How y’all feeling?

So, my IBS continues to be fairly well under control, which is very cool but it does mean that I don’t have a lot of personal IBS stuff to write about at the moment, so I thought I’d ask you guys how you are all doing!

So how are you? Has it been a good week, or a bad one? Is there anything you’d like to vent about, or discuss, or ask me? Anything you just wanna get off your chest? Did you have a nightmare diarrhea attack, or a ridiculous comment from a colleague that you want to make fun of?

Please let me know how you are all doing, and if there is anyone who’s having a particularly bad time then I’ll offer any support I can (not medical advice of course, but emotional support and resources etc) and we can all cheer each other up. Hopefully.

So just click on the “Your comments” link if you would like to let me know what’s going on in your own IBS universe.

21 Responses to How y’all feeling?

  1. Hey Sophie, pleased to hear that things seem to be under control – what are you attributing this to?
    Things aren’t too bad with me either, I think my main breakthrough came when I looked at diet, in particular wheat and dairy.
    Keep up the good work!
    Pinky.

  2. tummyblogger

    I’m good. Taking Align, a probiotic, has sort of topped off my regimen, and most days my tummy is great. I’m gradually adding fruits and vegetables.

  3. Stomach Maddness

    Ok a vent would be pretty good for me today as its kinda the aniversary of my tummy troubles.

    A year ago I got sick on and off with a tummy bug and eventually it just didn’t go away. I have chronic upper left stomach pain, reflux, nausea massive weight loss and mainly on and off diarrhoea but that has been better since I started taking calcium. It has been a challenging year I still don’t know if what I have is IBS and I resisted researching the condition because I was pretty scared of something that has no ‘cure’ as such.

    I am ill almost every day and stopped working many months ago because I was just too ill. I have struggled on and off with depression and guilt for being ill all the time (as silly as that sounds). I was put on anti-depressants for chronic pain relief but have decided to get off them as the side affects and the apathy/lack of sex drive were awful and I was not convinved they were actually doing any real good (the pain was still there).

    Getting off the anti-depressants is quite a struggle I have been very, very down some days and then exstatically happy the next (so major mood swings). At the moment I am trying sugessted natural remedies one at a time. This site is wonderful for that and I truly appreciate how helpful it has been.

    My greatest frustration throughout this period has been the amount of medication that has been prescribed for me. My cupboards burst with pills. Doctors seem to take just a minute to prescribe drugs that can play even more havoc with your system. I have been constantly refered on to one doctor and then the next – the list is awesome! But it feels like they are just palming me off to the next person. I have recenly stopped seeing my immunoligist regarding food intolerances because I was losing even more weight and didn’t seem to be getting anywhere, because he kept telling me what would and would not be a problem (eg. telling me red-meat should be fine, and it really isn’t). I feel like these doctors sit back from behind their desks and judge you in less than 15mins. granted i have not had good experiences. but in saying that there have been a few that have been wonderful.

    I am just trying to take one day at a time at the moment. I feel like have been well and truly through the ‘mill’ with this illness. This is not how i imagined my life would be (but none of us do!). Thanks for letting me vent. :)

  4. rachel, erie, PA - USA

    Glad to hear that things are going better for you! I have been significantly better over the last 4 months then I was at the beginning of 2007. It’s partly attributed, I know, to the fact I’ve been on anti-anxiety medication (Zoloft) which is helping me to not obsess so much over my stomach and the nausea that will put me in a panic that I’m going to vomit (I’ve diagnosed myself with that specific paranoia to accompany my doctor-diagnosed IBS). I had a full colonoscopy in February that was a horrible experience, which turned out all clear – a relief, and yet not, as I’m sure you can all understand.

    I still have some pretty bad attacks… usually nausea for me now means I am going to have an IBS experience, but with the help of the anti-stress/depressent/OCD meds, it helps me to handle it better.

    StomachMadness: I just read your post and saw some of your experiences were similar. I found that I also had the lack of sex-drive on the medication, but it only lasted for about 4 months, and now my sex drive seems to be back to normal (relatively). And for me, feeling better on a day to day basis has been easier. But if its not helping you, it’s not – and everyone has to find their own solutions.

    The nice thing is I haven’t been constipated. the bad thing – feeling better has allowed me to eat more and therefore i’ve put on about 5 lbs which i’m not happy about but i think i can manage it. thanks for reading/listening.

  5. I was dx with Fructose Intolerance AND IBS a year and ahalf ago….I feel it has taken over my life. Everything has changed… my diet, me as a person, everything. Every time I go to the doctor, they just want to give you another pill. I have a new appreciation for my health. Even tho I thought I was a healthy person before, really conscience of what I ate, excersize, was always in my weight range…etc.
    It is good to find a site to share feelings.
    Thank You

  6. It’s been an okay week for me. I’m thrilled that I found such a great website! I’m getting nervous about college starting soon, and I get so frustrated when people tell me to “relax!” I’m glad you’re having a good week so far.

  7. Hi guys – Pinky, I’m attributing my wellness to a number of things, including continuing with the gluten-free diet, using Normacol and Celevac fibre, magnesium citrate tablets plus vitamin D supplements.

    Stomach Madness – sorry you needed to vent, I know how it can all drag on and just wear you down. I’d definitely keep pushing for a diagnosis, if the docs haven’t even come up with a diagnosis after a year that’s really not good enough. I guess you’ve seen a gastro specialist already?

    Agent Brit – yeah, people can just drive you crazy can’t they! What a bizarre view of IBS some people seem to have – all those millions of people who are giving themselves diarrhea 10 times a day because they’re a bit uptight, if they would only calm down and take a deep breath there’d be no problem.
    I often wonder what people like that think IBS specialists do all day – next patient please, “Hello Miss Brit, take a deep breath and relax, CURED”, next patient please, “Hello Miss Doolally, calm it right down please, CURED”, next patient please…

  8. Ive been on and of nauseous and lethargic for about 5 days now. Currently constipated since this morning, which is new for me, usually I have 2 BMs a day, im about to go to bed now and have not had a BM thus causing my ab pain to linger. I lost 2 pounds this week due to not eating right. I hope this clears up soon I have not been able to work (Luckily though I work from home!)

  9. Hello, Your site and tale are very interesting. I suffered from severe IBS for more than twenty years. I had a lot of other disparate symptoms too, but it never occurred to me that they could be caused by the same thing.

    Trying to lose weight about five years ago, I did the Atkins thing and surprisingly found myself feeling much better in many ways including the IBS. I found a book about IBS diet and an illness called ankylosing spondylitis and saw that the symptoms were very similar and tried following the diet and improved a great deal but still wasn’t well.

    A year of argumentation finally talked my doc into giving me the genetic test for this disease but proved only that I didn’t have it. From this I decided that I must have some parasite, bacteria, virus or fungus in the gut and took the anti parasite herbal treatment. I’m still not sure if this made a difference, sometimes I used too many things together.

    I started taking olive leaf extract and grapefruit pip extract and these things made me feel much better but they also killed off everything in the gut and I had to use a lot of good bacteria too, a couple of hours afterwards, otherwise I got worse again with a vengeance. I used a really good probiotic called primal defense.

    I was feeling a whole lot better and my symptoms were greatly relieved. Apart from the stomach and gut problems you describe so well, a few of my other symptoms follow: I had foot pains that were like walking on knives, often spontaneious internal haemmorrhaeges anywhere in the body, the nastiest of which made the whites of my eyes completely red like dracula, debilitating bachaches of every kind, extreme stiffness in all my joints so I couldn’t twist my torso enough to wipe my bottom or back my car and sharp stabbing pains anywhere in my body at different times.

    The list is way too long to write down here but the worst of the lot was the brainfog which made me slow and stupid; I was used to being quite quick and sharp in the mind. Really that resulted in a kind of personality change that would seem permanent until very occasionally my old me got a momentary peak through to recognition.

    The olive leaf and grapefruit pip stuff worked pretty well but not altogether and I still didn’t know what was causing everything, but at least I now knew that these were not separate undiagnosable illnesses anymore and I spent years researching on the net, too ill to do anything else.

    A couple of months ago after a bad spell again, I decided that systemic candidiasis could possibly cover my symptoms and would at least be easy to eliminate, so I started to research it and found oreganol, a very concentrated oregano extract. I also used Candigest, an enzyme based alternative candida treatment.

    Within two weeks all my symptoms went away except a couple of instances where a little damage has become permanent. I am now 57 and have been suffering since I was a little girl but since I had learned to cope with the more obvious symptoms of candida it took fifty years to find out that I had it.

    As it turns out, when candidiasis has spread through the gut wall and invaded every part of the body as it did with me, it can turn eventually into blood poisoning, organ failure and death. I only found that out last week and I’m probably very lucky that that hasn’t happened.

    It is apparently a much more common disease than has been believed and quite hard to get rid of. It almost always causes irritable bowel though obviously IBS can have other causes.

    Anyone with IBS would do well to eliminate candidiasis from the possible causes, which isn’t so hard with oreganol and candigest. olive leaf can do it too but takes much longer. Since it is such an insidious and dangerous disease, I would advise any longstanding IBS sufferer to check it out. Get well soon, sue.

  10. Hi Sue – glad to hear you’re feeling better! I’d be careful about assuming your symptoms were due to candidiasis though – you say the candida had spread through the gut wall and invaded your body, but how do you know that? The supplements you took could have any number of effects, it doesn’t prove you had candida.

    And it’s true that candida can spread to places like the throat, and these infections may be dangerous, but that’s in patients who are already extremely sick and have a compromised immune system, like AIDS patients. Candida is a yeast which occurs naturally in all of us, and it is only when the immune system is compromised that it can grow so much.

    IBS does not compromise the immune system, and there is absolutely no serious risk to IBS patients from candida infections. IBS is so common that if a life-threatening candida infection was the cause, we’d have patients dropping like flies all over the place!

    Candida is, unfortunately, a diagnosis beloved of the alternative health industry, and one that is handed out like candy. There is very little if any evidence to suggest IBS is related to candida overgrowth in the gut.

    I would advise anyone with IBS to be wary of anyone who is telling you you have candida, and to ask them for scientific evidence and research studies to back up their claims.

  11. Dear Sophie, Of course, you are right! I cannot be sure that I have or have had candidiasis. I didn’t want to make my comment so long and therefore I didn’t write the following:

    I had constant vaginal thrush since before the age of ten and I learnt to cope with it very well so it didn’t bother me. I always knew that I had a tendency to get thrush and it is only recently that I realise that I had it all the time. It’s not a tendency at all. One of the reasons that i din’t look into candida was just because I regarded candida as the number one syndrome for hypochondriacs and didn’t take it seriously. Whatever may have been causing my diagnosed IBS could have been any number of nasties that the specialists didn’t find,they certainly didn’t look for any kind of parasite, but I did realise in the end that I knew at least that I did have candida.

    The medical profession does recognise the seriousness of candidiasis, particularly as a hospital-spread disease, often when patients have catheters. Consider also that it has taken the medical profession an awfully long time to recognise for instance, that ulcers in the digestive system are caused by the bacteria helicobacter pylori and not by bad nerves. This is a recent discovery.

    In my case I wasn’t extremely sick in any other way that I know of and I have not noticed that my immune system has been compromised throughout my younger life. But as this illness, the possible candidiasis, got worse I realised that I may have to spend the rest of my life in a wheelchair. This is a fifty year progression of the disease however.

    I am certainly not telling anyone with IBS that they have candida. My point was rather that it is a fairly easy possible cause to eliminate and therefore know that the IBS is caused by something else. I sincerely hope that I have not misled or offended anyone. I am so incredibly happy to have stumbled on my own cure that I felt it would be worth sharing my experiences. All the best, Sue

  12. Hi all. I just read Sue’s comment about candida and agree that it is an aggressive little fiend. I further agree with the oregano oil. But Sue, if you’re still out there, I was wondering if you heard that it tends to return? Once you know the symptoms then you can again take steps to control. With me I think of it as separate from the IBS and the IC (another condition I have). But probably makes them both worse as a cold or flu might.

    There’s some scientists that believe they will find a bacterial/viral/microbial source for every single illness. However, my understanding is that candida is part of most people’s ecology and that with some it gets the upper hand? If you think about it, infection is quite common in weakened areas of the body. So with the IC (ulcers in the bladder) there was a study done to see if there could be a bacterial link. The bladder is supposed to be a somewhat sterile environment. Biopsies were actually taken and sure enough IC patients with bacteria greatly outnumbered controls. But there were so many different types of bacteria with the IC that they concluded these were secondary infections and were potentially making symptoms worse but not the root cause. I tend to think the same is true with candida…a secondary infection in the gut, but still very nasty. Sue, is your tongue coated at times? Lovely I know.

    It’s all very complicated. I’ve been reading about lectins (poisons of sorts) in foods and their possible role in disease. I’m of the belief that food intolerances, allergies, IBS, candida overgrowth, celiac sprue are branches on the tree of something we’re doing wrong. If anyone has any idea about what the root of all evil is please clue me in.

    Sophie, have you noticed all the attention sunlight/vitamin D is getting lately. It truly sounds like one factor that is missing that could help many of your readers. Afterall, we descended from beings that supposedly were in the sun all day long. Remove one card and the whole deck falls? Sharon

  13. I have only recently found your site and have just spent HOURS reading it. Still havn’t had time to read others comments but I will. I have also passed it on to two friends who have IBS. My symptoms have changed over the four years or so that I have had it. Now, it affects me mainly at night and sometimes I actually get a good nights sleep. I will write more of my experiences when I have more time, but it is so good to know that there are others in the same boat! I really sometimes think that if this is all there is then life is hardly worth living. Then I get a few good days. Thanks very much Sophie.

  14. what do you think about MS/IBS
    I have both!
    Anyone else in this situation?
    Would love to hear from them
    Carol

  15. Hi Carol. I just wanted to respond to your question. I personally have never read about a connection between IBS and MS. I have my beliefs about disease and the seeming rise in certain ones. The theory that I’ve bought into is a genetic predisposition and an environmental trigger.

    On the more bizarre side there’s this blood type theory that’s been so discredited I hate to even mention it. Even though no advice is offered for MS, the naturopath that came up with the theory claims that in his practice MS only strikes persons with type B blood. He claims that type Os and type As are practically immune? For that matter, he claims that type Bs are susceptible to all these “exotic” auto immune diseases including ALS and I believe Lupus, Sjorgens. In my very small world all the people I’ve encountered with these illness’ have indeed been type B – about six. But when it comes to allergies, IBS, heartburn, crohns, UC – they’re always type O.

    Supposedly Type O is the most common and compromises about 50% of the population. Followed by Type A, then B, then AB. Carol, keep us posted as to how you’re doing ok? Sharon

  16. Carol, I have ME/FM, as well as IBS. IBS is considered a ‘sattelite’ condition for ME and fibromyalgia. The majority of all sufferers of those conditions will also present with IBS. This is very well documented. I also suffer from thrush. However, getting the thrush under control does not help any of my other conditions, they simply ‘carry on’ as they were. Of course, the problem is that the majority of doctors still refuse to acknowledge either ME or FM as ‘real’ conditions. To most of them our IBS simply confirms their belief that these are mental, as opposed to physical conditions. It has been an uphill battle. I have suffered from IBS for nearly my entire life, and first presented with severe ME symptoms in 1972. I am now 62, and have finally found a doctor who does believe in all of these conditions and treats me for all of them. It is nearly impossible to find such a one. I wish I were able to clone him and send him off to the rest of the world. One clue that you may have found a great doctor is that if he/she has qualified in palliative medicine he will be sympathetic, most likely, to your IBS and treat you well.

  17. Hi,
    Just wanted to vent. I have been having a horrible time with my IBS. I as diagnosed about 12 years ago, probably have had it since I was younger. I was doing great for about two years, decided to stop taking my medication (Robinul) and just needed immodium once in a while. Well my husband got a new job and I was left to care for the children and run the house by myself. Things started to get more stressful and I no longer had the prescription and thought I would manage with immodium. The pain has been so severe the past couple of months that I decided to go back to my GP and she prescribed Lexapro to relieve the stress and see if it could get me back to normal. Well it has only been two weeks and I am not any better, I cannot go on any trips (1 1/2 hours – 2 hours) My son had to go to a pediatric gastroenterologist today and I had to have my husband turn around and bring me home because the pain was so severe I would never be able to get there. He is getting so fustrated because we cannot do anything as a family that involves me leaving the house. I am going to make an appointment with my gastroenterologist today and hopefully he will give me something to help. Thanks for letting me vent.

  18. The poster above who is 57 sounds almost like me. i have had IBS-C for 16 yrs and just had lab tests done which had high amounts of candida, no parasites although I still think I may have some. Anyways, the chiro dr who sent me for the test put me on two supplements, Zymex & Multi-zyme. I am thinking of adding oregano oil also. I wonder if it is okay to mix them.
    I also am reading the IBS book about low starch diet & AS. I feel like I am on the same path you were. My test though did detect some blood in stool so I do think I will have colonoscopy done just in case.
    I will do anything to feel better at this point.

  19. Hi everyone. I just discovered this site and its nice to read that people are going through the same things I am. I am 24 years old, and have recently been diagnosed with IBS..In the last year i have had so much trouble with my guts, and it has caused me to live in fear. I dont like the idea of going on trips for very long, or being anywhere that there isnt a washroom near by. I also have anxiety problems, which I am trying to deal with. I feel that they are definetly related. I wish I could just relax and live in peace. I am so afraid of living like this! My doctor prescribed me an anti-anxiety (clonazepam) for occasional bouts of anxiety, but I dont take more than 1 pill a week really.. i am wondering if i should be on an anti-depressant instead. I feel funny about that though because I dont feel depressed really. anyhow, thanks for listening

  20. Hello everyone. After almost 2 years of having daily diarrhea (up to 8 times a day) and severe cramps I was finally diagnosed with IBS 4 wks ago. I have taken more immodium over the past 2 years than any person would normally take in a lifetime!
    My doctor has prescribed a very low dose of anti-depressants which I was reluctant to take at first, but 4 wks on they are actually doing the trick. I have to say it’s such a relief to feel human again and I just hope that it lasts. Being a busy working mum of 29 (almost 30!) I would like to find an alternative to these pills but I’m just making the most of feeling well while it lasts.
    Thanks for this site it’s fantastic!

  21. Hi again!
    Well almost 3 wks on since I was on top of the world and things have taken a turn again. I have to say that I’ve only had a few bad days but as you all know they do get you down.
    A friend of mine has suggested that I should try Colonic Hydrotherapy, but I haven’t seen anybody else mention that they’ve tried it, but to be honest I’ve starting to feel like I will try ANYTHING once again.