Severe IBS symptoms making life hell

Edited , 6 users are following.

Interesting reading all these comments. I am a male age 49 and have been experiencing severe ibs symptoms for several years now.

Lose watery stools, lower abdominal and back pain, hip pain, food intolerance and anxiety and depression.

I have had blood and stool tests, sigmoidoscopy, chest xray and am awaiting ultrasound in a couple of weeks.

I just can't believe how bad I feel everyday and it's just ibs. I am exhausted all the time, just with worry.

I was recently taken to a & e with suspected heart attack, but they discovered a hiatal hernia. I also have diverticular disease.

Could all the symptoms I am experiencing be because of these two issues or is it something else..

Searching for answers but only get more questions...

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11 Replies

  • Edited

    hi light, i think i would dig. i think there is more to what you have than just IBS. has your doctor ruled everything else out, including coeliac disease? ask for much more investigation! i hope you get some answers, don't suffer like this it's totally unfair! good luck

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    • Posted

      All test results keep coming back clear. I have had so many tests, that I can't remember exactly what I've had.

      I believe I had a gluten test and it was normal. I have been told that the more I worry the worse the symptoms will become, typical with ibs.

      I tried cutting out dairy for a while and symptoms eased somewhat. Today I ate yogurt and the pain has come back with a vengeance. I guess there is some lactose intolerance.

      All of this happened a few years ago after a course of strong antibiotics for a uti... They made me feel terrible. I have had ibs type symptoms ever since...

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    • Posted

      hi light, i think in that case you are probably right. go back to your doctor's and ask for a referral for a lactose test. this will definitely tell you if you have this and how to progress! good luck, i hope you find the correct results out.

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  • Posted

    Hello my friend.

    your post is almost as if I wrote it myself. i have been having major intestinal issues for some time now. same loose watery stools, etc.

    like you I am also suffering from anxiety and likely some depression as a result. I dont have the energy I once had and I am constantly on edge of having a panic attack thinking the worst about my health.

    this all started for me in January. I've since had several blood draws, chest x-rays, an ultrasound, and an upper gi endoscopy. the endoscopy didn't turn anything up except a small hiatal hernia which was of no concern. the ultrasound diagnosed me with fatty liver, though I am not drastically overweight by any means. this scares me even more. most recently atop all the ibs symptoms I've been suffering from some discomfort in the right upper quadrant of my abdomen just around the base of my ribs.

    my doctor prescribed me citalopram back in January and continues to blame everything on anxiety. I've followed up with another Dr and she has been good about running tests to rule things out.

    so far nothing definitive has come from testing, but today I go in for a follow up on the endoscopy. going to definitely discuss the rest of the symptoms I've been experiencing and I believe the doc is going to schedule a colonoscopy as well.

    I'd like to keep in touch and see if you come up with any answers and I will let you know if I do as well.

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    • Edited

      Hi there

      Many thanks for your reply... Today was a bad today whereas yesterday was good... No two days are the same and like you my health anxiety is running high.

      My symptoms have been ongoing for nearly two years now, after taking some God awful antibiotics called Macrobid... I have Been bad ever since. I have tried a probiotic pill, but that makes my loose stools worse, as well as an enzyme supplement to no avail.

      Currently I have backache and abdominal discomfort, as well as hip pain and like you a hiatal hernia, although I can't get an endoscopy because of covid.

      I was recently told that maybe I have fibromyalgia because of the ibs connection, constant pain which also seems to attack many different parts of my body.

      I don't know what's worse my ibs symptoms or the chronic anxiety I feel, I am feeling down everyday....

      Moderator comment: I have removed the email address as we do not publish these in the forums. If users wish to exchange contact details please use the Private Message service.

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    • Posted

      this sounds like gallbladder @randall28, fatty liver can also be a sign of your gallbladder not working, even after my removal my liver is still showing signs of been fatty and am not overweight.

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    • Posted

      I thought maybe so too. I have an appointment Wednesday to do a contrast dye x-ray on my gallbladder. ultrasound didn't pick anything up on it, but the doc said thats not 100% fool proof. said the x-rays will be more definitive.

      when you had gallbladder issues did it mess with your intestines as well? mine are all over the place. as is my appetite and what not.

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  • Posted

    Hi interesting reading all the posts. I have just recently been diagnosed with diverticulitis following blood test, xray and ct scan. Awaiting a colonoscopy in 6 weeks to confirm it. I also believe i have ibs as well from the syptoms listed and other comments. interesting to know that you can have really bad back and hip pain as I also have this and was worried in case it was something else. The most frustrating thing is that due to covid I am unable to see my GP to discuss matters and telephone consultations are just not the same. I was told to go on a soft diet but given no advice as to what foods to eat. I am currently on a liquid diet, water and soups as I cannot tolerate anything else.

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    • Posted

      So sorry to hear about your symptoms.

      I find myself very aware of my body these days and notice the slightest change.

      I am supposed to follow a low fodmap diet but with my busy lifestyle it is virtually impossible. I have recently cut out dairy and am finding it helps. Tonight I stupidly ate advacado and am paying for it now.

      I was also taking a probiotic pill each day, which I have now stopped and have found my diarrhoea has stopped.

      I do get a lot of abdominal discomfort, back and hip pain which scares me to death, because I just don't know for sure it is ibs. I spoke to a physio a few days ago who said my symptoms were also mechanical in nature, but this was only on the phone, due to COVID.

      I have an ultrasound on Thursday, which will hopefully throw up some more clues.

      What does your hip and back pain feel like? Is it there all the time!?

      I have Diverticular Disease as well and tonight I am feeling a sharp pain in my left side, not sure if it's related or not...?

      Above all my anxiety is sky high, which makes everything worse!

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  • Posted

    Thursday, I attended an ultrasound appointment at a decidedly empty St Mary's Treatment Centre in Portsmouth. This latest consultation is yet another in a long line, as I try and get to grips with my IBS diagnosis. As a rule an IBS sufferer would not have to undergo such a series of comprehensive tests, but as I approach fifty years of age, it is important that my GP rules out anything sinister that may account for the severity of my symptoms. I have been suffering from a number of gastrointestinal issues for several years now, ever since I was prescribed a course of antibiotics to treat a particularly nasty UTI; my gut health just hasn't been the same since.

    I was diagnosed with diverticular disease several years ago, after undergoing a sigmoidoscopy; I thought I finally had a diagnosis, that with careful management, would lead to a more comfortable life. Eating the right foods and other lifestyle changes, should go a long way in helping me live with the common condition. It really isn't unusual for someone of my age to suffer from this disorder; a western diet and behaviours all contribute towards the small pouches that form in the sigmoid colon, creating discomfort, occasional infection and sporadic complications. However, the pain I was experiencing, didn't conform to the stereotypical norms for this indisposition.

    I decided to try and find answers, as to what exactly was going on. The Doctors constantly put my GI malaise and anxiety down to IBS, as they frequently do, when they can't find answers. To be honest it was easy to see why, I have all the classic symptoms, which do seem to be exacerbated by stress. A prescription of Mebeverine, Buscopan, probiotic pills and enzymes were given, but did little to ease the symptoms. I changed my diet, discovering by accident that I was lactose intolerant. I stopped eating normal bread, swapping to Sour Dough alternatives instead and significantly reduced my intake of fatty, sugary and spicy foods. This dramatic change has actually helped a lot, and I am no longer suffering from the extreme complications I used to experience; nevertheless, something inside was telling me there was more to this and I continued to seek answers.

    Three months ago I was taken to Hospital, in the middle of this pandemic, with a suspected heart attack and was given a series of tests to determine the cause of the agony. Eventually the A&E Doctor came back to me with a Hiatal Hernia diagnosis, and I was immediately prescribed Omeprazole to help with the intense pain. The effectiveness of this drug soon waned, and I was given a twice daily dose of Lansoprazole instead, which thankfully does its job and I have little ongoing irritation and even less flare-ups than I used too. Once again, I thought I finally had the answer and hoped things would start to get back to normal; nothing could be further from the truth, and my symptoms just got worse, prompting me to insist that my GP does everything he can to get to the bottom of this saga.

    It has been difficult and challenging trying to get answers during this COVID pandemic, but my surgery have been amazing at helping me try to solve this GI jigsaw. I have had blood, urine and stool tests as well as physical examinations, but am still no clearer as to what is going on. Recently, after a terrible bout of pain I filled in an online form at my surgery urging my GP to refer me for an ultrasound, a procedure I had read about online and something that could shed further light on my problems. He agreed to my request and I went for the scan on Thursday this week.

    During the ultrasound, which did hurt it has to be said, the consultant discovered I had gallstones and said it was likely my gall bladder would have to be removed, as these small stones would otherwise keep coming back. She reassured me this was perfectly normal and would be carried out during keyhole surgery, stressing that you can live quite happily without the gall bladder. Again I was given yet another piece in the GI jigsaw I have been trying to put together, but whether this is the end of the matter, I very much doubt.

    Because we are living through a pandemic, I am not able to have an endoscopy and further sigmoidoscopy recommended by my Doctor, so I still don't have a full picture of my circumstances. I have no idea when any operation will be scheduled, because all non-essential surgical interventions are on hold, but I am at least happier I am beginning to understand the issues, that have been affecting me over the last few years. Everyone I have spoken to and discussed my problems with, thought I was overreacting I am sure, saying my anxiety was responsible for the pain, but I know now that wasn't the case, and I was right to pursue answers. I do have IBS, but there are clearly other factors at play here; as the consultant said on Thursday, 'I will probably see a reduction in symptoms, when all the gastrointestinal problems are solved,' muddling through temporarily, until I can finally breathe happily again. Too often we are fobbed off and discouraged from seeking answers to problems, that can all to easily be defined as IBS. It is up to us to insist, scream and shout if necessary, in order to feel well and alive once again, getting the treatment we deserve and care that is so often lacking!

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  • Posted

    This sounds very similar to symptoms that i have been suffering with over the past 2 years or so. I have also been diagnosed with IBS after multiple different tests. They have done so many tests on me over the past 2 years (listed below)

    Blood tests

    CRP Blood test


    Spirometry Test


    Breast ultrasound

    Holter Monitor (24 hours)


    abdominal ultrasound

    chest x ray

    pelvic ultrasound

    Stool sample

    Everything came back clear, so they put it down to IBS. Since starting with symptoms which include so many different things. Ribcage discomfort, upper/middle and lower backache, cramping, bloated, constipation and stool changes. My stress levels and anxiety is through the roof because its a constant worry, its definitely affecting my everyday life because its like a dark cloud following me around because i cant accept that all of this can only be IBS. I'm moody, irritable, short tempered, distant, distracted. But all i get told is to try yoga, meditating and counselling. Good luck trying to get in with a counselor during a worldwide pandemic, so instead i just plod on each day and try and push it to the back of my mind. I guess the point i'm trying to make is that you're not alone, it seems many of us are in the same boat.

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