea.

You also may want to try a non-generic form of all medications. That has made all the difference.

seeingstars
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2008
Total Posts : 266
   Posted 2/7/2009 7:04 PM (GMT -6)   
I'm sure you already know this but I wanted to say just in case-

Some medicines are not absorbed when you use antacids. You have to take them some time after the abx. I agree with hopingToFindCure about the kefir. That's a good probiotic that starts to work right away. I am one of these people that does not like to use an antacid. I think there are better approaches. I hope some of the posts here give you something that works.

Is she really drinking a lot of water? That could help wash it out of the stomach faster. And I would definitely say eat food with those abx. Maybe too, her stomach is still ripped up from taking the meds on an empty stomach. It may take time for it to heal.

Keeping the Faith
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2008
Total Posts : 77
   Posted 2/8/2009 7:21 AM (GMT -6)   
Dear HopingtofindCure and seeingstars,
 
Thank you.  I am going to try this schedule.  She has been on a potent probiotic from the naturopath, but I have been giving it to her in the afternoon between meds.  The antacid and meds are separated according to directions from the pharmacy.  She takes Vitamin D (because she is low) and Vitamin C (for bruising).  So I will give the probiotic and vitamins in the morning -- apart from each other, and then do the meds in the afternoon and evening.
 
Drinking has always been a problem for her.  I'm sure this isn't helping with flushing her out.  She will eat a large lunch, but dinner is always a problem because she is full from lunch.  Breakfast, too, is a tiny meal.  I'll try the crackers at night with the last dose.
 
I think seeingstars is correct -- I bet her stomach is raw from the way we were taking the meds in the beginning.  Thank you for both of your input.
 
Lisa

ticker
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Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 9208
   Posted 2/8/2009 8:51 AM (GMT -6)   

Lisa, does your daughter take her meds twice daily?  If so, many doctors want them spaced out as evenly as possible such as twelve hours apart.  You may want to ask the doctor or pharmacist about this.

The cycline class of antibiotics can cause stomach issues.  In my opinion, eating crackers with a dose is not enough.  I think it is better to take the meds right after a decent meal.  It is also important to take the meds with a lot of water.

I am glad you like her doctor.  Finding a good doctor can be half the battle. 


Keeping the Faith
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2008
Total Posts : 77
   Posted 2/8/2009 10:34 AM (GMT -6)   
Yes, she does take them twice daily, and it is getting harder to figure out how to space them out 12 hours apart. She would need to take the first dose in the a.m., then do her vitamins two to three hours afterwards, then the probiotic. This is opposite of what is suggested above.

She tends to eat a very light breakfast, large lunch, and light dinner. Drinking? I'm lucky to have her get down five drinks a day.

Keeping the Faith
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2008
Total Posts : 77
   Posted 2/8/2009 2:12 PM (GMT -6)   

Hi Gracie's Mom,

Wow, your daughter has been through a lot, too.  I feel sorry for these kids because they are missing out a lot on life.  I wish I could take this from her and be sick with it myself.  Afterall, I lived that part of my life, and it was fun, and I want her to have fun, too.

She is 16 years old, soon to be 17 in June.  At the beginning, on 7/31/08, that evening her leg muscles got tighter and tighter, and it made it impossible for her to walk properly.  She was still walking, though.  Her then pediatrician thought she might have ehrlichiosis (which after our visit to Dr. K found out that she more than likely did) so she put her on 10 days of doxy.  While on the doxy, she began to stand straighter and her knees didn't dip as far down when she walked.  After the 10 days, the ped dr decided to take her off the doxy and said that if it were ehrlichiosis, then she would be 100% better.  Even though she was showing signs of improvement, the witch would not refill the doxy.  Well, within four days, she went to somewhat walking down to a squatting position.  She never got her strength back after that.

There is a lot of story in between, but we did switch doctors to a new internist who did a western blot and saw that she did in fact have lyme.  So she put her back on doxy.  We made the appt with Dr. J and got in on a cancellation on 10/31/08.  He thought she had bartonella at that time so he prescribed rifampin, zithromax, and plaquenil.  But the tests came back saying that she had babesia instead.  So she went on zithromax, plaquenil, and mepron along with artemisinin.  We saw very tiny improvements, but were told that this is the way it goes -- slow improvement and on the meds for anywhere from six to 12 months for a full recovery.  That was music to our ears.

A friend of mine is an occupational therapist at a well-known rehab facility in CT, and she wanted to come over to evaluate her.  She did and found that Marissa was not walking at all (even though we were told to use a walker), that she could not stand or walk, so what she really needed was a wheelchair.  Dr. J's office did not want us getting one for fear that she would give up on trying.  But her "walk" wasn't anything close to a walk, in fact she was doing more harm to her body than anything else.  So we went to the rehab facility and saw a physiatrist who wanted an EMG done to see why Marissa could walk on her knees perfectly straight, but could not stand on her feet at all. 

I decided to take Dr. J's recommendation and see Dr. K.  We were so happy that we did.  His clinical diagnosis found that she in fact has bartonella, citing a case of a veterinarin from MA that he treated with the SAME awkward gait, and was back to walking within two weeks after treatment.  Well, since Marissa is not walking at all, we know it is going to take longer.  He took her off all meds and put her on minocycline and cipro.  He wants to see her in one month, drew more blood, etc.  Since she started this course of antibiotics, her muscles have become weaker (cannot walk on knees any more) and now does the combat crawl.  It is getting worse and worse every step we take.

She had a period of bad herxes last week, and now seems better emotionally.  We do go to physical therapy as we always have.  But to answer your question (finally), she says she is very weak and that is why she can't stand.

I told Dr. K about the upset stomach, and he wants her to continue with the meds at all cost.  Marissa gets more and more upset each time she takes her dosage.  They said we can give her antacid, but no luck yet.  Maybe this feeling is from the babesia?  I don't know.  I think I know a lot of what is going on until I read the posts and realize I don't know anything yet!

Did you daughter stop walking or have difficulty walking?  I spoke to another person from this site and she told me she had bartonella and lost the ability to walk, too.  She is walking again, thank God, but it took months before it got to that point. This scares me.

Between the two doctors I have faith that they will get her back to her old self.  She has had ehrlichiosis, has babesia but Dr. K said she had enough treatment now to kill off that co-infection, and now has bartonella which is being treated along with the lyme.  I don't know what he tested her for, but I hope he is testing to see if the babesia is still present.  I would hate to leave that alone and find out that it is still going strong.

Oh, and to answer your other question, she said her stomach feels very "acidy".  But today she had a craving for orange juice.  Go figure!

Lisa


IH8Ticks
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2009
Total Posts : 296
   Posted 2/8/2009 2:34 PM (GMT -6)   
What type of antacid is she taking? Is really an antacid or an acid reducer? Antacids are often short-lived. You will probably have better results with an acid reducer such as OTC Zantac or prescription Protonix. These will help reduce stomach acid throughout the day. I don't know what is safe for someone her age.

Diet is also extremely important. I avoid almost all fruits because I can't handle the acidity. I can't touch caffeine. You can look up dietary suggestions for people with acid reflux or GERD to find more tips and what to avoid. She will probably need to go on a very bland diet until her stomach settles down. Once it does, start other foods only very gradually. If she starts eating more irritating food, like fruit, it may not bother her at first. It may take a few days to start making her feel sick again. Start slowly, and watch what happens over time.

I've been dealing the nausea and stomach issues for almost 10 years now. I can tell you that it takes a little while for the stomach to heal itself and the nausea to subside. It will take longer on the abx.

sojourner
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2006
Total Posts : 1173
   Posted 2/8/2009 3:38 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Keeping the Faith,

I am sorry that your daughter is not well right now. It sounds like you are doing a great job of bringing a team approach to her treatment. It's these little details that come up that can upset the routine. You've been given some great advice.

I agree w/Ticker. It's hard when our children are not feeling well, esp. stomach upset. Heather had allot of issues w/nausea from both the migraine, then when we was on abx to the pathogens themselves. It was delicate and can still be if that train goes off track.

Mino can be a tough antibiotic. Our naturopath had Heth taking enzyme-assisted ginger rhizomes (Zingiber officinale) daily, which helped w/nausea, as well as Thorne's Medi-Clear in an organic strawberry blend that helped w/inflammation of the gut. Helped heal alot of the food allergies just by getting the inflammation under control.

During that time, I would give Heth her probiotics at bedtime with a good carb; like an apple, to help transport so that her day could be balanced out differently. It is alot for our children to take in so much.

She had to eat a full meal before her abx in order to be spared the gut flare.

Blessings,
Sojourner

IH8Ticks
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2009
Total Posts : 296
   Posted 2/8/2009 3:57 PM (GMT -6)   
I've had a couple of doctors suggest dipping pills in olive oil to lessen stomach irritation. It's never helped my nausea, but it does make the pills go down easier. The Flagyl I'm on right now is generic. It sticks in my mouth and throat and burns. The olive oil makes it go right down. I just throw this out there.

Keeping the Faith
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2008
Total Posts : 77
   Posted 2/8/2009 5:23 PM (GMT -6)   
Thanks so much for your stories and advice.  I am going to check with the dr to see about the protonix.  My husband is on that for his stomach issues, and he said many times that she should probably be on it, too.
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