help... basic ibs questions

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New Member

Date Joined Nov 2005
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 11/4/2005 1:59 PM (GMT -7)   
I need your help.  I'm a manager of someone with IBS. She has been out continuously now for 6 weeks due to diarrhea.  I'm being asked by our FMLA and HR dept to verify the condition.  The employee was diagnosed in 1998 and has always just been out intermittently (a few days out every couple of months or so).  This is the first time she's been out continuously for 6 weeks.  The timing is unfortunate because our company recently filed for bankcruptcy and there are rumors that sick time will be going away.  This is why our FMLA dept is scrutinizing every case... because some employees have allegedly been calling in sick just to use up their time before they may lose it. 
Is it possible to have diarrhea continuously for SIX weeks and not be in the hospital?  Aren't there medications that can control this?  Am I too trusting or should I suspect misuse of sick time benefit?  Thanks,

Veteran Member

Date Joined Mar 2005
Total Posts : 2486
   Posted 11/4/2005 2:18 PM (GMT -7)   
IBS can be a very serious problem for some people; kind of like having a constant stomach flu.  It can cause severe diarrhea, excrutiating stomach cramps, and nausea.  All of these symptoms have a profound impact on a person's life, obviously.  Also, keep in mind that many people with so-called IBS actually end up having more serious conditions, such as inflammatory bowel disease, and were simply misdiagnosed.
I myself have had chronic diarrhea for a year, up to 30 times a day, and this has wreaked major havoc on pretty much all aspects of my life.  Luckily, I have wonderful employers, and FMLA has saved my life.
I encourage you to provide as much support as possible for your employee.  She may be undergoing more medical testing to elucidate the cause of her symptoms and it's likely a very stressful time for her.  I think it's great you are educating yourself about this very mysterious but often horrible condition.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 3269
   Posted 11/4/2005 2:28 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi C,
Welcome to HealingWell!
I know you got the answer you were looking for, but I just wanted to welcome you.
IBS can be debilitating and is hard for many of us to deal with. It is extremely helpful and soothing to the mind (and gut) to know your employer is behind you and trying to understand your problems. .
Co-Moderator for the IBS Forum
Please donate to help HealingWell continue to help us.....

Regular Member

Date Joined Aug 2005
Total Posts : 139
   Posted 11/4/2005 2:36 PM (GMT -7)   
Hello! I had this same problem back in July and missed 2 months of work and I actually just had to quit.....I coudn't go on. Every single time I would think it was under control, I would leave my house and get so sick on the way I had to turn right around and go back home. My D is so bad, I cannot work at all anymore, I guess, until the doc's can get it under control. I am on all kinds of meds and none of them are working so far. We're still doing trial and error....just keep testing new meds. There has to be one that will work, one day. I'm sorry your employee has been out for 6 weeks....I know it's frustrating and it's very frustrating for us who are suffering, as well.

Good Luck!

Regular Member

Date Joined Aug 2005
Total Posts : 139
   Posted 11/4/2005 2:39 PM (GMT -7)   
Put it this way, I haven't left my house in 10 days, so far. I have a colonoscopy/endoscopy on Tuesday and I don't even know if I will make it to the's a horrible, horrible illness.....

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