Hi Connie and Therese,
Regarding the 'purge', I really don't think that my body is supposed to operate like this and I find it quite unnerving.
As expected, over a period of a few to several days, the Ascites fills my abdominal cavity with fluid. I don't know by volume how much it is but it adds 3 to 7 pounds to my weight and 2 to 4 inches on my waist. Early on in the Ascites, I became Septic twice with doctors using Cipro as the antibiotic.
By purging I am referring to a day (usually 12 hours) of almost pure fluid diarrhea, occurring every 5 to 10 days. During that 12 hours, I am in the bathroom every 10 to 45 minutes and expelling what seems like a tremendous volume of yellow fluid with virtually no solids. (sorry for the details) At the end of the 'purge' day, my weight and waist are both back down and I am again able to comfortably bend to tie my shoes.
In my reading, I have found no normal physical method under which this can occur. Therefore, I am concerned that there are tears, leaks or whatever, allowing this tidal flow. That raises additional questions of what potential organ damage may be additionally occurring.
In answer to your diet and medication questions, I watch my sodium, I don't eat red meat, I eat a lot of fruits and a reasonable amount of vegetables, I eat 5 small meals a day and drink water enough water to stay well-hydrated (often with a big splash of real Pomegranate juice; Pom is my favorite; my folks have trees in AZ so I'm spoiled). I am on 30 to 40 ml of Lactolose twice daily (I was on Xifaxan with the same purge pattern), 20 mg Propranolol three times daily (for Varices) and I take 1/2 of a Benadryl before bed (2 to 6 am). I get some exercise working on my house (not enough).
So in closing, I don't have what I wish that I could give you: an un-intrusive draining method. I will see my Dr. on the 9th and press for an explanation because the purging is very unsettling to me. I will let you know what I find out.
Therese, you're a real gem of a caregiver -- keep up the good work, and take care of yourself and keep your spirit strong. As a self-caregiver, I can only imagine what it takes.
And Connie, having read so many of your posts, I have an idea of what you face daily. I can only hope to keep as strong and focussed as you as I deal with this disease and the transplant.
Be well, my thoughts and prayers are with you, John
PS - Everyone, again if you know of reading materials or references that might help me understand, I will be most appreciative.
I have to get up the creek! Now where's that paddle?