severe lower abdominal pain

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New Member

Date Joined Sep 2011
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 9/21/2011 12:59 AM (GMT -6)   
I apologize if this message isn't entirely in order. I have never done this before but I am literally at the end of my rope and do not know where to turn. I am 21 years old and have had my period since I was 11. I have experience irregular periods for 7 years. I usually get one period every 6-7 weeks, but I have gone 3-5 months without a period in the past few years. I have been on birth control pills; however, I have not been taking them for 2 years and have still experienced over 3 months without a period. I had it in October and did not have another period until February and it was brief then again in April and it was brief. I had two periods since then and currently have it.

I usually experience pain in the lower left side of my abdomen about a week or week an a half before my period. Also, I have diarrhea a few times before my period then when I get it. There is usually food in my stool as well. Aside from my menstrual discomfort, I experience lower abdominal pain almost every single day and it can become very severe. I have IBS and have undergone a colonoscopy which showed hemorrhoids but not much else, according to my doctor. I have had numerous tests done: pelvic ultrasounds, Upper and Lower GI's, etc.

Recently, I have noticed that the lower left side of my abdomen is swollen. This is the place where my pain almost always resides and it's really beginning to worry me. This severe pain and lump has been apparent for about 1 1/2 months.

Doctors wont listen to me and just keep telling me the abdominal pain is from the IBS and I should go on birth control for my irregular periods. I think something may be seriously wrong with me. Can anyone give me any advice or share a similar story because I am really scared and think there is more going on.

Please help if you can, it would be greatly appreciated.

Forum Moderator

Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 15831
   Posted 9/21/2011 1:42 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi Els, hello and welcome to Healing Well's chronic pain forum. I am sorry that you are having such a hard time with your medical problems. What is worse is when you feel the drs are not listening to you or taking you serious. None of us here are drs and we can only speak from our own personal experiences.

My first thoughts are perhaps it is time to start over with new drs, beginning with a new PCP and work your way up the ladder to seeing a new gyno for the problems with your periods. It may not be a bad idea to be seen by another gastro for another opinion either. Sometimes a fresh set of eyes will pick up things others has missed. Another option would to be seen at a teaching hospital. If you will look into CP101 here at the forum, I believe there is a list of teaching hospitals and perhaps there is one listed close to where you live.

My daughter-in-law suffers with IBS and I have seen her reduced to tears when an attack hits her. I also worked with a lady and she did the same thing. I do know it can be a very painful condition for some. It is very common for females to be put on birth control pills when they have irregular periods. I honestly think the drs have probably done what testing they consider reasonable and the results you have been given was based on the findings of the actual test, they would have no reason not to be honest about the results of your testing.

One thing about it, it never hurts to get a second opinion. Take care.
Moderator Chronic Pain Forum

Veteran Member

Date Joined Mar 2005
Total Posts : 1289
   Posted 9/21/2011 7:04 AM (GMT -6)   
i agree- time to see another doc. there are lots of docs out there- some good and some not so good. but one thing is for sure-- it's your body so make sure you are comfortable with the doctor's "bedside manner" and strategy to figure out what's going on. it may take you a few shots to find the right one but s/he's out there...use google, if you live in a large city a lot of magazines (like Phoenix mag) here in AZ will publish a "best docs" issue- not that i'd take that as gold but it's another resource...or as straydog said- teaching hospitals can be good also...good luck and i hope you feel better
37 year old male living in AZ. Diagnosed with Crohns at age of 15.
Currently on 20 mg prednisone. still taking Asacol. Done with Remicade- antibody level was over 8! Waiting for scope results to see about Humira or Cimzia.
In the middle of a bad flare now for 2's been one heck of a ride!

Veteran Member

Date Joined Oct 2009
Total Posts : 4970
   Posted 9/21/2011 9:07 AM (GMT -6)   
I concur.

My own case, not your isues but to demonstrate that you should get another opinion or maybe several from different fields of medicine:
I complained of lower abdominal pain for at least about 2 years, starting when I was in a bad wreck. It wasn't horrible, so my PCP, gastroenterologist, and later my gyne all ignored. I was on antibiotics for chronic recurring sinus infections about once a month, needed and still not finished with surgeries related to the wreck. Gastro doc did lots of tests, upper and lower endoscopies. Was in the hospital last year for Dx of abscess from diverticulitis. Recently had the same symptoms as the abscess, went to hospital, same Dx of abscess. Drain tube started leaking stool through and around the tube, and still they waited before deciding I needed to be gutted like a herring. I transferred to another hospital, needed lap appendectomy which surgeon said had had the abscess a very long time. A week later the colon started leaking where it had been slightly attached, peritonitis, more surgery to remove that piece.

I had a similar problem with pain in legs and feet. 3 docs said nothing wrong. Podiatrist Dx pain coming from back. Pain doc gave spinal steroid shot which stopped the pain.

So even some very good docs didn't catch everything. I still respect all of them. Sometimes the symptoms just aren't quite right for a diagnosis.
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