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Hello I am English and I have been living in France with my wife and daughter in the last 3 years. I am having problems with finding an answer to my medical issue and am seeking some advice on what direction I should go or if anyone has any ideas of what I could be.
So on the 27th of June 2018 I started having sharp stabbing pains shooting through the right side of my lower chest and upper abdomen down to my right foot slightly immobilizing me for a brief second, this would happen once a day. I saw a doctor after having the pain for two weeks. She said it is possible I have inflammation of the rib cage which I told her it felt like more of a problem inside my body than on the bone but I took her word for it. I returned to the doctor on the 16th of July with the same problem but more frequent pain, around 8 times a day now. I had also been having problems with diarrhoea and constipation. She wrote me a proscription to have an ultrasound test. The results came back as normal. I returned to the doctor with the results and she said there isn’t anything wrong so she doesn’t know what it can be, nothing to worry about. So I left with the same problem and no answer. I returned to work after the visit to the doctor and during the day I had the pain recurring again. A few days later I felt the pain again and felt around under my ribs as a usual response and this time I had felt a ball just under my right rib, it was like a golf ball and I could only feel it when I was standing up. It rolled as I put pressure on it, I really had to feel around in the right place to find it, so when my doctor felt around in that spot before, I was lying down so it’s possible she missed it. My doctor was on holiday when I discovered this but she said I can see her colleague and he wrote a proscription for a MRI scan that I had done on the 27th of July, it also came back normal. Me and my family were planning to leave on holiday on the 30th and the doctor at the MRI scan said I am more than able to go on holiday but he reckons I should see a gastroenterologist after. So we started are holiday, we drove to my wife’s aunties house in Strasbourg France and stayed for a few days before I had had enough of my pain and saw her family doctor in Strasbourg who prescribed me tramadol so It would relive me of the pain whilst I was on holiday. I had also booked to see a gastroenterologist in Strasbourg who said he would give me a colonoscopy and an endoscopy to ease my mind, but he believed there’s really nothing there if the scan said there’s nothing. I had the exams done and again the results came back normal. Of course I was feeling very re assured in one hand because all the results where normal but on the other hand I was not re assured with the lack of answers for my problem which I am still having to live with. But with this I just kept taking the Tramadol to mask the pain, by now there was less of the sharp intense pain and more of a constant dull pain. This was giving me tremendous stress and worry over the holiday. But the doctor that prescribed me tramadol said I can take up to 8 a day and found myself taking 6 a day as the effects were wearing off. I drank a lot of alcohol to get my mind off it as well. We had our last stop in Salzburg Austria on the 19th of August when I started having a low grade fever and a dull constant pain in my stomach (where the stomach organ is not the belly) just under my lower left rib along with a tightening throat feeling. We returned home after completing our holiday. But the night we got back I panicked so much thinking I had taking too much Tramadol and had damaged my stomach, I was thinking extremely irrationally and couldn’t get it out of my mind. My wife tried to calm me down but all of this stress previously and now this had tipped me over the edge and I believed I was dying. I rushed myself to the emergency centre that evening with all my test results. And after they examined the results thoroughly, they agreed there can’t be anything wrong and they suggested I should see there psychologist. I agreed and she came to the conclusion that I had become very depressed and it’s all due to that even though I tried to explain that it was the pain that caused the panic and anxiety not the anxiety causing the pain (I do have a history of anxiety and panic attacks though) I said I had never felt anything like this with anxiety and depression before. But she prescribed me antidepressants (Venlafaxine 75mg 3 a day). The next day I returned to my original doctor with the previous results and explained what had recently happened and that the original sharp pain under the right rib had pretty much gone but the lump was still there. She had confusion in her eyes and agreed that I should stay on the antidepressants for now and explained that the lump was probably a strained muscle after looking in one of her books and showing me a picture, which I believed this was just to give me an answer for the lump to calm me down. She arranged a simple blood test to test if there was an infection with the low grade fever but then said we must stop with all of these tests after. I had the test done on the way home. Which later came back normal too. I returned home and completely panicked again, even broke down crying, I felt like I am alone with my problem, no answer and everyone thinks I’m mad because all the tests say I have nothing. The new antidepressants had to be taken gradually starting with one and adding one more every three days until I was just taking three in the morning every day, so they don’t take immediate effect. With this panic I telephoned my doctor and told her I can’t cope so she prescribed me Oxazepam 10mg to take up to 3 a day, they pretty much calm you down immediately. My work holiday had finished and I returned to work on the 27th of August, by this time the low grade fever had gone but the gnawing pain in my stomach was still there every day from start to finish along with a tight throat, I had also started to excessively burp but finding it difficult to release the burps, after I had eaten or drank I would sometimes burp and regurgitate the food or drink at the same time. I had arranged to see a gastroenterologist near home to seek answers. After telling him my story his eyes lowered and he looked like he thought I was mad. He started talking a lot calmer and saying I need to stop being so anxious, that being the reason to my problems. So I left with the same verdict. The week went on, we had a dinner party one evening and I drank some wine. When I went to bed that night I had a largely bloated and painful stomach. I had to force myself to burp to release trapped air which was difficult, I was sometimes regurgitating the wine. I eventually cleared the air and got to sleep. I phoned the gastroenterologist the next day and told him a wanted an endoscopy but he said no because I had only just had one not even a month ago. That weekend I had worsening problems of regurgitating fluid and pain in the stomach, one time I regurgitated a small amount of black gravely substance which felt bizarre in my throat, I also had a pain developing at the bottom of my oesophagus and I have a lot of gas with very smelly stool and flatulence. The Monday after I returned to the gastroenterologist and I demanded an endoscopy, he eventually agreed and he also gave me a brief ultrasound in his room too. Which he said he can’t see anything. I had the endoscopy a week later on and when I woke up from the anaesthetic I spoke to the doctor and he told me he had found nothing but this time he had done a biopsy which I would get the results back in two more weeks. The results came back normal. I returned to my doctor with these results and she was angry he had gave me another test and said it makes no sense to do one in such a short time. She insisted I continue taking the medication and see her again in a months’ time to see how I am doing. I have recently been seeing a psychiatrist recommended by my doctor, all I want to talk to him about is my medical condition because that’s the only serious problem I have in my life, but of course he said he can’t help me with that issue see we talk about other problems. But all I want is my medical problem to go away. Recently the liver pain has come back and can be very intense.
These are all my symptoms now:
• Inability to release burps normally like something is blocking my oesophagus resulting in gas build up, pain in oesophagus, wet gurgling burps when released hard to swallow air too.
• Slight inability to swallow, worse with bread and dry foods.
• Tight throat
• Regurgitating food and drink, worse with dairy and water.
• Pain in stomach (the organ not the belly) worsening from time to time, gets very sharp and intense sometimes
• Sharp pain near liver from time to time
• Chest pain, harsher on left side of upper chest and centre
• Harder to take deep breaths
• Bad cough with mucus, worse at night
• Excessive gas build up resulting to frequent flatulence and burping (very smelly and embarrassing flatulence)
• Feeling sick every day
• Feeling weak
• No energy
• Hard to exercise
• Constantly tired
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