Severe gastro symptoms ruining my life

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Severe gastro symptoms ruining my life

Postby GilmoreGirl » 08 Jan 2017, 19:13

Hi all,

I've posted on here since September since getting a chronic anal fissure that is on the mend...but I've taken a turn for the worse with gastrointestinal symptoms.

I'm desperate for some help. Please excuse the lengthy post - I so greatly appreciate your taking the time to read.

I was diagnosed with ibs about 5 years ago, biggest issue was cramping after eating which was relieved with a bowel movement. FODMAP diet and mezavant allowed me to get my ibs under control - things were pretty good.

Then I was diagnosed with a chronic anal fissure in September - I have never been in such hellish pain. I had a colonoscopy (all clear!) in late November and began to improve shortly after, avoiding surgery. I still have burning after a bm especially when standing and the sphincter muscle is tight, but the fissures are completely healed, I haven't had any bleeding or sharp bm pain for over a month.

Soon after my colonoscopy, I began developing lots of gas and some diarrhea - I would belch every second for an hour or two during the day. The gas would then subside. I was taking miralax and Metamucil - I thought the symptoms were due to that, so I stopped both.

Since the beginning of December this has only become worse - I belch or pass gass all day, almost every second, explosively. I have severe stomach cramps and pain that have sent me to the ER twice. I have very bad diarrhea everyday. This is making it even more difficult for the sphincter to relax, I'm petrified I will get another fissure. I also often see strings of white or brown "mucous" when I have a bowel movement. When I look to see if this is an identifiable worm or something, it looks like what some have called "ropeworm" which as far as I can tell is not actually ever been shown to be anything besides mucous - still, very strange for me.

Ova and parasite and other stool tests have all been negative - but I suspect a parasite or giardia. On my suspicions, my doctor prescribed me flagyl for a 10 day course (I'm on the 5tg day and no improvement). I cannot get in to see a gastroenterologist despite the fact that I am already a patient. The emergency room sends me home with buscopan and tells me to see a gastro.

My diet consists of gluten free bread, bananas, a little peanut butter, maybe some oats. I've been diagnosed with ibs in the past and these have always been safe foods for me. I've never had these symptoms to this degree with ibs, especially the diarrhea.

Anybody have a similar experience? I need some help - I've lost my job, had to quit school in the middle of master's degree, have gone from extremely fit (working out 6 days a week, weightlifting and running - I was a personal trainer) to sitting on the couch or in bed all day because I'm in so much pain. This has also caused a break up between my boyfriend of three years and I.

And to emphasize - I had gas before from ibs that bothered me, but this is an INCREDIBLE amount of gas, it's inhuman! I have no idea what to do anymore, and I've been suicidal for weeks

Thank you so much for reading, any advice is so so welcome
GilmoreGirl
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Re: Severe gastro symptoms ruining my life

Postby chachacha » 08 Jan 2017, 22:59

I'm so sorry to hear how much you've been suffering.

Have you been tested for bile acid diarrhea by any chance? I had chronic diarrhea before my LIS, and the CRS said that we should do the surgery and then treat the diarrhea afterward. It turned out that my diarrhea stopped immediately after the LIS, but that was due to a fluke of me discovering that switching from coffee to tea after the surgery stopped my runs in their tracks. I had been to doctor after doctor, trying to cure the diarrhea for a few years and tried everything (probiotics, eliminating dairy, low carbs, high fibre, etc.), but nothing had worked. My CRS said that we should test for bile acid diarrhea after the LIS, but as I said, I didn't end up needing to be tested. If you haven't been tested yet, perhaps it would be worth a shot? The treatment is a drug called Questran (CHOLESTYRAMINE), which used to be a cholesterol-lowering drug until the statins became the drug of choice for that condition.

Maybe you could get your GP to prescibe that for you, to see if it helps?

Good luck!

Just coming back to add that many people with bile acid diarrhea are incorrectly diagnosed with IBS. And this article also points to severe and very painful abdominal cramping.

http://www.uhcw.nhs.uk/bam/what-is-bam
Fissure since about 2007
Fissure diagnosed in 2011
Diltiazem for two years - didn't work well
LIS January, 2015
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Re: Severe gastro symptoms ruining my life

Postby GilmoreGirl » 09 Jan 2017, 07:40

Thanks chachacha - will ask about that specifically. Did you have lots of gas from that? What worries me is the upper gastro gas...never in my life had that unless maybe I drank a soda
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Re: Severe gastro symptoms ruining my life

Postby chachacha » 09 Jan 2017, 10:30

No, I never had bile acid diarrhea, it was just what my CRS thought might be causing my years of constant diarrhea (after other doctors had tried everything else under the sun). After my LIS though, and before he was going to prescribe the Questran, my diarrhea completely disappeared the day of my surgery, and I attribute that to the sole fact that I switched from drinking coffee to drinking tea. It was just a fluke that happened because I used to sit down every morning at my computer with a coffee and after the surgery, when I couldn't sit, I didn't feel like coffee (lying on my side on the couch), so my husband suggested a cup of tea. I have no other explanation as to why my diarrhea stopped at the exact same time that I had the LIS, because it was the only dietary change that I made. The point is that mine wasn't bile acid diarrhea, but perhaps yours is? With something as fairly benign as Questran, perhaps your GP would be willing to give it a try. And maybe the gas might be an anxious reaction to all of the trauma that you've experienced lately. Our bodies are so incredibly sensitive when under stress and react in all sorts of ways. Hopefully all of it can be dealt with when you see the GI, but again, maybe your GP could try you on Questran in the meantime, while you wait for the GI appointment.
Fissure since about 2007
Fissure diagnosed in 2011
Diltiazem for two years - didn't work well
LIS January, 2015
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Re: Severe gastro symptoms ruining my life

Postby GilmoreGirl » 09 Jan 2017, 10:43

Ah ok! Sorry I misunderstood. I will ask about that for sure...but the gas is definitely not anxiety related. I was actually feeling great gastro wise before my colonoscopy and for about 5-7 days after...and then the gas started, then the diarrhea, etc.

I'm scared the doctors are going to brush this off as ibs...I've had ibs since my teens and I've never felt this way. I only ever felt like this when I had a stomach flu once about 8 years ago, but it only lasted 24 hours
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Re: Severe gastro symptoms ruining my life

Postby chachacha » 09 Jan 2017, 10:45

If these are new symptoms, then you really should get in to see the gastroenterologist. New symptoms should always be a reason to be seen, especially since these are so debilitating.
Fissure since about 2007
Fissure diagnosed in 2011
Diltiazem for two years - didn't work well
LIS January, 2015
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Re: Severe gastro symptoms ruining my life

Postby GilmoreGirl » 09 Jan 2017, 11:03

Thanks chachacha,

Definitely, it's really starting to scare me.

I've tried so much to get an appointment with the gastro, my gp has written a letter asking that I be seen, the emergency room doctor referred me as urgent, I've phoned two gastro offices and the best I could get is to be on a waiting list. I literally cried on the phone asking to be seen.

Finally this morning I phoned my SURGEONS office because her receptionist has always been so helpful and I've always been able to see her asap - next day even.

I explained everything to her receptionist and he said he would make some calls right away. He called me back in 10 minutes saying that the gastro's office would call me back today to fit me in this week.

Unbelievable...it shouldn't be this difficult, it's inhumaine
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Re: Severe gastro symptoms ruining my life

Postby chachacha » 09 Jan 2017, 11:19

No, it shouldn't, but I'm so happy to hear that you'll be getting in soon.
Fissure since about 2007
Fissure diagnosed in 2011
Diltiazem for two years - didn't work well
LIS January, 2015
chachacha
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Re: Severe gastro symptoms ruining my life

Postby GilmoreGirl » 09 Jan 2017, 17:07

Thanks chachacha again for your help.

I have an appointment tomorrow afternoon, thank god.

I just had a thought...I've been taking half a pill of lorazepam in the evenings about every second day to help me calm down and sleep...otherwise I'd have had more than one panic attack by now. But I'm wondering if it could be causing me problems?!
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Re: Severe gastro symptoms ruining my life

Postby chachacha » 09 Jan 2017, 17:22

That's great news!

You should ask the doctor tomorrow, to see if he/she knows.
Fissure since about 2007
Fissure diagnosed in 2011
Diltiazem for two years - didn't work well
LIS January, 2015
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