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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm 19 years old and IBS has affected my life so much. I hardly ever went to any friends houses or had any friends up to mine. School was a huge problem for me, especially middle school and high school. My IBS started when I was very young and started getting very bad in 4th or 5th grade. I tried to be homeschooled in high school it got so bad but the doctor wouldn't sign the forms. I had a colonoscopy when I was 4 or 5 to make sure there was nothing wrong with me. Then I had a bad flareup in high school and had another one but there was nothing wrong and the doctor said it was just IBS-D. I went to the doctor constantly through high school to try to find something, anything, to help my symptoms. The doctors put me on everything they could that wasn't addicting or very dangerous. Everything from a pill you take before you eat to coat your stomach to a nerve medicine. None of these helped me to any degree. I've also been diagnosed as lactose intolerant but due to my intense love for chocolate milk lol, I had a big glass every now and then, and when I did, sometimes my IBS didn't seem to bother me as bad, well none really. But then sometimes the milk would cause diarrhea because of the lactose intolerance so really it was a lose lose situation. But I never had thought about calcium having anything to do with my stomach problems. Neither had the doctors apparently, but I started taking two calcium vitamins a day and for over a month now my IBS-D has improved dramatically! I'm now staying with my boyfriend and his parents a lot and his parents bedroom is right beside the bathrooms and I was always so embarrassed to have to go to the bathroom but since taking the calcium, all of the embarrassing bathroom noises are gone! But when I miss just two vitamins I begin to have problems again. I just hope this method continues to work for me and I wanted to share with EVERYONE who hasn't tried this. Best of luck to everyone with this problem!
 

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This almost sounds too good to be true.Could this be psychosomatic? Placebo effect. I know my symptoms improve when certainfactors arise. For example, I was living withroommates that were loud, disrespectful, stressful.The day I ended their lease my bowel movements wereperfect for months. I had D for the last month my ex and I were together.The day we broke up, my d went away. Or when I had to give a lecture to physicians; two weeksprior I was so stressed, I had diarrhea the whole time andon the day of, I could not eat. The next day? Perfectlyformed stool. For me and for many IBSers, it is indeed in the head. This in no way reduces the severity of the disease.It simply means this disease is a mind/body one.Glad to hear you are doing well though, no matter themechanism of the supplement. Thanks for sharing yourstory. I'm going to look into this further.
 

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No SunNSnow it isn't too good to be true. MANY folks have found that Calium can help firm up their D.Have you had a chance to read (just the 1st page, mind you ) of the "Linda's Calcium" thread thumbtacked above us here? It has helped so many people.Hope the same for you.G gal SO happy to hear you are doing better with it.
 

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Yes, Kathleen directed me there. And after reading it I did a literaturereview on the topic and contacted twoGIs. No scentific studies on it (that doesnot mean its not real as medicine is indifferentto easy, cost effective solutions such as this.)Linda's case sounds like spontaneous remissionwhich happens for people with IBS, with orwithout a purported explanation. It andother stories like it are anecdotal. I'm totally open to the idea that calcium isa solution. I myself will go buy a 60 daysupply of the best calcium supplement outthere this week. Because the treatmentis so simple, does not cause harm (excess calciumin men may be linked to cancer of the prostate butthis is in doses above 2,000 mg), and is so inexpensive, there is no reason why everyonewho has IBS-D not to try this as soon as possible.I suspect because of Linda's story, many haveindeed tried it but few (relative to number whohave tried it) have had success with it.Scurvy killed so many people around the worldand the solution was to have a few drops of lemonor lime juice. The medical community ignored JohnLind's solution to this problem for over 100 years.They thought such a powerful and complex disease couldnever have such an easy cure. Even if it helps just 10%, or even 5% of all those who suffer from IBS-D, this is a miracle.The entities that should be researching thisare foundations, calcium supplement makers,etc.
 

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SunNSsnow,If you have ever had a dog who chewed bones on a regular basis I think you would see something of the same effect as Linda reports. Calcium without magnesium is generally a constipator, just like Questran or some anti-ds, without the side effects of the meds. The less absorbed it is, as the unchelated Caltrate, the more likely it is to pass through the colon, rather than actually getting to the bones. It is one example of the less absorbed the better.Mark
 

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Iron supplements, like calcium supplements do have a reputation as having constipation as a side effect.Generally the problem with iron is the toxic dose is a lot closer to the needed dose and a lot of people need to avoid excess iron even generally healthy people. One reason for there being different multivitamins for men and women in their fertile years is the amount of iron a woman needs when menstruating can be more than is healthy for men.That being said, occasionally people say they help for IBS-D. If memory serves we usually get more posts from constipated anemic people that need to take the higher doses of iron for awhile and need to figure out what to take with it so they can go.Unfortunately not every supplement is tested for every thing it might be good for. Often the supplement manufactures don't see a need to pay the big bucks for testing and verifying that calcium supplements can be constipating isn't a big scientific interest even if that side effect might be useful for some people. Sure sometimes they'll do a "everyone knows that" verification study but usually only when there is a reason for it. (as sometimes things everyone knows are really myths that were never investigated in the first place and sometimes people twig into the truth that "it ain't necessarily so"
)Anyway. Supplements that are generally considered to be constipating tend to help people with IBS-D just like supplements that are generally considered to cause loose stools (magnesium and vitamin C) sometimes help people with IBS-C. At least on a regular enough basis from anecdotal evidence from several years and dozens if not hundreds of people reporting the same thing that they may be reasonable things to try. After all a fair number of IBSers on the D end of things end up having to avoid dairy and that makes it hard to get enough calcium in the diet and they may need supplements anyway.It would be loverly to have large, well controlled studies on every last thing IBSers have to try. Even things from the doctor by prescription don't always have that as most of the things for IBS are off-label and all you have is a few small studies indicating it might be helpful.If you need scientific certainty you have very few options available to you.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Of course you can't really know for sure but I really don't think this is a placebo effect type of thing cause like I've said, the doctors have had me on everything out there and nothing helped me. But I've been trying to find a solution for so long and I was beginning to think my case was hopeless, but something as simple as calcium seems to be doing it for me. I mean, I'm still not really what you would consider completely normal when it comes to that, but I'm a world better than what I was and I'm no longer having to be embarrassed and tied down because of my D. So, I just wanted to make sure no matter how hopeless you think you're case is, just give it a try. It can't hurt anything
Thanks guys for the support, wish you all luck!
 

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No, I don't need scientific conclusion for a harmless treatment. For something like CAT scans I would butnot for an inexpensive, harmless treatment likecalcium.It would not need large epidemiological study. You coulddo it with less than 100 people and conduct a double blindrandomized controlled crossover study. Linda and otherpeople are reporting that the effects were immediate.If the effects took longer than this type of study wouldno be feasible. One thing I wonder is where is Linda?How do we know she is not now having daily diarrhea?Even individuals with Crohn's can go into complete remissionwith no meds for 10 years but then one day it's all back.If it does work, it appears to help only a small percentage ofIBSers. If it helped a huge percentage, this would havealready been tested in a study. And if it helped a lot of people,the IBS-D board would be mostly success stories.Got some calcium this morning, took 1,000 mg. Will take itfor 60 days.
 

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Linda has been posting regularly for years and it still was working for her. I've known her to be saying it works for more than a decade.Looks like she was here just a couple of days ago still helping people to see if it will work for them.No one is going to pay to fund a study to prove Calcium has a constipating side effect. Everyone believes it does. From whatever studies done on Calcium they always find it does. I don't know why all the other studies for all the other uses that all find it has a constipating side effect makes it worth doing a specific study to see if it has that specific side effect.Of all the anecdotal evidence things we have around here, it has the best track record and I wouldn't recommend it if it were one isolated person and there was no reason to believe it is constipating.http://www.drugs.com/cdi/calcium-carbonate.html lists constipation as a side effect.Harvard's health letter seems to believe it can be constipating.http://www.health.harvard.edu/newsweek/Wha...out_calcium.htmHere is more info about men might want to stick to a bit lower dose than woman.http://www.cancer.org/docroot/NWS/content/...tate_Cancer.asp But the type of study done isn't really enough for proof, and hard to know what other factors go with men who eat more dairy.
 

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Could this be psychosomatic? Placebo effect.
Then how come none of the other medications helped? The conclusion of placebo effect, especiallyin this individual's case (she took multiple other medications and none of them helped), simply doesn'tmake sense.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
My d is actually gone and I'm just grateful for that, but it does make me kind of mad that it was something so simple and the doctors never realized it or anything. I honestly look for the calcium to stop working eventually, just because every medicine I've ever tried has never worked. I'm just gonna keep taking it and see what happens, but it's been over a month now and it still seems to be working. If iron has the same effect as calcium, I wouldn't want to take them together. The calcium's doing a fine job on it's own.
 

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I've been on calcium for 4 months now, and it has helped me so much. As Linda says, it's not a cure, and I still have problems at stressful times, but as long as I take my calcium and, very occasionally when I have to go out for any length of time, a small amount of immodium, I'm ok.It's not a placebo, it's the only thing that has worked for me.
 
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