Pain ongoing for almost 4 months now, need some answers

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Hi,

I've been suffering with this ongoing pain/constant ache in my right lower abdomen for almost 4 months now. The pain goes through into my Lower back area where my kidney is and seems worse at night most times.

I have a history of endometriosis and have had 2 laparoscopic surgeries for that. I saw my gynaecologist for this pain when it first presented thinking it was just another bout of endometriosis or a cyst. He did an ultrasound and couldn't find anything. The next step was another diagnostic laparoscopy and he also took my appendix out with a general surgeon just to be cautious in case that was the source of the pain. Had the operation on the 22/11 this year and went home 2 days after feeling good! I must mention I also had my mirena IUD changed over during this operation. The surgeon told me that everything looked normal in the op and that I had a few adhesions on the left side from my previous surgery and my appendix looked a little red but not significant.

The day after I was discharged I had excruciating pain on the right side, like a stabbing pain, and couldn't pass wind.

properly. Got up to the bathroom and almost passed out with the pain. I called an ambulance and they picked me up and took me to the hospital, even morphine wasn't helping the pain at this stage. My Temperature was elevated when I got there and I was admitted straight away. They did X-ray, CT scan and everything was normal!

Did urine test, blood tests and all came back fine except white blood cells where elevated. I was put on antibiotics through the drip for 3 days as they thought I had pelvic inflammatory disease. All vaginal swabs were negative though. I was sent home.

The week after I was back at work feeling great, then the pain came back stabbing across my abdomen and right side and shooting up into my kidney area. I couldn't sit down as it felt like it was going up into my rectum as well. So my boss took me to the emergency department again where they did another abdominal X-ray and I was severely blocked with poo. They gave me an enema and sent me on my way with an appointment to have a colonoscopy the following week (thinking it was bowel related). Next day ended up back in emergency again! The pain was just indescribable but no CT,MRI or X-ray showed anything! I know my body and something is just not right! I am a fit healthy 26 year old that loves life and just got married this year!

Anyway so this admission I was in hospital for almost 2 weeks waiting for a colonoscopy then there was a delay because they couldn't do it due to my recent appendectomy and the risk involved. I ended up having a sigmoidoscopy instead where they just look up to the sigmoid area and not the whole bowel. Doctors thought it could have been colitis due to my bowel irregularities and location of the pain. It just feels like my ovary though (gynaecologist checked that but it apparently looked fine).

Had sigmoidoscopy 3 days ago now and they found some inflammation in my rectum and took biopsies but they didn't think it was that significant. I got sent home and last night the pain started coming back again on my right side and painful at the end of my urine and bowel motions.

I am supposed to go back to work next week as I've been off for now almost 3 weeks in and out of hospital and with this pain. I'm worried that something has been overlooked or missed as I should not be feeling this way! I'm on strong pain relief to help it and I don't like taking all this stuff.

I don't know what to do!? Could it be kidney stones if my urine was clear? Would they show up on the CT of my abdomen? I haven't had sex with my husband because it is too painful on that right side. I just want some answers!

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17 Replies

  • Posted

    Hi Lucy,

    As I read I thought kidney stones....the monsters are rough and pointy and excruciating as they pass.

    Drink, drink, drink water, then drink more.

    If you catch your urine in one of those hats, you might hear if one drops in.

    Be careful with the narcotics, they will back things up. Consider taking docusate sodium daily to keep things moving.

    Congratulations on your wedding!

    hugs

    judith

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    • Posted

      Thank you so much Judith for the advice! That's very sweet of you and I will start to catch my urine (that's a good idea) I'm actually a Reg Nurse so you'd think I would know all this stuff but when it's yourself you become so unaware of everything it could be.

      I called my gynaecologist today and he said to go in on Monday and he will remove the mirena IUD to eliminate something else it could be.

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  • Posted

    I know this may sound improbable and Judith you would probably know but on another site I read where someone had shingles on the inside o of their body so it didn't show. I can only imagine how much that world hurt. Could that be a possibility?

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    • Posted

      Hi Amkoffee....yes, you are absolutely correct.

      A couple of Christmases ago, I was in agony for two weeks...requested an ultrasound that showed trouble at the liver, gall bladder, pancreas and the ducts. They then asked to do a cat scan that also show something going on. Neantime I was getting worse and popping narcotics like M & M s...was finally taken almost three hours away to a big city hospital where I was told that I had internal shingles!!!

      They were dreadful. I had to be monitored for pancreatitis...it was four months before I completely recovered.

      Hugs all around

      judith

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  • Posted

    I am a senior and I also had iud and pretty much hurt all the time w it. Bad periods, felt swollen etc. hated it. Much better after removed. I have to think iuds today are much improved but you get the general drift. Good luck and I am sending a hug your way. You are too young to feel so sick, makes me sad.
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  • Posted

    Hello Lucy,

    I had the same sort of pains in 2005 Iwas persistent with the doctor and after about two months the CT scan

    Scan blood clots were found on my small bowel which resulted in two feet of the small bowel being removed. My advice is

    Be a pain to the GP don't be fobbed off demand a CT scan.

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    • Posted

      I'm feeling a little better today. Still get the occasional spasms when I go to the bathroom and the shooting pain up my rectum. Have also had the dull ache in my right kidney area as well that just won't go away. I'm trying to keep on top of the pain with just panadol and ibuprofen. It's just upsetting that all my scans were clear and they couldn't find anything except apparently my white blood cell count is extremely low and I am leucopenic. I'm going to see my gynaecologist tomorrow and ask him to do another pelvic ultrasound to check and he will be removing my IUD. I really want to get better before next year as I've just been accepted to study postgraduate law (Juris Doctor) and want to be better before then.

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  • Posted

    Sounds like gas pains from appendectomy...which can be very painful...when your in surgery carbon dioxide gas is used to swell everything so the physician can visualize everything in the abdominal cavity..when everything is all done the patient can be very uncomfortable with this gas...also it takes time for normal bowel peristalis to return to normal....which you have already experienced with the fecal impaction....I have heard of patients complain of these symptoms for days to a few weeks after surgery....initially I thought maybe the physicians left some gauze or other foreign object in your body....this is not often but has happened...but sounds like they have ruled this out with post op imaging...
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    • Posted

      Yeah I have thought that as well and I have had previous pelvic surgery as well as inflammation so the gas could always exacerbate the situation. Yeah I am aware of the C02 gas inflation as I'm an RN and worked for a long time as a scrub nurse. Yeah it would be highly unlikely my surgeon would leave something inside me as I work at the hospital I was operated at and know all the staff there as well. Pretty much VIP haha. The pain on my right side was present prior to my appendectomy as well, that's why he did it in the first place to try and eliminate appendicitis. The feeling I have is like a heaviness in my right ovary radiating into my back (with the shooting pains sporadically up my rectum and cramping in lower abdo) that I've felt before with cysts but when they did the pelvic ultrasound there apparently was no cyst there, the shooting pains come on at the end of my urine as well.

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  • Posted

    Wow, excellent, very good! So very exciting. You go, girl!

    Okay, the rectum... proctalgia, makes sense???

    IUD...I remember when Tampax first came out....lots of toxic shock syndrome...I am hoping that is the cause...but the kidney has to be something else.

    And severe leukopenia....neutrophils? makes me think virus...Initially you wrote that they were elevated...now they have gone leukopenic? makes me think virus even more so.

    I have one of those brains that never stops....maybe I'll suddenly wake up with a flash of genius...hahaha

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    • Posted

      Thank you!

      Yep my WCC was low then elevated then low again and they were thinking inflammatory bowel disease such as colitis, due to my bowel habits as well.

      They took biopsies (they found inflammation in my rectum) from the sigmoidoscopy they did in the hospital and I will get them back this week so hopefully it will give some answers. Gastroenterologist has booked me in to have a full gastroscopy and colonoscopy in the New Year as my appendectomy suture would have healed properly then. I have always had problems with my bowel since I was a child, either diarrhoea or constipation and no happy medium and I have really bad reflux and that Knoring pain in my upper gut in the morning so they were even talking crohns disease (factoring in my weight loss of 6kgs in 6 months and I can't gain weight either). That's for your response:-)

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  • Posted

    Hi Lucy,

    I'm so sorry. Yes. It sounds like it could be kidney stones. Here are some tests they can do to detect them:

    A noncontrast spiral computed tomography (CT) scan is a special type of CT scan that moves in a circle.

    An ultrasound exam (ultrasonogram) uses reflected sound waves to produce a picture of your urinary tract.

    An intravenous pyelogram (IVP) is an X-ray test that shows pictures of the urinary tract  , including any kidney stones.

    A retrograde pyelogram uses a dye to find out whether a kidney stone or something else is blocking your urinary tract.

    Urinalysis and urine cultures test your urine.

    An abdominal X-ray (KUB) gives a picture of the kidneys, the bladder, and the tubes that connect the kidneys to the bladder (ureters).

    Here is what I found about kidney stones. And yes you could have them and your urine could still be clear. Its not until its doing damage because of not being diagnosed that they start to find blood. If it is kidney stones they need to find it before you get blood in your urine. 

    Here is what I read: Initially, a person who is suffering from kidney stones will not experience any severe symptoms of the disease. Kidney stone symptoms get severe as time passes and can turn fatal if neglected for a longer duration. These stones are hard masses of substances, which may include the foreign substances, as well as those from the body itself as dead tissues. 

    Until the size of these stones is small, they do not create any problems. However, if they grow in size and start blocking the passage of the substances through the kidneys. Therefore kidney stones give rise to some problems, which may be either simple or they can be very serious too. 

    However, in the initial stages the kidney stones do not show any symptoms. On the other hand, the symptoms may be very mild or only one of them may occur. If just one of the kidney stones symptoms appears, the people do not take it too seriously. Some other reasons are accounted for it. However, when some of the other symptoms too, start appearing then the people become aware of that something is wrong with them. 

    Due to the occurrence of the kidney stones, the patients feel pain in the abdomen. This is the most common kidney stones symptom. Generally, this pain begins from a mild one and it goes on increasing as the stone may grow in size. 

    The second symptom that the patient of kidney stone faces is the pain during urination or the menstruation. This happens if the stone blocks the flow of the urine form the kidney to the urinary tract. This pain can be very severe depending on the blockage that the stone proves to be for the urine. Similar thing happens during the menstruation. If it becomes very painful then there is a need of medication. 

    In addition to the pain during the urination, other problems with the urine also occur. One of them is the increase in the frequency of the urine and in addition to that, it becomes difficult to hold the urine. Most of the times, this occurs along with the pain during the urination. Because of this, the problems of the patients increase. 

    Some people also experience coming out of blood with the urine. This happens due to the harm that the stone may cause to the nearby tissues. Sometimes due to the same reasons, some other secretions are also observed in the urine. This changes the color of the urine. Therefore, the change in the color of the urine is also a kidney stones symptom.

    In addition to the problems with the urination, the other parts in the pelvic region i.e. the genital parts also experience pain. 

    The kidney stone also causes infections and inflammations in the surrounding region and therefore these may lead to the other problems too. In such cases, the patient feels dull and un energetic. He may develop nausea. This Nausea and vomiting without any, other reason is also a symptom of the kidney stones. 

    In addition to this, they patients sometimes experience fever and chills. During this fever the pain in the bones and other parts of the body also occur. The bones of the back and abdominal parts are affected. Especially the back pain is a serious occurrence during the kidney stones. This pain may be mild in the beginning but in most of the cases, it becomes very high in the later stages.

    Sorry you have been to the hospital so many times. If you get a high fever and are unable to stand, control your bowels and so forth go back to the hospital right away. 

    You are right. You are way too young for this! I was in my early twenties when I started having problems with my female organs. I almost died from a large cyst rupturing on my ovary. 

    I'm so sorry. Take care. 

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    • Posted

      Thanks so much for your response Debra! Very helpful.

      I have an update. I went for a urinary ultrasound today and they found something!! I have a 7mm nodule in my anterior bladder wall, the radiologist specified on the report it was "unusual" and of "uncertain significance". I'm wondering if this is what is causing my pain, especially at the end of my urine stream I get the shooting pain into my bladder and rectum right in the middle.

      I'm wondering what the next step would be, my gp is away for Xmas. Would maybe a cystoscopy be the next thing?

      I have also read about endometriosis of the bladder. Seeing as I have been diagnosed with endometriosis before, could this be possible?

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    • Posted

      Hi Lucy,

      The fact that you have nodular endo (which is a specific form) suggests that the one on the front is likely to be another nodule. We can't know for sure what it is but radiologists will say what they things look like and they have only said 'endometriosis deposit or endometrial irregularity'. They would usually say if it was suspect for malignancy. I assume the name of the radiologist will be on the report and I think I would be inclined to ring his/her secretary and express your concerns and ask if they can elaborate on what they think it might be.

      Yes endemetriosis of the bladder could be possible too. 

      Call them. Don't just let  it slide. If  it's causing you pain they may need to open you up to take a look around. Sometimes they can't know the full diagnosis without surgery to take a look around. 

      I hope this helps. 

      Debra 

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