15 year old daughter newly diagnosed with IBS

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New Member

Date Joined Oct 2009
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 10/26/2009 5:22 PM (GMT -7)   
My 15 year old daughter has just had a complete GI work-up for abdominal pain, weight loss, nausea, wretching, headaches, and mostly constipation(some diarrhea).  The first episode occurred with her period and she was in bed for a few days.  The second also occurred with her period but this time the symptoms never went away-especially the pain.
With two hospitalizations, testing was done: upper endoscopy, colonoscopy, upper GI, small bowel follow through, ultrasound of abd. and pelvis, chest and abdominal x-rays, MRI of brain, MRI of pelvis and abdomen, gyne evaluation and multiple blood tests.  All of this was completely normal, accept the gynecologist said she has a chance of having endometriosis and started her on birth control pills.
It has been 2 months since the pain (mostly at her belly button extending to the pubic bone) became constant.  She is on a myriad of medications ( bentyl, senna, miralax, naproxen with pepcid, birth control, zofran, and amytriptiline) but remains debilitated. 
She receives tutoring from teachers at home (if she is not too sick). For the past 2 years, she was in the top 10 in her class, so this is an incredible change for her. Most of her communication with friends is via text messaging.
My biggest concern is her pain which usually gets worse at night.  She describes it as, "it feels like someone is punching me in the stomach." As the pain level goes up the scale, the nausea, wretching, severe headaches, and dizziness begin. At this point I feel absolutely helpless!  It breaks my heart.
I have read that amytriptiline takes weeks to really begin working and she has only been on it 1 week.  I bought some peppermint oil time -released capsules and probiotics.  Does anyone have any experience with these?  I feel like I have to do something until, hopefully, this antidepressant begins working.
Also, since the severe constipation is adding to the pain, does anyone have any suggestions for this? Sometimes it is 4-5 days until she has an excuciatingly painful BM.
Any input would be greatly, greatly appreciated.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jul 2004
Total Posts : 1293
   Posted 10/28/2009 10:24 AM (GMT -7)   
Sorry to hear your daughter is suffering.
Senna, might not be a good thing.
They need to find out about the endometriosis.
The amytriptiline may help the pain when she gets use to it and it can be used at low doses. What dose is she on?
The "peppermint oil time -released capsules and probiotics" may help also some.
If she had upper gi issues the peppermint might not be a good thing.
What probiotics would she take?
Psychological treatments can help greatly with the pain, even though IBS is a real gut disorder, its connected to the brain. There is a very close connection to the gut and the brain and how they function.
somethings to read. These are from the International Foundation for Functional Gastro disorders.

Welcome to aboutKidsGI.org. On this site you will find support and information about digestive disorders in kids and teens.

Functional gastrointestinal (GI) and motility disorders are common among children. Signs of these disorders include many symptoms that are long-lasting. They range from stomach pains to nausea or vomiting to bowel problems.


How do I know if my child really has an upset stomach, or is trying to avoid going to school?



Dr Walker is a behavioral scientist, clinician, and educator. She is Director of the Division of Adolescent Medicine, Professor of Pediatrics, and Professor of Psychology, at Vanderbilt University. Her research focuses on children’s chronic pain syndromes, and adjustment in families of children with chronic illness or disability.


Hypnotherapy for Abdominal Pain in Children

The researchers concluded that 85% of the children who received hypnotherapy had a successful treatment outcome; only 25% of the group who received standard care experienced this result. Clearly, it has been shown in this study that hypnotherapy is an extremely helpful treatment option for children who experience chronic abdominal pain from either IBS or FAP.


There is also a lot of information here on Kids and IBS. From diet to treatments to causes all kinds of info, from one of my own websites. I have had IBS since 10 and am 49.



I am not a doctor. All information I present is for educational purposes only and should not be subsituted for the advise of a qualified health care provider.

Please make sure you have your symptoms diagnosed by a medical practitioner or a doctor.

New Member

Date Joined Oct 2009
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 10/28/2009 10:53 AM (GMT -7)   
Thanks for replying Shawn 12.
The senna was prescribed by her doctor.  Are you thinking that it may be too irritating? Her constipation is so severe (she sometimes vomits and then goes).  We also have her on Miralax.
As far as the endometriosis, she was going to have a laporscopy(only difinitive way to diagnose this) this past week, but we cancelled.  Her gynecologist is less sure of endometriosis as a diagnosis since her last hospialization where she required narcotics for the severe pain.  Also, she is really not in a state to undergo surgery at this point and we have been told that it may cause scar tissue buildup and more pain. Birth control pills would be used following a positive diagnosis by surgery anyway to dissipate the lesions. 
She is on 25mg of the antidepressent.  After almost 2 weeks, it has not made a difference yet.
The probiotic brand is acidofolus ?spelling with other cells added.
We could not get an appt. until Nov. 24 to start looking into behavioral modifications--hopefully hypnotherapy.
Do these people talk to you about nutrition as well?
I feel like she was diagnosed and we were scooted along--can't even reach GI doc.
Again thank you for your suggestions and I will check out these websites!

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jul 2004
Total Posts : 1293
   Posted 10/28/2009 12:22 PM (GMT -7)   
Yes, the senna might be irritating.
There is also something you could try called FruitEze which they use in many senior centers for constipation.
Also maybe a sitz marker tests for motility and transit studies.
The scar tissue could be a bad thing either way. I am not as familar with endometriosis as IBS or some of the other functional gi disorders. One thing is be very careful with narcotics and IBS, because that can make the pain worse long term and cause more constipation, just to know about, not that she is on them, but even for future reference.
"She is on 25mg of the antidepressent.  After almost 2 weeks, it has not made a difference yet."
It might take up to a month possibly. They also seem to help 1 in 3 people statistically and it maybe added to other forms of treatments. Let me know later about how that works out.
"The probiotic brand is acidofolus ?spelling with other cells added."
You might actually try the activia they advertise a lot on TV as well as perhaps Digestive advantage.
This is a video and some info on probiotics and IBS.
Only one starin has been tested and shown to work, although its worth trying others and is unlikely to make anything worse. Mainly they cannhelp reduce gas and hence pain and some bloating and may make it easier to go.

Probiotics in the Treatment of IBS

A number of researchers have been looking at whether probiotics might improve symptoms of IBS. Probiotics are live micro-organisms found in foods and supplements that can have a beneficial effect.

"The review study concluded that B. infantis 35624, based on current evidence, appears to be an effective treatment for some people with IBS. Other probiotics may prove beneficial in the future, but well designed studies are needed first."
There is a hypnotherapy for home use for both kids and young adults as well as adults. I am very familar with it and it helped me personally with pain especially, but all my ibs symptoms. I do work on this therapist website as a webmater so you know. However he is very well know in the IBS communities and has helped thousands of people. I would have to ask him if the child one or the adult one would be better suited for your daughter. The therpaist has to know about IBS and they use specific therapy for IBS, but it doesn't have to be with a live therapist all that much, just fyi. If you decidie to see one live let me know also, as there is a list of trained ones.
The child program is for kids IBS Audio Program 60®: Treatment of Irritable Bowel Syndrome in children using guided imagery is for Ages 8 – 13, so it might be better to go the adult route one. I can personally highly recommend this and wish I did it when I was a lot younger. Other forms are CBT and mindfulness meditation, but they are more work just fyi, not that they would not be benefical, but personally I would try the HT firsts as its faster and almost no work then then listening.
"Do these people talk to you about nutrition as well?"
I have a ton of information on that as well. My personal website. I have IMPORTANT information on eating and IBS I will have to gather and post for you. I am also a chef for the last 25 years.

IBS and diet
Diet, food and eating can affect symptoms in IBS. Many people with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) notice that their symptoms appear to get worse following a meal. They may wonder if they have a dietary allergy or intolerance. More confusing, they may notice that a food seems to upset them on one day but not another.

also again
Hypnosis for IBS
There are some major misconceptions on why someone would try clinical gut directed hypnotherapy for IBS a physical disorder. But it works for most people.
There is also this worth watching.
September 1, 2009
Topic: "Psychological Approaches to IBS Symptom Management"
Presenter: Stephan Weinland, Ph.D.
Instructor of Medicine

<!-- -->Watch / Hide video
Listen / Hide - audio only
I also recommend you come to the chat with the experts and ask question on Nov 3, its free and one of the world authorities on IBS and other functional disorders and he knows a lot about kids and hard to treat disorders.
One of your biggest assets with dealing with and treating IBS is good and accurate information.  However it is a extremely complex condition which is not fully understood yet, but they have made big strides in progress on it.
Hope all this helps.

I am not a doctor. All information I present is for educational purposes only and should not be subsituted for the advise of a qualified health care provider.

Please make sure you have your symptoms diagnosed by a medical practitioner or a doctor.

New Member

Date Joined Jan 2010
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 1/4/2010 5:24 AM (GMT -7)   
I am sooo sorry to hear your daughter is unwell and would like to offer some advice. I can only tell you what has helped me. The first thing that helped me the most was eliminating all dairy products from my diet. I was badly constipated for weeks and then would have spasms and have D. I later found out I was lactose intolerant and then my mother was diagnosed with coelicas which means she cannot eat gluten. I too cut out all gluten and felt much better, my guts didn't bloat nay more and my constipation went away. I also dont drink with meals and dont eat gassy foods liek beans etc. Also if your daughter is constipated, try probiotics. These have been a life saver for me. I take bifidus and lacotbascillus. They have to be 15 million live organisms and you can buy them on the net. Make sure they are refridgerated as this keeps them alive. I take bifoviden and lactoviden. These got my bowels going again. Please try these things. I hope they help her. I have had this IBS since I was fourteen and am only just now finding out what;s wrong and what helps. Every one is dIfferent, but I hope this can help in some way. Good luck.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jul 2004
Total Posts : 1293
   Posted 1/4/2010 10:04 AM (GMT -7)   
It turned out her Daughter had some kind of pinched nerve I believe and the last I heard she was doing much better.
I am not a doctor. All information I present is for educational purposes only and should not be subsituted for the advise of a qualified health care provider.

Please make sure you have your symptoms diagnosed by a medical practitioner or a doctor.

New Member

Date Joined Dec 2009
Total Posts : 8
   Posted 1/5/2010 7:23 AM (GMT -7)   
Hello Hope sorry to hear about your daughter.

Did u check for lactose intolerance, that would give severe stomach cramping too.

If your daughter doest not have lactose intolerance,

you could give her a glass of drinking hot milk in the bed time, this will alleviate the constipation and will give good sleep and energy.

But make sure she does not have lactose intolerance for the aforesaid symptoms.

I know how it is, am sorry again. Donot worry it will be alright soon, I have seen people healed without symptoms.

Boil the milk in a vessel for 10 - 15 mins... settle it to become drinking hot not just warm. Donot use microwave.

Post Edited (Bael) : 1/5/2010 7:27:38 AM (GMT-7)

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