Posted 5/18/2008 8:52 PM (GMT -6)
I have always been a very healthy person. I used to be thin as a child/teeenager, but once I had my first child, I had struggled with my weight. At my heaviest I was 180 lbs at 5'8" tall. I had the normal childhood illnesses like chicken pox & strep throat (which I still get every time it goes around.) I hadn't been to the doctor in years & years lately. Then last year everything changed.
I started having health problems a year ago, at age 33. I became sick with the flu & a bad cold in May of last year. I began having fluid in my ears (that has not gone away, even with prednisone, so I have to have surgery on this soon) which was really annoying. I figured it would go away. Then I have this bad pain in my shoulder, was told it was a pinched nerve. 3 days later, I got a really high fever & was really ill. The pain in my shoulder was not leatting up & I remember laying on the floor crying in the shower my shoulder hurt so bad & I felt so sick. I eventually went to urgent care (I hate going to doctors) & had a high fever & a severe kidney infection and was put on Cipro for 3 weeks. I started having pains in my pelvic area & flank. Ran some tests, they thought stones, no stones. Kidneys fine. I was dropping weight like crazy. Then about 6 weeks into this after I had lost about 20 lbs, my brother was diagnosed with cancer, so they ran more tests. abd & pelvic CT scan, pelvic ulstrasound, blood tests, everything was coming back fine.(except ovarian cyst(s).) They did cystology or whatever on my urine, no cancer. I was still having blood in my urine for a little while, and some crystals one time, but then everything cleared up.
Then they decided to do a fecal occult blood test. It was positive. They had asked me before about my bowel habits, but I didn't have diarrhea. It had gotten softer & definitely more frequent, but since I was normally constipated all my life (going maybe 2 times per WEEK), going 2 times per day was a relief. I started paying attention to my stool & noticed blood a few times, not a lot, but now & again. It was not bright red, but darker & sometimes mixed with the stool. Now they were rushing me to colonoscopy/EGD. The scope found some small ulcers & inflammation in my colon. Didn't go to my ileum I guess. I had this done by a surgeon. I was told I had colitis, and it would clear up after a month on Azulfidine. I was able to maintain my weight nicely while on Azulfidine. After getting off it a month later, I started losing weight again. (I lost 50 lbs in total.) I started having problems digesting things. My pain pills & some headache medication would not digest. In December I went in to get my back cracked & when the osteo saw my body & noticed how much weight I was losing again, he put me back on it saying I may have IBD, maybe crohn's. So I stayed on Azulfidine daily. Then in January I started to get sick. Diarrhea bad, dehydration, ending up in ER with low potassium not being able to hold myself up. Massive exhaustion. High WBC, but not too high. Some labs off, but not by a whole lot. I was having 6-10 BMs a day at this time. At one of my ER visits I received some steriods in my IV and this really helped squelch the diarrhea for a while. It slowed me down to 4-6 times a day & firmer. I only had diarrhea for a very short time. Never really had diarrhea much before January at all.
I was sent to a GI. She felt I had IBD, but wanted to do some testing. She sent me for a small bowel follow through. This came back with inflammation consistent with IBD. She said she was pretty sure I had IBD, she just wasn't sure which one (ulcerative colitis or crohn's disease) & wanted to do a colonoscopy again, along with biopsies of my ileum & cecum, which didn't seem to be done last time. I started having this "lump" in my lower abd., mostly at night. Once I have a BM in the morning, it leaves, which leads me to believe it was caused by stool somewhere in route. It's like a polish sausage pushing through my skin to the right & below my navel. Kinda reminds me of when I was pregnant & you had legs & arms showing in areas of you belly. In the meantime while waiting for my c-scope appt, she put me on 20 mg of prednisone per day. I was able gain some weight. I had lots of energy. But I still was going often, but no diarrhea & no blood & just a little mucus. I also had gurgling issues & cramping. I feel like I have to go all day long, I have the urge. Sometimes I feel like I am not finished going as well.
So I had my colonoscopy & it was all clear this time. Now my GI is thinking I had a bad bacterial infection that is now giving me IBS. It's all so confusing.... I go see her for a follow up this week & wonder if there are some good questions I should ask....
Now that I am off the prednisone (have been for nearly 2 weeks), and off that horrible low fiber, low residue diet, I am having stool that is like gravel, very small hard pieces, with lots & lots of mucus. I have had problems digesting some things again, I noticed a large piece of tomato the other day. I did have a small amount of blood yesterday mixed in with the mucus. The mucus sometimes has been green & is really disgusting. I am going 2-4 times a day currently.
Has anyone else here gotten their IBS after a bacterial infection? Has anyone lost weight like this? Are these normal symptoms of IBS?
I am kinda at a loss & not sure what is going on with me....
Live for today, for tomorrow you might just get hit by a semi.