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Prior to being infected with Giardia duodenalis I never had any significant gut problems in my entire life, nor any food sensitivities (except possibly thai red chilies). I am almost 70 years old. My "adventure" began shortly before Christmas in 2014 when I became suddenly, violently ill with first shock, vomiting and cramps, and then explosive diarrhea that lasted several days (with cramping). We thought it was food poisoning but when it didn't get better after 5 days, I sought medical help. The first doctor did nothing, my own doctor waited until almost a month had elapsed before testing my stool for all kinds of ailments. The Giardia was diagnosed after I'd been sick for more than a month. During that time I had continuous cramps, frothy light colored diarrhea, and anorexia. I lost 15 lb.

I was first given Flagyl (metronizadole) to kill the Giardia, which made me even sicker. I had a horrible greasy pain in my duodenum (I think it was the duodenum), and went into Urgent Care on a Sunday. The doctor there threw away the Flagyl and prescribed tinizadole (the FDA approved drug for Giardia). This is taken in one big dose. I tolerated it, started to feel better, then 4 days later my entire gut turned itself inside out as I believe all the dead Giardia (and my gut lining) were eliminated. Two weeks later I tested negative for Giardia. However, that was just the start of my IBS nightmare.

I believe the combination of the long bout with the parasite and the strong and toxic antibiotics permanently damaged my intestines. They have not worked properly ever since. I took a 2-month course of Florastor to help repair the gut from long and intense diarrhea. I think it did help. However, I have suffered ever since with the following symptoms: (1) erratic bowel movements -- sometimes only one or two in a day, sometimes 10 or 12; used to empty the gut in one or two big dumps, now each time I go it is usually only one or two stools at a time. (2) hard stools -- harder than normal (3) excessive intestinal gas and flatulence -- especially in the middle of the night (4) abdominal pain -- usually a dull ache just above the navel in the middle (5) unproductive urges to go, leading to straining (6) minor rectal prolapse (from straining) (7) anal leakage of mucus (from the prolapse) (8) occasional incontinence (9) anxiety (10) loss of appetite (11) more weight loss from not eating enough. (I needed to lose weight, and am now at a very good weight but not a friendly way to lose it). No diarrhea and not really constipation just not normal elimination.

I've tried probiotics (Align, yogurt, kefir), oat bran, which made the gas much worse, Miralax (gave me sharp gas pains), high-potency magnesium (as a laxative) -- gave me diarrhea. All of these discontinued immediately. My gut is just too sensitive.

I take lorazepam (from my regular MD) for the anxiety, a drug sold widely (but not in the U.S.) Colofac (mebeverine hydrochloride) for pain and gas. I have not changed my diet but in the last few days have eliminated coffee, wheat and dairy as a "detox". I am not prepared to give these up long-term. I have done a lot of reading about IBS treatments (i.e. drugs) and feel that they all would be too strong for me, or are inappropriate (i.e. I don't have diarrhea and don't really have constipation either). I do not want to see a regular GI doctor as all they want to do is give you a colonoscopy and then prescribe heavy-duty drugs -- neither of which I want. I am looking for someone who is an expert on my precise condition: post-Giardia infectious IBS. I have not found this person, which is why I have joined this forum. Any help with finding this expertise would be much appreciated. Thanking you all in advance!
 

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Any updates on your experience? I believe I am similar to you...my stool smaller came back negative, but know I picked up some sort of parasite/virus/bacteria on vacation 3 months ago. While better, bowels have not returned to normal.
 

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Any update on either of your experiences? Mine sounds similar as well. I'm coming up on one month of being sick after picking up some kind of bacteria or virus during a trip to South America. I tested negative for giardia, but I'm still waiting on the results of a few more stool samples. If everything is clear, the GI will be convinced it's post infectious IBS. Wondering if you're (hopefully) back to normal and how long it took?
 

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I'm an American living in Bahia, Brazil, and have had several bouts with giardia. I'm now trying to recover from this last one, which is by far the worst. I started treatment with 5 days of Mebendazole, which is said to have a high cure rate for giardia, but also treats other intestinal parasites like pinworms. Did fine for a week after treatment, drank one beer on a Saturday, and all came back with a vengeance. Took 2g single dose Tinidazole with a follow up 2g 8 days later. I still did not feel better on the 8th day and the doc put me on Bactrim.

Now a week later, the classic symptoms of Giardia are gone, replaced with all the symptoms of IBS or IBD. Low grade pain that keeps moving around the entire abdomen, gas, mild nausea. I started taking a lactobacillus suppliment 4 days ago which hasn't helped at all, but I suspect the quality of the product.

I found this thread and can totally relate. Wanted to share my experience in hopes of keeping this thread alive. Are any of the above posters any better? Is it possible these symptoms are a result of too many antibiotics?
 
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