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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
helloAfter various tests my (UK) doctor has said I have IBS. I had a terrible gastric upset a few years ago in the middle of Mongolia - where as you may know there are A) few public toilets and B) very little cover in the way of bushes. Since then I have been experiencing urgency in getting to the loo where the stool is soft but not watery. I have to go several times urgently (within five minutes) almost every morning but after lunch things are usually okay. I have been taking immodium - regularly (up to 4 capsules). I have never had constipation. Occasionally I have a day when I only go to the loo once and sometimes I don't go at all for a day - bliss! I cannot plan to do anything outside the house in the morning or until I've been several times at hourly intervals. I often get awful cramps in my stomach in the night but don't need the loo until the morning. Sometimes I wonder if it is cyclical in the way it gets worse and better. I have tried cutting out various foods but nothing makes any difference. I know I get anxious if I have to go out and I am sure the memory of Mongolia is influencing me. I have had a test to see if there is any bacteria still living in my gut but the tests were inconclusive. I wouldn't say I have diarrhoea (UK spelling!) and I certainly don't have constipation so have I got IBS? Is my doctor correct?
 

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Some people think anything less than completely watery stools every hour or less is not diarrhea.There is a spectrum.IBS-D is anything softer, looser or more frequent than normal. Urgency can occur with hard dry hard to pass stools but tends to be more of a problem for those on the softer than normal side of things. Although at least on the soft to loose side you tend to get it over quickly and the urgency starts to fade. For the can't pass the stool, but still have extreme urgency it can take awhile.Usually the D in IBS-D is 2-4 soft to loose stools a day. Usually if you get into the 5-20 loose to watery stools a day you are more likely to have something else, but some IBSers can be that severe.Anything other than your normal consistency and frequency counts for IBS. You do not need to be at the extremes to have IBS. IBS is usually closer to normal than most other GI illnesses, but the stools are distinctly different from before IBS started.It is not true that all IBSers are food triggered. Many of us are triggered by other things, from the act of eating (usually diarrhea right after a meal) to the menstrual cycle and any mental or physical stress like a bad nights sleep can set off IBS. Don't drive yourself nuts trying to find a diet if your symptoms seem to get worse or better regardless of which diet you are on.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks Kathleen for taking the time to respond. I found the frequency you mentioned (2-4 stools) quite interesting. This must mean that only a certain part of the gut is playing up. I just don't understand, with so many people suffering, why there isn't a cure or at least some sort of explanation about what's going on!
 

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The researchers have a pretty good handle on what is going on.That is why drugs developed for IBS target the nerves that control the gut.They've also found enough biomarkers for IBS (the nerve problems) and which biomarkers only show up in other diseases that in the USA they have a blood test that can rule IBS in or indicate you likely have some other disease.The problem is that most of the problem with IBS is like in the remote for the TV, but most medical tests look to see what is wrong inside the TV. If you send the gut the wrong signals at the wrong time or at the wrong intensity it can't do it's job smoothly.
 
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