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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm 18 years old and was diagnosed with IBS - D about 11 months ago, and struggle with it constantly. I've noticed that ever since my IBS symptoms began, my periods have become a lot worse (longer, heavier, more cramping, etc). Also, my IBS gets worse around my period, especially the week before. I mentioned this to my doctor, and she said the hormones from my bad periods could be causing my IBS to flare up more. I'm going on the pill to help my periods at the end of May, and I saw some people on this website saying the pill has negatively affected their IBS. Has anyone else dealt with this? I will be sooo upset if the pill worsens my IBS it is already a pain! Also, has anyone else noticed their periods getting worse possibly due to IBS?
 

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Welcome. I've had my period since I was eleven and was diagnosed with IBS when I was nineteen. My periods gradually became worse and worse throughout high school. After my IBS symptoms started, I noticed that things got worse during my periods. Now, my IBS started after I was placed on birth control (yasmin), however, I feel that remaining on birth control is one of the things that kept it under control. When I stopped responding to antispasmodics, my GI placed me on paxil. I then went to my GYN because I was concerned with my increased symptoms around my periods and he thought I might have endometriosis. I didn't want surgery to diagnose, so I went on depo provera injections instead. This plus paxil and bentyl took my symptoms away. Eventually I started having some non-GI side effects on the depo (plus I was concerned with the delayed return in fertility and the warnings regarding bone density loss) so I switched over to seasonale. I was on either seasonale or seasonique for about three years. Last year I switched to a progesterone only pill and have done fairly well with it. The seasonale and seasonique were taken continuously at first, then I did start making myself have periods every three months. The pills I'm on now are just taken continuously.
 

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Hi. I've also experienced a worsening of my IBS-D symptoms during my period, plus long painful periods like you described. When I was 21 I was diagnosed with endometriosis, but I wasn't diagnosed with the IBS until I was 25. My doctor told me that IBS is more common in women with endometriosis. For a long time my doctors thought all my problems were gynecological. I tried several different types of pills, but all of them made the IBS worse or caused other side effects. Finally, my doctor put me on the birth control patch. It has been great. It does the best job of controlling the period symptoms and my IBS flares happen less often. My doctor said it is because the hormone dose is constant rather fluctuating like with some pills. I have had some friends take Depo injections for this reason, but they've had different problems including depression, anxiety, weight gain, etc. One of my friends had a bunch of dental problems caused by bone weakening in her jaw from Depo so I wasn't willing to risk taking the shot, but the patch has worked pretty well for me.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks so much for the responses - very helpful! I was glad to hear both of your IBS symptoms have gone down & same with period problems. I didn't know that women with endometritis often have IBS as well. I'm going to the GYN in 2 weeks, so I guess I will find out about all this then, but thanks for the suggestions because I will definitely ask her about all my options for birth control. I assumed the pill, because I need it to help with cramps, etc, as well as for birth control, but the patch sounds good too. Thanks again!I do have a question, does your endometritis make your IBS even worse? And also, I'm not very familiar with it, does it affect your chances of having children?
 

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The only way to know for sure if you have endometriosis is to have a laparoscopy (which is a minor surgical procedure). With endometriosis, endometrial tissues grows outside the uterus which can cause adhesions can form. It can also cause heavy, painful periods and other problems. I don't know if it makes IBS worse per say, but it has a lot of the same symptoms. This was my problem, for a long time I didn't know I had both so I didn't really know if the treatment was working, because it was only treating one thing. Endometriosis is also associated with problems with infertility. That said, I had a laparoscopic procedure to remove adhesions and within two months became pregnant with my son. I hope you find something that helps with your symptoms. Good luck!
 
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