PLEASE HELP. Hoping for input on potential gastrointestinal diagnoses.

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New Member

Date Joined Jul 2015
Total Posts : 14
   Posted 7/12/2015 3:39 AM (GMT -7)   
Hello everyone,

I wasn't sure where to post this, but I thought I would start here. I am a 24 y/o female that was diagnosed with eosinophilic esophagitis and GERD in 2009. I had been having severe difficulty swallowing and upper abdominal pain in the months preceding my diagnosis. I had an esophageal stricture, so my GI doctor dilated it during the endoscopy. Also, I had a small hiatal hernia. For my GERD, I was put on Nexium. I took Nexium for a couple years and it helped a lot.

Fast forward to one year ago, during the summer of 2014. I was having extremely bad abdominal pain, so ended up having a contrast abdominal/pelvic CT scan. The only abnormalities the CT showed was a simple kidney cyst (totally benign), moderate scoliosis, and abundant stool throughout my colon. I followed up with my GI doctor and he said that I have IBS-C (constipation) and splenic flexure syndrome. Those can both cause upper left abdominal pain I was experiencing.

A month or two after my severe abdominal pain, I developed a severe headache one day. This was at the end of July. I ended up having a headache EVERYDAY until September, when I finally saw a neurologist. I had a head MRI in October, which showed minor non-specific findings (minimal white matter signal changes). My neurologist concluded I had migraines, so she told me to take magnesium and melatonin everyday for 3 months. I did that and it actually helped a lot. I don't have daily headaches anymore; in fact, they're usually once a week or every couple weeks.

Unfortunately, the symptoms did not stop after the headaches. In December 2014, I started waking up out of sleep with a racing heartbeat. I would feel lightheaded and my heart would just race. I ended up wearing a one month event monitor, in order to check for arrhythmias. It was normal, except I had one brief episode of SVT (supraventricular tachycadria) and numerous PACs (premature atrial contractions). Then, I had an echocardiogram to make sure my heart structure was normal; it turned out to be so. Therefore, there is nothing structurally wrong with my heart. The episodes of waking up out of sleep with a racing heart have decreased over the past couple months.

Over the past 4 months, I have been fatigued and tired almost all of the time. I do get palpitations still, but not as bad as in December. However, my abdominal pain started happening again a few months ago. It's the same upper abdominal pain I have had before. In addition, my back has hurt for the past few months. Over the past 3 weeks, I have been SEVERELY constipated. I have not had a complete BM in almost 3 weeks, but have gone a little bit. It's mostly been small, hard, and very difficult to pass. I ended up having an abdominal ultrasound done last week and it was normal. Clearly, the constipation has been causing my severe abdominal pain. I took MiraLax and Colace for 3 days, but neither of them worked at all. In fact, my stomach seemed to hurt more so I stopped taking them. I've been drinking prune juice, eating more fruit and veggies, oatmeal (for more fiber), and drinking more water. Nothing has helped. Tonight, I took 300ml of magnesium citrate and it was not fun. It made me nauseous and gave me stomach pain. about an hour after taking it, I had diarrhea; but, I still have not had a complete, solid, formed BM. I'm very bloated and have low back pain now. Also, my stomach seems to be rumbling VERY loud and a lot more than usual. I'll be calling my doctor tomorrow morning, but has anyone else dealt with these symptoms?

I'm seeing my GI doctor in August and I'm guessing the next step is a colonoscopy. I've done research and am wondering about Crohn's disease and Celiac disease. My uncle and grandfather both had colon cancer, but it would be highly unlikely in my age to have that (although not impossible). For more information, all of my blood work is normal except: mildly low potassium level (3.2), low vitamin D level (18), and my ferritin is on the very low side (14).

I appreciate any input and advice from you all. Thank you in advance!

Regular Member

Date Joined Aug 2015
Total Posts : 151
   Posted 8/1/2015 12:24 PM (GMT -7)   
Any medical doctor can order a celiac blood panel. You must be eating gluten or the tests will be invalid:

-tTG IgA and tTG IgG
-DGP IgA and DGP IgG
-total serum IgA and IgG (control test)
-AGA IGA and AGA IgG - older and less reliable tests largely replace by the DGP tests

-endoscopic biopsy - make sure at least 6 samples are taken

New Member

Date Joined Sep 2015
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 9/9/2015 12:46 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi savvylee17

I'm new here, but have had around 45 years of trying to be diagnosed. It isn't an easy path, and there will be many side-roads that seem promising, but can lead to a dead end. Being someone who has asked similar questions all my life, I just want to encourage you to keep going and not give up. The reality is that often a person can have more than one illness/disease, and that makes diagnosis difficult and confusing. Often a test or biopsy and be false/negative (even false/positive) for a variety of reasons. Often people's symptoms resolve themselves over time. All these things are part of the specialist's tools of diagnosis, and while sometimes a diagnosis is quick and easy, often times it isn't. Be strong, and face the future with confidence. Forums can be a source of great support and encouragement, but be wary of those who attempt to diagnose you. If a highly trained specialist struggles with diagnosing you, how much less from someone with no medical training :0)

New Member

Date Joined Sep 2015
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 9/25/2015 5:00 AM (GMT -7)   
My husband has been celiac for over 15 years. Although he tries to follow a GF diet, ocaissionally he has flare ups that put s him out of commission for about a week.
This summer he was in the hospital twice with severe vommitting, stomach pain, dehydration and constipation.
It turned out that he was so constipated that the blockage built up his feces into his stomach area. Having no where else o go, he started vomitting his own feces
He was on IV foraround 10 days for hydration and to clear out his system.
Around a week after he was home, he started the vomitting again. This time he was kept in to undergo many tests which tured up nothing.
However after a colonoscopy where a biopsy was taken, it was discovered that he has Collegenic colitis, sometimes called microscopic colitis as it only shows up uner a microscope. The majour cause for this type of colitis is Celiac.
I have been doing a lot of research concerning his new addotional diet and found out that there are trigger foods that being on flares......all dairy, yogurt, gluten, nuts . Fruit and meat are very hard to digest and should be eaten sparingly.
Found a book called Pain Free Foods For Colitis. It suggested that there are three food categories...starch, protein and water based veggies. The say that protein should NEVER be eaten with starch.
I have been trying this and so far so good. Invaluable info written by someone who has gone through it for years.
Hope that you are feeling better soon.
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