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Posted 02 December 2012 - 05:27 PM
I was google searching the fodmaps diet and came across this forum, and decided to hop in. Im a 28 y/o female with fairly recent diagnosis of ibs. Looking back, as early as elementary school aged I can pinpoint some symptoms, but nothing like I've had over the last 7 years. I can remember in the early grade school years constantly going to the nurse soon after I had gotten to school or after lunch, complaining of stomach pain. This follows my mornings of constant argument with my mom about eating breakfast. I was just never hungry in the morning, but thinking she had to be a good mom, was forced to eat something and also drink orange juice, every day. I can also remember having attacks while at family gatherings (still a joke that I can clear a room) but never connected it to the rich foods we generally have at holiday meals. I can also recall a few family walks in the woods that ended with me crouched behind a tree, crying, ashamed that I was (I call an attack "getting sick") getting sick in a near public environment. Without really complaining about it, I continued through school, but at some point decided to stop eating lunch at school. I would have the forced breakfast, and go the full day until about 3pm when I got home, and then binge, and in return get sick. I think part of me knew that If I didnt eat, I wouldnt have symptoms or have to worry about holding in gas in a small classroom. My friends came to eventually make jokes about it, as they would fall victim to my weekend episodes and as I have a pretty decent sense of humor, rolled with the punches and laughed along at how "She's just so stinky". At this age I didnt realize this was not normal, sitting on the sidelines during basketball practice with a stomach ache after having canned soup for lunch, etc. I survived high school and went on to college. For whatever reason, I do not remember having many attacks during those four years. I do specifically remember that I had a bit of a reputation at the summer camp I worked at after my senior year of college, we only had porta potties and I had a tendency to bomb them in the mornings..This was also the summer after I went to Mexico with my family, coincidentally my symptoms seemed to come back and get worse. Fast forward to six years later, and six years of suffering painful heartburn, the big "d", gas, bloating, cramping, depression and exhaustion. I would complain to my primary physician about these issues, however all she did was prescribe omeprazole for the heartburn, and blamed the rest of my symptoms on my drinking habits. (?...really b*tch?) I had an endoscopy, which turned up a small peptic ulcer, and continuted on the omeprazole regiment. Later, I was overjoyed to find a new doctor, who immediately tested me for h pylori amongst other things. Turns out the h pylori was the culprit in the majority of my symptoms. I was overjoyed that I would take a 2 week course of antibiotics and would be cured. Yay! For two weeks after the antibiotics, I was symptom free. Then came another attack. and another, and a few more. After waiting it out for a month, I was back at the new dr.s office and was referred to a specialist. As im sure all of you are aware, it takes months to see a specialist. Finally my day came, and as I explained all of my symptoms and embarassing situations, I burst into tears. I was finally going to fix this, and had found an awesome doctor to help me. He was amazing - gently reassuring me that many people that suffer for so long upon finding relief, will cry. I wasnt alone, this wasnt my fault (contradictory to what my mom thought), and he was going to help me. He started me on Lomotil to manage the symptoms, and scheduled me for and endoscopy and colonoscopy to rule out any number of problems, though the main problem suspected was IBS. Secretly hoping they would find something that was more easily treatable, I excitedly went in and had both done. Results came back, and while they found white blood cells in my small intestine that could indiciate celiac, my blood panels came back negative for that. At this point my awesome new gastroenterologist started me on nortriptyline to treat the IBS. For the most part at this point I can now finally identify my triggers, which I couldnt do when I had the h pylori, (lettuce, fried food, dairy, etc) but still sometimes have days where I'm tossing back lomotils, and praying to whoever is out there that I can make it through a night out with friends without having an attack. I just saw him again the other day, and we decided to up my nortriptyline, as many of my attacks are related to anxiety/stress. He also suggested I try the Fodmaps diet, which has actually been going pretty well. We also are trying Dicyclomine, as I was still getting some cramping followed by "d". So far, it is Sunday, Ive only gotten sick once since Friday, (pretty sure I can blame it on the hot sauce I daringly put on my eggs) and I'm hopeful for whats to come on the fodmaps diet. It sucks, I cant eat whatever I want, but im slowing coming to terms with the fact that I probably never will. What worries me though, is that there is such a large population in my age range and also female that are also experiencing these symptoms.. Like many other women on here I notice a definite correlation between my cycle and my attacks, (I've since switched to the birth control that has you only get 4 periods per year) . I wonder what is going on that this is happening, or are we just noticing now? Sorry this was so long, but if anyone can relate Im glad to know that im not alone, and just know you arent either. I look forward to talking to everyone, comparing notes and just in general connecting. Here's to an attack free week to everyone - cheers!