Constant epigastric discomfort/bloating for over a year with no relief.

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At the time of my symptom onset, I was a very healthy and active 24 year old. I have since lost weight, energy, muscle mass, libido, exercise endurance, etc.

I had previously been diagnosed with what a doctor assumed was gastritis-- he prescribed 30 days worth of omeprazole, and within that time frame, I felt better. This occurred 1-2x more, and I was able to manage/treat on my own. These occurred at ages 22-23.

I then moved cities at age 24. On my first night, after taking an NSAID dose due to headache following a beer/dinner in the sun, the same symptoms associated with the speculated gastritis diagnosis emerged. I knew how to treat it. No problem. At the time, I starting my career. With moving and work, it was the most stressful point of my life. Before the familiar symptoms went away (gnawing abdominal pain/discomfort), a secondary abdominal discomfort emerged, right below/between my ribs. The initial symptoms went away, and the secondary symptom remained. It has remained for over a year.

At the time it started, I was taking a high dose of esomeprazole (nexium), and previously omeprazole (prilosec). I was also taking sucralfate. I am still unsure whether or not the dosage or combination of these medications caused my problem. Though prescribed to me, I always worry they are the cause. Nothing I've done can relieve my singular symptom.

I have seen two gastroenterologists and one hematologist. I have had normal blood draws, stool samples, EGD (x2) with biopsy, gastric-emptying study. An ultrasound and a CT revealed I have a slightly enlarged spleen, but everything else normal; the hematologist was not worried about infections as I have no other symptoms, save occasional nausea.

I have been prescribed amitriptyline, but was told to discontinue if no improvement after 10 days. There was none.

I tried two weeks of only organic, no sugar, etc. I have eliminated coffee. I average 0-2 alcoholic beverages a week. After discontinuing the strict 2-week diet, I have realized that the types of food I eat have no bearing. I can eat a plate of veggies, a box of cookies, a big burger, or drink a glass of water or perhaps a six pack of beer, and my symptom(s) remain. Sometimes, when I eat larger meals, the discomfort worsens for several days before returning to baseline. I have even tried going 1-2 days without eating, and the discomfort remains.

I have not received a diagnosis of any type at this time. My doctors are scratching their heads, probably trying to figure out what to try next. I most recently saw the hematologist, and she drafted the possibility of functional abdominal pain. I fear this diagnosis is coming. I've read many stories on here regarding the diagnosis, and there are definitely similarities.

Has anyone experienced this main symptom (constant upper abdominal bloating/pain/discomfort)? Has anyone had similar experiences with PPI usage and/or sucralfate?

Best of luck, all.

0 likes, 5 replies

5 Replies

  • Posted

    I've also had the breath test for H. pylori done ... pretty sure I've had it done twice at this point haha.

  • Posted

    Hate to reply again! But I didn't even describe the feeling, which is so strange to me. It feels as if all stomach sensation has traveled north: hunger, fullness, etc. occur higher up in the abdomen, right below/in the middle of the rib cage. I do not feel these sensations lower in the abdomen, where they had always been previously. Anyone have a similar experience?

  • Edited

    Hi Hi I've had some of your same symptoms for the past 4 years. It started after my doctor removed my gallbladder. kind of a bloating feeling right under my right rib at the very top. It comes and goes but it's more of a pressure. and sometimes the pain is in my back underneath my right shoulder blade. My GI performed every procedure and blood test known to man and everything came back normal. He then referred me to a specialist at MUSC here in Charleston to be evaluated for sphincter of Odie dysfunction SOD for short. I waited three months to get that appointment. The doctor talked to my husband and myself for 10 minutes pushed on my belly once or twice and said no you're not a candidate for ERCP You don't have SOD. I was then referred to the Mayo clinic. still no diagnosis. and they performed the same test that my gastroenterologist had performed everything came back normal. So here I am 4 years later still no diagnosis and having this issue. doesn't matter what I eat, if I don't eat, if I drink water all day, sometimes the problems there sometimes it's not. He is back to thinking that it's s o d and now has referred me to Duke University to see if they can diagnose it. The problem is it's very hard to diagnose and the first thing they start with is testing liver and pancreatic enzymes. If those come back normal they say no nothing's wrong with your liver or your pancreas. however you can still have SOD and have slightly elevated liver and pancreatic enzymes. and mine are always slightly elevated but apparently not enough to cause any concern. I've been on an SOD support group site and the majority of the people there that have been diagnosed with it all had normal tests just as I have. I don't know if this problem fits you but I hope you find help. look up SOD.

  • Posted

    You will have to continue PPIs for a longer period of time. What you are having is dyspepsia and GERD. You may also be having a hiatal hernia ( if your Gastro ever conducted an endoscopy).

    Diet and healthy lifestyle can bring some relief.

    Include red apples in your diet.

    G.a.v.i.s.c.o.n syrup is also helpful.

    Elevate your bed on the head side.

    Sleep on your left side.

    Consult a different gastro if you are not satisfied.

    Good luck.

  • Edited

    brother I've had non stop abdominal issues for 4 months now, i will try list my symptoms

    Constant Bloating (abdomen)

    Excessive Flatulence (mainly after eating)

    Small amounts of blood upon wiping after a bowel movement (although i think this is due to something outside my anus that i keep swiping)

    Multiple swollen lymph nodes around lower abdomen (recently popped up) (pea sized)

    Two large swollen inguinal lymph nodes (Have been there since 2017)

    The urge to have a bowel movement 5 minutes after eating like carby foods, although eating salads and vegetables, fruit does not cause this symptom

    What i believe to be mucus running out of my anus on to my boxer shorts

    Gaviscon or buscopan seem to take my symptoms dramatically down, i reckon I've got IBS or gastritis or something, but you're not alone pal i have the same issues

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