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    My large intestine feels inflammed
    An_201594 posted:
    I have had bowel troubles for many years and have not been able to get diagnosed to really know how to treat it. I am currently having issues with my entire belly area from under my ribs to my pelvic. I hurt from side to side. I have bouts of indigestion, constipation, diareaha (sp?), horrible bloating. Sometimes my belly will get SO distended and it will feel as if it has a tight band across it. My intestine just under my ribs burns and feels irritated. I can go weeks without emptying out and have a couple of normal BM's once in awhile. When I do go it is not normal. Sometimes all this passes and everything gets normal all on its own and I go along fine. Then it will return unexpectedly and last for however long it decides. I don't know what to do for it while it lasts. I don't know how to eat or how to ease the indigestion, pain, bloating and constipation. I worry about my colon not getting cleaned out and getting cancer because it is never really fully empties. Does this sound familiar to anyone and if so, how do you manage it and what do you call it??
    denisem221 responded:
    I had all the same symptons as you and after winding up in the hospital after eating popcorn..tests and pain I found out I had diverticulitis. They gave me morphine for the pain but that is counterproductive and causes you to have constipation. Have you gone through any testing yet?
    julez67 responded:
    You sound a lot like I was a few years ago. I am now literally disabled, though the doctors think life is fine. NO it is not!!! The severe pain, bloating, nausea and NON EXISTING bowel movements have gotten worse. I don't know how long I can hang in. 2 scopes in past two months, placed on a high fiber diet and have not had a bowel movement, after 28 laxatives and 3 bottles of magnesium citrate, in three(3) weeks.
    I was at the GI office yesterday. I am supposed to increase my fiber (stops me up more), sit on the toilet at the same time 20 minutes every day for the next 4 weeks(no pushing) to mentally train my intestines to work . They have not worked right in 36 years and have basically quit working even with the help of laxatives. I am following doctors orders, but like I said, I have not used the restroom in THREE (3) WEEKS, I am in tears the pain is so severe.
    I look 10 months pregnant have gain 70 lbs. lost 20, and I have IBS?! The doctors give you that diagnosis because they are clueless also.
    Go to your ER, Tell Them You don't want pain meds and to be discharged, you need an answer. MRI you spine, your brain, as well as your abdomen. Tell them to even look for worms (larve) that is something that is a lot more common, goes undiagnosed because it can be VERY hard to find. I passed a whole lot of very long worms(took them to GI lab). They told me it was NORMAL! Never once have they run necessary test because it wasn't found in my stool culture. it wont be there unless they are dead. My 8 year old son went through it also and they still have not deemed it medically necessary to do anything. So start back with the ER and stay on them go back everyday untill someone listens to you. If you get an answer let me know and I will do the same for you!
    Annie_WebMD_Staff responded:
    Digestive problems can be difficult to diagnose as many community members here have written so don't give up.

    Are you seeing a gastrointestinal doctor otherwise known as a GI doctor? Those doctors specialize in the digestive tract.

    Please take a look at the top of this board for links to various digestive health centers -- you may find articles to help you out.

    Take care!

    - Annie
    Sign up for the WebMD email GI Newsletter!
    julez67 replied to Annie_WebMD_Staff's response:
    I am seeing another GI docter. I am not sure she is hearing what I am telling her though. I really do not want to start over with another new doctor. She seems as if she has some good points, but she doesn't understand that I can NOT go to the bathroom. I can not continue taking laxatives everyday as she said to do and the high fiber makes me worse. I have had previous surgery and had a few inches of my intestines removed, They did surgery because my intestines keep bulging into my bladder and visa-versa. Then all my insides fused together with scar tissue, I had another surgery and they accidentally cut my bowels open and had to call in a specialist to repair everything and finish seperating all my internal organs. I just don't think my new doctor is hearing this. She will not give me achance to speak, and I'm pretty sure this is going on agian, just much worse.
    Agian thank you for the advice and I have signed up for the newsletter.
    Julie B.
    Polarisld33 replied to julez67's response:
    My boyfriend has been having the same kind of problems for a few years now. It has made him unable to keep a job and since the doctors never came up with a diagnosis, he does not qualify for disability. If you ever find out what's wrong, it sounds like there are a lot of people who would be grateful to hear what the diagnosis is.

    He has been scoped from both ends and had other various scans. They tested for Crohns as well as several other diseases and never came back with anything other than confirmation that his intestines are inflamed, but they have no idea why. He looks like he has a "beer belly" but if you touch it, it's not flabby, it's firm, like when an ankle swells.

    Unfortunately for us, we don't have the money to continue to have tests run that tell us nothing, so we would be very appreciative if you would share what you find out...
    Annie_WebMD_Staff replied to julez67's response:
    Hi julez67,

    You've brought up some good points here. If your doctor isn't listening to you then it's time to listen to your inner feelings and find a new doctor. You know your body better than anyone else and so if you feel the need to get a second opinion and find another doctor who will listen to you, go for it!

    WebMD has a lot of articles about seeking second opinions , but one of my favorites is from an archived blog by Dr Bill Lloyd. He's writing about eye and vision problems but his blog about second opinions is applicable to everyone! Please click on the link: Second Opinions are Welcome

    Take care!

    - Annie
    Sign up for the WebMD email GI Newsletter!
    KailinBeck replied to julez67's response:
    would seriously seriously check into celiac's disease. it can be HIDDEN with a million and one symptoms. try going STRAIGHT OFF gluten for two weeks and see what happens.

    celiacs disease is your body's inability to digest the protein 'gluten'. it sits and sits in your intestines and WILL NOT BE ABSORBED. your only luck of getting a bunch of that finally out of you is if you luck out and eat something NOT containing it, that your body CAN absorb and digest, and pushes it out.

    call me crazy, just try it.
    LotaHossain responded:
    Except for the constipation, it sounds like what I have been going through for the past 23 months. I don't ever get stopped up, in fact, it's just the opposite- I have had diarrhea EVERYDAY for the past 23 months- it varies in severity from a thicker, peanut-butter-like consistency (which is a good day) to explosive burning "water" coming out of my bottom. Even though I have diarrhea, it also feels lie my intestines never fully empty and is accompanied by gas, nausea, bloating, indigestion, pain and sometimes heart-burn. I also have not been able to get any help, have been discharged from the er without them running any fecal/culture tests. The sever version comes and goes without warning. Alterations of my diet and exercise routines offer little releif and do not make it go completely away. My intestines often feel swollen and often I have a burning and or bubbling sensation traveling sporadically throughout my abdominopelvic area. I also do not know where to turn for help. If anyone can give answers. I'd greatly appreciate it.
    kristisez replied to LotaHossain's response:
    This sounds like a bacterial issue. Why in the world would they not do a culture of your bowels?

    Also, it makes me curious if any of you live in a similar geographic area. I've heard a story recently about a rare blood disorder (non-GI related) that has appeared in 1,300 children in a Texas community. That's no coincidence and I don't know what is being done to track this. But my point being how widespread are these issues that you posters are having?

    Any medical facility that would not do a bowel culture for chronic diarrhea has no business charging you for a visit in my view!
    kristisez replied to kristisez's response:
    Just saw how long ago the last post was. Hope you guys got some relief for your chronic issues. Best wishes!
    AlexanderH replied to julez67's response:
    Julez - please listen to what I have to say. I used to be almost like you and my symptoms are almost totally gone.

    #1 Unfortunately don't listen to what doctors tell you. They mean their best but digestive problems are not well studied, particularly the blanked diagnosis called "IBS"

    #2 Pick up a book called "Fiber Menace" by Konstantin Monastyrsky

    #3 Get on a LOW FIBER DIET immediately. The irony is that most doctors and nutritionists put you on a high fiber diet and tell you to drink tons of water, despite the fact that tons of researc shows that people with bowel motility issues are harmed by increasing fiber.

    My nutritionist told me the same thing - more fiber. And guess what, I was in pain all day.
    AlexanderH replied to julez67's response:
    Get off fiber. Go low fiber. it saved me.
    LotaHossain replied to kristisez's response:
    I live in Florida right now, but I was born and and have lived most of my life in El Paso, Texas. These symptoms, however, did not rear their ugly heads until AFTER I took a trip out of the US to Bangladesh back in 2009. The first SEVERAL diagnoses were giardiasis. I have been on antibiotics and Flagyl 5 times to "treat" the infection. I took everything as directed even though they only made the symptoms more severe. The diarrhea never went away even for a day after these treatments. I lost my last job due to the fact that I needed to use the restroom too frequently. I got little to no help from anywhere/anyone.

    About 4 months ago, I started a new regimen to try to lose weight which consisted of cutting down on fat, salt, fried foods and empty carbs. What carbs I ate were higher in fiber content and lots of whole grain. I ate more fruits and vegetables and lean meat and more lean protein. I used low-fat, reduced calorie milk, ate lowfat cheese and other diary products and ate low-fat / non-fat probiotic yogurt, lean protein, a banana and original Post Shredded wheat cereal every breakfast. I cut out onions (and fennel, leeks, shallots & chives) which I found increased my symptoms and cut down on caffeine as well. I took multivitamins (almost) everyday- (sometimes, I forgot). I started walking for at least 30 minutes at least 3-4 times a week and did other cardio (usually dancing) for at least 30 minutes - 1 hour at least once a week -- in addition to my usual routine. After the second week of this, my diarrhea and discomfort was gone! By the end of week 4, I had lost 18 lbs.

    By the end of week 8, I had lost 25 lbs and was looking and feeling great! No more tummy/intestine troubles! (at least not frequently, I still had a bout every now and then if I ate something with onion or high fat or deep fried.) This bliss was too good to be true, apparently, because shortly after month #2 of no diarrhea, it started to come back again. Slowly at first but now it is to the point that I am taking anti-diarrheal pills everyday to every other day to keep from running to the bathroom every 15 minutes, so as not to lose my new job position.

    The main thing that changed in my routine is the fact that I do not get to exercise as much as I did before my new job. I have gained back 8 lbs (and thankfully only that amount in these two months since). I have also noticed that other foods also seem to cause my problems: Lettuce, cucumbers, spinach, cilantro and raw vegetables all cause an immediate effect. IF I EAT A SALAD I LITERALLY AM RUNNING OFF TO THE BATHROOM WITHIN 30 MINUTES with bloating, gas, popping sensations, gastric sounds and explosive diarrhea.

    I've recently started increasing my exercise again, but so far, there isn't a change from my gastrointestinal problems. I don't have time to exercise as I did before I had my job. I haven't gained any more weight but I am not losing any either. I really don't know what to do and I don't know what this is and even though I have been advised to see a GI specialist, I cannot afford it.

    kristisez- I agree with you on that, unfortunately, that doesn't stop them from billing me... =(

    I've tried it all- high fiber, low fiber- doesn't seem to make a difference... I'm just so lost...
    LotaHossain replied to LotaHossain's response:
    Also, oatmeal, nuts and raw (and sometimes cooked) fruits such as apples, pears, and grapes give me almost immediate diarrhea...

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