In 1991 I went to the doctor because my stools were narrow and sometimes ribbon shaped. Because it has been so long ago I cannot remember if I had any of the other symptoms of IBS. I was sent to have a colonoscopy to rule out any form of colorectal cancer. Every thing came back negative so the doctor diagnosed me with IBS. In the 15 years since then I cannot say that I have had any of the other symptoms of IBS except the way stools pass changes: an urgent need to have a bowel movement (which I only have when I panic or have an anxiety attack), or feel that you haven't completely passed a stool.
Now, 15 years later I am having LOTS of the symptoms. The symptoms I am having now are:
mild, intermittent lower right quadrant and upper right quadrant pain (I thought the main symptom of IBS was more severe abdominal pain than that), the passage of mucous in my stool and really, really weird changes in my bowel habits.
I am glad we can openly discuss bowel habits here because it is really quite embarrassing. But here is how it has gone for the past few days. First I cannot ever remember being constipated in my life but I was constipated for two days. My doctor put me on Adderall XR which can cause constipation so I thought that was the cause.
But then the next day my bowel pattern was back to normal so I didn't really think the constipation was caused by the medication. The next day I passes a lot of water mucous in the morning and did nothing else for the rest of the day.
The next two days I was constipated again and passed small, hard stools with mucous on them. The next day started with constipation but in the evening I had a normal bm.
The next day I had no bm at all. I have never had this happen in my 48 years that I can remember. So to relieve the constipation I drank a lot of liquids and ate a can of spinach.
It worked and today I started out constipated but ended up having lots and lots of bowel movements that got smaller and then ribbon shaped as the day went on.
I am confused for three reasons:
First, I know that one of the symptoms of IBS is a change in bowel habits but these changes seem way out of that league. Have any of you ever had as weird a change in bowel habits as the ones I have described above?
Second, my diagnosis of IBS has been dormant for 15 years and I thought stress would cause IBS to flair up. However over those 15 years I have had much more severe stress/ anxiety and many other mental health problems than I do now.
Has your IBS ever been dormant for many years even though you were under a lot of stress?
Third, and last, but not least I thought in order to have IBS you had to either have trouble with constipation, diarrhea or a combination of the both. I have none of those.
Confused in Utah,