Gastro issues for 10 months, in need of some advice.

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In April of 2014 I had the worst stomach virus of my life. I couldn't do anything to treat it as my doctor said to let it run it's course. I recovered in about a week and then went to Mexico twice this summer on family holidays. I never got sick while in Mexico, however after returning symptoms started. On November 1 I thought I was having a heart attack. I had trouble breathing and could feel my heart beating in my chest. I went to an urgent care facility where they hooked me up to ekg machines and X-rays and found nothing. However the following day my pain came back and I got light headed and dizzy and couldn't catch my breath. I went to the emergency room where I again was hooked up to multiple machines and again they found nothing and told me it was either acid reflux or an anxiety attack. Kind of odd I thought but moved on. Ever since then for the past 2 months I have been having on and off diahhrea mixed with constipation. I have been having intense stomach cramps, constant burping of air, bloated abdomen at times, and I have vomited bile once. I went to another doctor to get some tests done to which they all came back fine (h pylori, thyroid problem, etc) the only thing I have learned so far is that I have low b12. I went to a gastro doctor this past week after suffering all through the winter holidays and they are going to run some stool tests to see if they find anything. In the mean time they told me that it is ibs. Although I am not against it being that, usually ibs doesn't dibiliate you for 2 days straight. It's like I keep getting a reoccuring stomach virus. My doctor told me to try a probiotic to which I did two days ago. I was woken up at 5am to intense stomach pains, vomiting, and diahhrea. I called my doctor and they said it was a reaction to bad bacteria and to take it again. Quite honestly I can't put myself through that again as I have work soon. I looked up my reaction online and found that SIBO can cause an adverse reaction to probiotics. I'm frustrated because nothing has been found out yet and I can't continue to live in pain and fear. I am 23 years old and healthy from what I am aware of. I am trying a FODMAP and gluten free diet currently.  If anyone has advice please let me know. Thank you for reading this.  

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  • Posted

    Hi Christina1008,

    Low B12 and acid reflux are both symptoms of gastritis which I suffer from. The anxiety and heart beating fast is also typical and I can't touch probiotics  But I think you're going in the right direction by adjusting your diet. I find the problem with FODMAP is the fruit which is too acidic for me. The diet which has helped me is the specific carbohydrate diet (which also allows fruit but I avoid it) basically you stick to simple carbs to give your digestive system a break. By doing this and avoiding sugar, alcohol and all things acidic my symptoms are finally under control. No more diarrhea or pain, I can even cheat occasionally but I find that the condition is hard to shift completely. I imimagie that your doctor is going to send a camera down which will confirm if you have gastritis. I also found that a food diary helps, it's good for spotting the trigger foods. Good luck.  

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  • Posted

    Hi there. I fully sympathise. I started with low B12 and I mean LOW! and at the same time very low iron. I had the bloated tummy, the burping, the pain when I ate etc etc etc.......turns out that I have Gastritus which is an inlamed stomach lining. For a month I was on inhibitors(tablet form) that eased the pain substantiably. I did however have to stop eating drinking the following:- Spicy food, oily food, coffee, alcohol and chocolate. These are ALL irritants when you have tummy trouble. I was examined with endoscopathy (both ends) and my consultant said he was satisfied that it was the stomach lining that was causing the issue, possibly related to the low B12. I have Pernicious Anemia (Very low B12 and need medication every three months for the rest of my life). So my advise Christina is get a second opinion and get some tests done......DON'T leave it for it to go away because it won't! Get it sorted out as quicjkly as you can and get your doc to check the links with B12 and low iron. The endoscapathy procedure is horrible so be warned but at least they found out what was wrong.Good luck and don't take any nonscence from your Doc...get the second or even third opinion.
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  • Posted

    Hi Christina

    Sorry to hear about yr illness! Unfortunatley stomach's can take a while to diagnose, there's lot's to rule out, as i've suffered constant upper abdominal pain for going on 2 or more yr's.Any way back to you.Is yr pain there all the time? Or do you get relief from going to the bathroom, does it get worse when you eat or drink? Lot's of us get told it's IBS which is very common, however IBD is completely different, however IBS comes and goes, IBD is a daily battle for most of us.However as i said diagnosis is difficult.Hope you feel better real soon.

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  • Posted

    Thank you all for your replies. At this point I'm going to definitely continue to stick to the low FODMAP diet and gluten free as it has seemed to help some regarding loose bowels. I still have a constant nagging pain right below my breastbone, I guess upper part of my stomach. To answer some of your questions regarding when the pain is and what makes it better: the pain is pretty much constant. My stomach makes all sorts of weird noises after eating, it doesn't matter if it's morning, noon or night. By weird noises I mean digestion noises but to an extreme extent, my husband can hear them from the other side of the couch! It's definitely frustrating not knowing exactly what is going on, however hopefully my doctor will find something soon, I have my follow up appointment at the end of this month. Meantime I am going to continue the diets. 
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  • Posted

    Hi Christina, well continuing with the diet sounds great if it is working for you I would suggest however, crazy as they may seem, to chew whatever you are eating as much as you can before swallowing. I eat carbs and fine that the more I chew my food first the easier it is on my stomach! I get very few "noises" now, and a far more settled system. Personally, if it is causing you so much concern and pain, DON'T wait till the end of the month. I am due for follow-up in a few weeks both with my Doc and Consultant....if I was in the pain you are I would be calling them to move these appts. Forward. The PPI tablets I had for a month seem to have sorted a lot os the problems out with acid etc because we caught it early enough.
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