Severe constant stomach cramps and doctors at a complete loss.

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I'm 20,

I gave both to my son 13months ago, since his birth I have had constant abdominal cramping, at first I thought it was the normal uterine cramping that came along with breast feeding but after 4 months of constant pain I realised something Was up so I asked my doctor and he said to come back in a couple of weeks if nothing had changed.

The only change is that the pain increases with every day that passes.

They have done numerous blood tests, urine tests, stool tests and I can't count how many pain killers and antibiotics I have taken.

All is normal and nothing has even come close to helping.

My doctor did find the bacteria that causes urine infections inside my vagina rather than where should be I.e. My bladder.

My pain is a general abdominal cramp, the worst of it is located in the middle and to the right hand side of my lower abdomen where I imagine my uterus and ovaries are located.

The pain varies day to day but NEVER goes away, my whole upper abdomen is more of an ache than a cramp but I have the constant feeling of heart burn but no actual heart burn.

The pain gets worse when I'm tired, hungry, stressed, laughing, on my period, when I drink alcohol and when I have caffeine.

I drink 2 units maybe once in a blue moon and I don't smoke, I have a balanced diet and I get a small but regular amount of exercise so I'm plenty healthy.

After 13 months of agony and completely mystifying my doctors I'm lost.

Anyone ever experienced anything remotely similar that could help at all??

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16 Replies

  • Posted

    Your pain sounds like IBS which can cause the intolerances you mention and feels worse under stress and with your period.  The pain can vary in location and intensity and goes along with heartburn, constipation or diarrhoea or both.  You can get nausea as well.  Try avoiding alcohol and caffeine and try a food diary to identify any food triggers.  Eat small amounts  but often.  Other common triggers are gluten, dairy and gassy vegetables such as cabbage, Brussel sprouts and broccoli.  Onions and garlic can also cause problems.    It will take time to uncover any food reactions.  However, at least you have identified drinks that you are sensitive to.

    If all your tests are negative, IBS can be diagnosed.  Has your doctor not mentioned IBS?.  You could always ask for a CT, endoscopy, colonoscopy celiac testing if these things have not been done.  It may reassure you.  You could also ask to see a dietician and try the Fodmap diet.

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    • Posted

      My doctors first thought was ibs but he's done all the tests you can do to diagnose it and all were negative, he also doesn't believe my symptoms say ibs.
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    • Posted

      He thought it may be pelvic inflammatory disease but he treated me for that and the course of tablets he gave me should have sorted it if that's what it was. Other than that he's not long Started investigating so he's not had to many ideas yet but he's not seen anything like this personally before.
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    • Posted

      You could try peppermint oil capsules or peppermint tea while waiting for your tests and results and see if that relieves the cramps.  Aloe Vera juice also helps some people.
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    • Posted

      I was wondering the same, because IBS is only the last possibility to give symptoms a name and no fear of damage to guts while symptoms after exclusion of anything else.... anything.

      Unfortunately often symptoms are labeled IBS too early therefore and investigation stopps.

      There is though the possibility if ultrasoundsigmoid/MRI wall thickness measurement. If it was under 3mm, it is not even IBS. (If it was more, can be anything if course, but the wrong labeling could be avoided) That's the only test I can think of.

      I guess her doc excluded probably parasites, food intolerances, malabsorbtions, allergies, and IBD;IBD sounding so similar to IBS, just one letter difference, hence gets confused maybe? IBD which can be tested via colonoscopy, MRI enterography, calprotectin AND capsule endoscopy. Some people, who were labeled IBS and had the routine works done, actually did have even Crohn found with capsule endoscopy or a parasite found after bowel prep or more sensitive repeated test (PCR). Hence my reservation of premature IBS diagnose. But I did wonder too, how doc excluded IBS with tests???

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  • Posted

    Hi alice35251

    You should go back to your doc and request an ultrasound scan of your abdomen. Perhaps some placenta was left behind or you may have a uterine fibroid or ovarian cyst...go back and request a second opinion ..this is your entitlement under the Patients Charter if you are in the UK...if you are not in UK you are still entitled to a second opinion......best wishes..

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    • Posted

      I am in the uk smile I have an ultrasound this coming Tuesday, but since my sons birth I've had 4 and they are all normal.
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    • Posted

      Hi alice35251

      Please let us know how you get on...if the USound shows nothing then you should request CT Scan and Colonoscopy...best wishes....

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  • Posted

    This sounds so much like my teenage daughter's ongoing, life disabling, continuous symptoms for months. Cramping 1-2x per minute for 10seconds or 1 every 2 minutes for 20-40 minutes intensely, so intense, that she rolls in pain or stops breathing, underlaying lower abdominal constant pain anyway, middle and right iliac fossa. No common stool (parasites, bacteria), urine, blood test has revealed anything, ultrasound of uterus and ovary normal, once a luteal 2.1cm cyst left (even is in normal size range anyway), gone a month later hence cannot be the reason for ongoing 24/7 pain, MRI enterography: no malrotation, no obvious ulcer or Crohn, gastroscopy only mild gastritis, colonoscopy biopsies showed no celiac disease, normal sugar enzymes and normal IgA, IgE, IgG range (hence all food avoidance diets never ever worked for her, we tried a LOT), no abnormalties visually (like Crohn) or in biopsies, laparoscopy was done, adhesions (? as to why unknown) cut, appendix removed (normal), free pelvic liquid sucked away (which is said to be normal for females) and still horrendous cramping pain afterwards, after weeks of healing. No one would go on looking for autoimmune disease since 'so much was investigated already' and are put in for: 'your pain got an own dynamic, a neuropath, a wrong brain wiring like phantom pain', need to learn to live with pain (?!!!), try antidepressants, but there are still a lot of possibilities -rare though- possible. Just to show you, what we had done in desparation of disabling pain to no avail. In your case one could say, your uterus involution pain has become an own dynamic, a 'phantom pain'. ? That's the equivalent what we were told (a gastrointestinal infection pain got own dynamic). Or also 'some virus' is made responsible to cause havoc for years before settling, if ever settling. Some say 'Borrelia' infection could go bad on nerves. ?

    IBS can be easily ruled out, if an image of MRI or CT imaging shows a sigmoid wall thickness less than 3mm. If more than 3mm it can be anything and needs further investigation. But less than 3mm is a 95% sensitivity that it is not IBS. IBS is often a wrong, too early 'easy' diagnose, and a parasite behind it, or food malabsorbtion or gastrointestinal other problems. It's just so often blamed like 'stress' when no obvious, quick, gross reason can be found and all rare possibilities were not considered.

    Also nobody seems to be aware, how disabling sudden but regular cramping pain can be and we need a solution.

    Have you also considered endometriosis? It needs MRI AND laparoscopy though for diagnose. Good luck, abdominal pain is a huge field.

    One side note which startled me in :

    "usual bladder bacteria....". ? The bladder, the urin in there should be sterile, no bacteria. Often e.coli (contamination from our colon) get there and cause a bladder infection. It is not rare to see, that also the very close to urin exit vagina has also contamination bacterial flora from the colon.

    If you had a wrong vaginal flora, it would be good to get it treated, I would highly recommend 'infecting' the vagina with the correct lactobacillus (Doderlein) from the pharmacy. In Austria you can buy 'Döderlein med', which have to be stored in the fridge (otherwise they are dead and useless), vaginal capsules. I don't know if you can get them at your place. You can google how to get a normal vaginal flora easily back. If a wrong bacteria flora could cause intense huge abdominal cramping, is totally new to me. Usually women don't feel anything, sometimes notice 'pus' and bad smell or get candida infection (fungi) itchy much easier due to missing acid, low pH. The right lactobacillus flora helps preventing any such wrong infections as the vagina (in contrary to the bladder) is NOT sterile.

    Good luck and please let me know if you found a reason, or anything that helped and if it is in months time.

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    • Posted

      PS: also my daughter experiences pain when laughing and coughing...I once mentioned, if it could be a (pelvic) muscle, that is damaged and can't heal...I was brushed off as not possible. We have no pain medication that works, normal nurifen or paracetamol does nothing, only narcotics would muffle the pain for 3 hours, but is no daily, just once a week option. We will see a pain specialist soon hoping he can inject something to block pelvic nerve or give a spasmolyticum, without GI side effects.
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    • Posted

      My doctor is going through every possibility that doesn't require surgery etc. First and then he's going to regret me to a surgeon if a gynocologist can't find anything wrong, but it's exhausting as my stomach never even takes a second to rest from cramping, I shall speak with my doctors about what you've said, thank.

      And what I meant was the bacteria that becomes present in your bladder when you have a urine infection was present in my vagina instead of where it should have been found (my bladder) I've been given things to treat it but my doctors not retested yet to see if it's gone wink

      Thanks again

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    • Posted

      Please let me know what 'every possibility' is since I have a good handful of  other ideas, that get refused (like neuronal antibody check, not the usual ANA, but ANNA or ca channel, or like CA125, like C1 Esterase Inhibitor. Yes, I am a trained med.scientist, but from overseas, full time mum, I have no way to get those tests done via laboratory contact. urine for porphyria, carcinoid. There are 100s of  tests, 100s if not 1000, no doc can order them, but click slowly through the list from more common to rare reasons, just some docs give up after the usual FBC, liver, electrolytes and few iron tests) 

      Please if you have anything tested or found,

      which I did not mention,

      pls pls let us know to check for the same or get ideas.

      These ongoing cramps are disabling, sleep taking and life distroying.

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