Long time sufferer, first time poster

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Regular Member

Date Joined Jan 2010
Total Posts : 44
   Posted 6/24/2010 12:14 PM (GMT -7)   
I believe I may have posted on a thread awhile ago in passing ,but never really introduced myself.

I'm 28 years old living in Vancouver, Canada and have had chronic diarrhea since I was around 15 or 16 years old.

I have spells when it gets worse than other times, and other symptoms include really bad gas, stomach bloating, cramps...a very 'warm' feeling in my backside before I have to use the john, and many others.

I'd gotten so used to having diarrhea that I just took it as commonplace and I really can't remember when I started reacting 'immediately' to certain types of food.

If I have a subway sandwich, or anything from a Mcdonalds (especially the fries) I will need to use the facilities within 10 minutes (and it will almost guaranteed be an emergency). Obviously, for this reason I don't eat those foods often anymore. I did eat subway nearly daily at my old job due to the convenience factor. (I know I should probably NEVER eat them, but if I eat them in the comfort of my own home once every 6 months or so I'm not so worried).

Now, to get to my current status. I am nearing the end of my EI benefits (employment insurance) after being laid off of work last year, and need a new job.

Big issues:
I have severe anxiety issues that are not being treated currently with anything but 'emergency' ativan use.
I am petrified of leaving my house and needing to use a public toilet. I have developed an embarassment of the noise created by some of my bowel movements, and the idea of crapping in a room with other people has never appealed to me. I had kids at a young age look over the short doors in the washrooms and watch me go to the bathroom 'as a joke' and that I suppose has always been a bad memory as well.
There are other childhood memories I could share, but for now choose not to.

I don't remember the last time I ever used an OTC medication such as loperamide, but have recently bought some.

I had dental surgery on Monday to remove a decayed tooth and have been on tylenol #3's off and on for weeks up to the surgery. Tuesday I had taken 3 of those tylenol 3s over an 8 hour period as it was a very painful day (and that's a lot of codeine for me personally to take).

It was also the first day in probably 10 years that I didn't have a single bowel movement. The anti-diarrheal effects of the codeine astound me.

However, I have not had any painkillers since that third tablet late Tuesday night.

Since then:

Wednesday I had 2 very pleasant solid movements in the first 8 hours of the day, followed by a more loose (more familiar) movement later in the day.

Finally before bed, my diarrhea had returned.

I woke up today, and have had diarrhea bouts 5 times since I was up at 7am (it's noon for me now). I realize this is not the same as having food poisoning or something that causes one to go once every 5 minutes, or just not leaving the bowl for hours at a time...i have had that happen in the past too. But this 10-15 movements per day (composed of 80% water) is becoming too difficult to deal with.

My doctor is absent-minded and currently more concerned with my mental health (and finding me a psychiatrist) and telling me 'it's just IBS' than actually offering suggestions.

Is it a good idea for me to start using Imodium, even in the short term while I figure out what the hell is wrong with me? Or because I've had issues for so long, should I deal with the diarrhea in the interim and press my doctor for bowel testing?

This affects many aspects of my life, as it seems to go hand in hand with my anxiety and my growing case of agoraphobia....I never want to leave my house (as I fear an impending heart attack due to a ridiculous case of tachycardia, and/or crapping myself on the street with no help in sight).

I should also add that my diarrhea has gotten a lot worse since I was laid off. I used to love the ability to use the 'staff' washrooms at work when I got promoted (in a company of 1500, I really preferred the privacy of the single toilet washrooms as opposed to the very public alternatives). I feel that having that 'private' option at work helped a lot, eased some anxiety and as a result reduced the incidences I needed the washroom. Some days I didn't need it at all, but most days (at least after subway) I did.

This doesn't explain why I am in constant need at home...

Pleasure to make your acquaintance with such intimate details. "Haha".

Post Edited (flames23) : 6/24/2010 1:17:34 PM (GMT-6)

Regular Member

Date Joined Jan 2010
Total Posts : 44
   Posted 6/24/2010 2:28 PM (GMT -7)   
I see 16 views with no posts :P

My apologies for my first post being a novel. I have been guilty of skipping over posts of this length in the past myself!

Regular Member

Date Joined Feb 2010
Total Posts : 114
   Posted 6/24/2010 7:27 PM (GMT -7)   
I'm so sorry that you are going through this. I am looking for answers myself. I have only been suffering for a few months, but already don't want to leave the house. I have a lot of pain with this and the bms do not seem to help ease the pain.
My GI doctor put me on Symax Duotabs a couple of weeks ago. It might be something for you to look into. I could not tolerate the side effects myself, but I think it works well for others.
I have been reading about the hypnosis suggested by shawn on this board. I think it would be worth a try if a qualified person can be found.
All the best to you! Again, I'm sorry for your suffering so long.

New Member

Date Joined Jun 2010
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 6/24/2010 9:08 PM (GMT -7)   

first, I am so sorry for you as I definately know what you're going through...I'm 20 and have had IBS my entire life. Mine is alternating but I went through a year or so long period of time where I had horrible diarrhea 5 to 30 minutes after I ate ANYTHING..and I mean anything. On average, 5 times a day. I also was going through severe anxiety and my emetophobia (fear of throwing up..super weird, huh?) and was seeking therapy for it. What advice I can give to you is to try to seek talk therapy, not necesarily a psychiatrist, who may be more inclined to just place you on medication than trying to teach you how to deal with your anxiety on your own. Talk therapy changed my life and my total outlook on how I deal with stressful situations, and helped ease my diarrhea that was not associated with eating (I am one of those people whose bowels freak out when I freak out haha). Also, I don't know if it is sold in Canada, but a product called Digestive Advantage did wonders for decreasing the amount of times I went per day. It's probiotics, and while I still have alternating c/d, its not nearly as bad as it USED to be. I would definately give that a shot..and its not expensive at all.
Hope things turn around for you!

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 1201
   Posted 6/25/2010 9:01 AM (GMT -7)   
Sorry to hear you are not well. For me, I found by trial and error that yeast, too many grains(wheat) and sugar (processed or baked foods particularly) were trouble for me. I feel so much better after giving up any products with yeast, or any other hidden chemicals and preservatives. The questions/suspects I would have for you are:
Have you tried an elimination diet? Do you stay away from all artificial sweeteners, even those hidden in low fat foods? -avoid all alcohol and soda?-do you eat a lot of high sugar fruit?- a lot of bread?
-are you on good probiotics?(just yogurt won't cut it)-have you been checked for gluten intolerance? Were you ever on antibiotics (even as a young child) before your symptoms first appeared? Perhaps you have an overabundance of yeast and/or bad bacteria in your gut. Foods like grains/sugar will feed that and perpetuate the symptoms. Just throwing out ideas. Not saying any, or all of these could be the problem.
The foods that used to trouble me, I can now eat in moderation, now that my gut has healed.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jul 2004
Total Posts : 1293
   Posted 6/25/2010 10:20 AM (GMT -7)   
I would try to use the Imodium and see if it helps with the D.

There is a quite a bit to go over with you. There is some important information you should know about in regards to IBS and the brain here.

Part of the "fear" of leaving the house can trigger the bodies fight or flight responce and this can actually trigger the IBS.

somethings to read then I will get back to you.

Gut Feelings: The Mind-Body Connection


its not all in your head


Understanding the fight or flight responce


This fight or flight responce can happen faster then you can conciously think about it.

Modern IBS research understand IBS as a brain gut axis disorder. The brain and the gut are extremely intertwined and connected. The gut can upset the brain and the brain can upset the gut.

as for your doctor recommending a psychiatrist. 1 CBT has been shown to help a lot of IBSers as has gut directed hypnotherapy.

Why see a Psychologist when the Diagnosis is IBS? - S. Weinland

Many people experience distress and anxiety when their doctor makes a recommendation that they see a psychologist. This reaction often comes from the belief that a referral to a psychologist carries with it assumptions about symptoms being “all in your head” or the result of “mental illness”. These are two of the biggest misconceptions about the practice of psychology in a medical setting, and they can often stand in the way of patients achieving a meaningful reduction in symptoms. In this column, I hope to dispel some of these misconceptions around psychology in a medical setting, and in doing so communicate a few of the benefits you might be able to achieve in working with a psychologist to address your symptoms of IBS.


This is from a major IBS known world wide

"psychophysiological arousal is the core of treating functional gi disorders. There is so much distress, anxiety, antisipatory anxiety, and negative reaction to symptoms, that calming the mind and body often makes a significant difference to symptoms."

The above doesn't mean its all in the head or that they haven't found problems in IBS, they have, but the above is connected to the physical problems they have found in IBS.

Regular Member

Date Joined Jan 2010
Total Posts : 44
   Posted 6/26/2010 3:26 PM (GMT -7)   
Thank you for your replies. Shawn, I will read through those materials you have courteously provided for me. Much obliged.

Kim, I wanted to acknowledge your reply, and I will answer your questions when I have a few more minutes to spare.

Take care :)

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jul 2004
Total Posts : 1293
   Posted 6/26/2010 5:41 PM (GMT -7)   

Hopefully they help. I did almost ten years of research on IBS it is complex for sure. But some of the connections they have figured out and these things can help. If you have any questions let me know and we can also go over some other aspects of it all.

also so you know yeast infection is NOT IBS and there are serious problems with some of the info out there on it.
Forum Moderator
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.

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