Stomach cramps - IBS?

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smile
smile Member Posts: 13
edited 24. Dec 2010, 13:45 in Living with Arthritis archive
Hi there,

Ive not been diagnosed with anything yet, have just had some blood tests taken. Infact in the all the time Ive had blood tests this is the first one that has really hurt. It wasnt the actual blood test it was when they applied pressure at the end.

My question is with arthritis can you suffer with stomach problems. Since Ive felt unwell these past few weeks, on a daily basis Ive been getting stomach cramps, sometimes needing the toilet sometimes not. However yesterday was so bad that I was on the toilet for about 15mins. I then ate later and the same happened but not as bad. I had dinner later and nothing happened. Ive taken to taking something called Buscupan (or something like that) it used for cramps in IBS.

Does anyone have similar problems and is there anything that helps. For over a year I had stomach problems and feeling sick. A dietician found that gluten didnt agree with me, so Ive been without that for about 3 months and lactose free for about over a month, which for about 90% of the time has helped the feeling sick and needing the toilet. With the change of diet most of the time I would only need the toilet once/twice a day compared to seven/eight times.

I dont know what to do anymore and Im just so tired and hurting/aching. All I can do is sit and wait for the blood tests to come back, which will take longer because of christmas/new year. I was told to come back in january. My problem is I cant take time off work, this is our busiest time of year and we dont get paid for first 3 days off.

Thanks

Comments

  • tillytop
    tillytop Member Posts: 3,460
    edited 21. Dec 2010, 04:03
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    Morning Smile!

    I have just replied to your message on "say hello" forum so I won't duplicate here but just wanted to say, again, how sorry I am that you are struggling so much at the moment with everything.

    I really do understand from experience how it feels to be so unwell with a number of apparently unrelated problems and not to know where to turn and how to go about getting to the bottom of what's going on.

    Did you mention the stomach problems to the GP when you saw him yesterday? If not, I really do think you would be wise to insist on another GP appt before Chrsitmas to see if he can suggest anything which will help. I know that, if the GP thinks you have IBS he can prescribe tablets to try to ease the problems. There are some inflammatory conditions which can cause digestive problems and I think these are usually diagnosed following proper investigation by a gastro-enterologist.

    I am so sorry it is also so difficult for you at work. I guess being signed off by the GP is not really an option for you if you are concerned about both work's attitude and not being paid. I wish I could think of something positive to suggest to you.

    Please do consider going back to the GP again this week about your stomach problems- even if you have to push hard for an "emergency" appt.

    Finally (then I'll stop rambling!) have you considered speaking to the AC helpline team (number at the top of the page). They are very good listeners and may have some helpful advice for you.

    Thinking of you.

    Love Tilly xxx
  • Colin1
    Colin1 Member Posts: 1,769
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Hello Smile, sorry to hear your suffering so much.
    I remember being told to retire from work by the Rheumy and me saying how am i going to live. Then being told if i did not retire they would withdraw my treatment. Its a bad feeling but what must be must be.
    Same thing as tilly really i take it you must have talked to the GP, Do you think you have arthritis do you have widespread pain
    IBS can offten be miss diagnosed however there is a thing called Fibromalgia that can cause IBS symptoms, Loook it up on the net.
    You take care
    Colin
    WHEN GOD GIVES YOU LEMONS MAKE LEMONADE
  • barbara12
    barbara12 Member Posts: 21,281
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Hi Smile
    And a very warm welcome from me,I do know there are quite a few people on here that have IBS, that seems to be linked to some arthurs,
    Hopefully they will be along very soon, is has been so quiet on here think they are all Christmas shopping x:)
    Love
    Barbara x
    Love
    Barbara
  • smile
    smile Member Posts: 13
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Thank you for all the replies and advice.

    I guess I can say a little bit more regarding the stomach issues.

    For over a year I had problems and saw a gastro person twice and had a barium test/x-ray and colonscopy with biopsy. I was told everything was normal even though at the time my weight was around 6st 11/12. I was told that I have always been slight and that I just have IBS. They were checking for crohns disease because my mum suffered with it bad in her 20's/30's.

    About 4 months ago I asked to be refered to a dietician and he believe that gluten was effecting me. Over the space of a year and 3 different blood tests showed I had the raised antibody IgA, however was told it didnt mean anything that I can eat gluten. Was also told I might have malabsorption, which I dont believe. It just seems no one seems bothered.

    My stomach issues had improved with the diet, yet my weight just remains between 6st 11 and 6st 13 rarely 7st.

    Go back to april time when I was feeling really unwell I couldnt do anything physical without my arms and legs feeling weak and tired. My iron was checked and was normal.

    At times I have been given IBS medication (last year) and it didnt really do much because at the time I didnt have stomach cramps, it was more feeling sick and toilet issues.

    I have heard of Fibromalgia, Ive a friend who suffers with it and to be honest this is the first thing that came to my mind.

    The pain/aches I had especially at night (last week) made my whole body ache below my neck, it made me so restless I couldnt relax. The bones in my toes/feet hurt. Even now in the inside my arms just above the elbow it hurts to touch. I have noticed that physical activity makes things worse. Like being at work is terrible.

    I dont feel I can book another doctors appointment, the one I saw yesterday just told me to go back in january to see the one I saw last week because he is looking at my notes to see what could be causing the tiredness and weight loss. Upto date all my blood tests have been normal apart from the IgA. That includes iron, full blood count, thyroid, glucose, calcium, liver, kidneys etc

    I feel in such a dilemma, Im having to push myself through work. When I woke this morning my arms/shoulders were hurting like I had been to the gym and had a hard sesion after years of not exercising.

    It feels like no one can actually help at the moment.
  • tjt6768
    tjt6768 Member Posts: 12,170
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Hi Smile, hope you're doing ok at the minute, welcome from me..
    I have both osteo and rheumy arthritis, also have been told I have IBS.... Certainly have all the 'symtoms' :shock: :roll:
    My Doc prescribed Mebeverine, they have been a real help for me.. I just have to avoid beef, and some other things, which is a shame cos you can't beat a good steak! Lol
    I know nothing about the fybro thing and wouldn't even think that it was stomach related, might have a google about it..

    Hope things get better for you

    e050.gifMe-Tony
    n035.gifRa-1996 -2013 RIP...
    k040.gif
    Cleo - 1996 to 2011. RIP
  • frogmorton
    frogmorton Member Posts: 29,506
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Hi Smile

    Not much fun ANY of that lot - poor you x:(

    Just incase you haven't thought of it - are you taking any anti-0iflamatories? Like ibuprofen or diclofenac?? Just that they can aggravate the belly something rotten. (you have probably already elimiated this as a possible trigger)

    I know what you mean about not feeling able to keep ON going to the docs especially when they have advised you to return in Jan....have you made that appt yet though? It feels better when you have a date fixed I think?

    Love

    Toni xx
  • smile
    smile Member Posts: 13
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    I was give an anti-inflammtory last week I think its meloxican (or something like that), I must admit I only took it a few times because I didnt know if it was that or the antibiotics causing stomach cramps. I have not taken the meloxican since last week. Ive been tempted to take it to see if it helps with the pain, but I dont want the stomach problems.

    The stomach cramps and needing the toilet have been ok today, but at the moment the problem is the tiredness/weakness and joint pain.

    I am actually going to try and book an appointment now for the new year, so I know Ive got it.

    Thank you everyone for your support it means so much.
  • woodbon
    woodbon Member Posts: 4,969
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Hello, Welcome to the forum, I hope you find us useful, I know that I've had so much help and support from the peeps here, don't know what I'd do without them! x:D

    Glad you have got an appointment with your GP, its a shame you have to wait until the New Year, but thats Christmas, I suppose.

    All the things that the others have said is very good advice and its hard for me to add to it. The only thing that I can think of is that my nephew, who is in his early 40's started having problems similar to you and he found that he is lactose intolerant. He can't tolerate any dairy produce at all, even in cakes and it came on after he had grown up, before that he loved milk and cheese and had a lot of dairy food. Could that be possible for you? Maybe if you think so you could cut it out for a little while and use soya substitute fro milk. Just a suggestion, which doesn't involve taking any extra pills, but, the wrong time of year to suggest it! x:( I hope you have a good Christmas and don't suffer too much.
    Love Sue x:wink:
  • smile
    smile Member Posts: 13
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Thank you for the advice about the lactose. I have actually been lactose free for almost 2 months (not sure on exact time). I basically have soya milk in cereal and tea, I dont eat anything that contains lactose.
  • frogmorton
    frogmorton Member Posts: 29,506
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Hi Smile

    l know I have stomach cramps and iffy trips to the loo on anti-inflams which WILL unfortunately help with the pain. I guess you might need to brave trying them again to be sure - and that is not a nice thought is it? :shock:

    I did this and then the doc gave me arcoxia which is a cox-2 inhibitor same thing but gentler on the belly - I have no idea about meloxicam though.

    The tiredness is the arthritis I am afraid - I was advised to 'give in' to it, but maybe set the alarm and have a proper hour or so in the day. You will still feel tired, but it IS better.

    Love

    Toni xx
  • smile
    smile Member Posts: 13
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    I think your right I should give it a go and try them again to see what will happen. Im trying to think of the best time to start them again and although I wouldnt like to I think christmas day/boxing day is the best. Because of my job and the hours its very hard to get to a toilet quickly. Atleast I know on those days I will be at home.

    I definately feel this problem is either arthritis or Fibromalgia. In no way do I feel this is an infection. Im just hoping the blood test results give an indicator of whats going on.
  • tillytop
    tillytop Member Posts: 3,460
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Hello again Smile

    I think Toni's suggestion of trying the anti-inflamms again to see what happens is a good one. I guess by then you will have finished the antibiotics as well so that won't cloud the picture.

    You are clearly feeling pretty desperate about it all at the moment, understandably and I do understand why you don't feel you can go back to the doc again at the moment.

    I know from my own experiences that it is so easy to feel swamped by it all but I wonder if, perhaps, rather than feeling you aren't getting anywhere, you can focus on the fact that you have got the blood tests underway and that, once you have booked your January appt, you have done everything you can to move this forward for the time being. Then, if you keep a note of all your symptoms, including what happens when you try the anti-inflamms again, you will be in the best possible position to move things forward again when you go back to the doc in Jan.

    In the meantime, if you think you may have Fibromyalgia, you could do some research so you could discuss it with the GP when you see him again. The "publications and resources" section of the AC website is a good source of reliable information and they may well have a leaflet on Fibromyalgia. You could also try the Arthritis Research Campaign website for information too.

    Thinking of you.

    Love Tilly xxx
  • lupin15
    lupin15 Member Posts: 2,182
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    frogmorton wrote:
    Hi Smile

    Not much fun ANY of that lot - poor you x:(

    Just incase you haven't thought of it - are you taking any anti-0iflamatories? Like ibuprofen or diclofenac?? Just that they can aggravate the belly something rotten. (you have probably already elimiated this as a possible trigger)

    I know what you mean about not feeling able to keep ON going to the docs especially when they have advised you to return in Jan....have you made that appt yet though? It feels better when you have a date fixed I think?

    Love

    Toni xx

    I am so sorry to hear that you are having such an awful time at the moment. Anti-0iflamatories? Like ibuprofen or diclofenac
    can cause awful stomach cramps and feeling sick. I cannot take anti inflam due to stomach pains...i am in the process of trying to find meds to help me with pain for my arthur. You really should ask to see another doctor and soon.
    Hope you feel better soon.
  • Colin1
    Colin1 Member Posts: 1,769
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Hello again Smile
    When you suffer long term it can play with your mind and at one time i was scared to leave the house incase i needed the toilet. The other problem you have is that your symptyms could be several different things, I know thats not good for you and you must feel like you may have been miss diagnosed i know thats how i felt. Now that you say about the pain and tiredness it makes me think about the Arthritis. However Fobro
    Does the same thing and has the same symptoms.
    Have a look at this site
    http://www.fibromyalgiaassociationuk.org/phpBB3/viewforum.php?f=5


    Take Care and let me know what you think of the site. Dont think your alone the people here are so nice and allways woilling tpo talk.
    Colin
    WHEN GOD GIVES YOU LEMONS MAKE LEMONADE
  • smile
    smile Member Posts: 13
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Thanks for the post colin. Ive had a look at both sites on fibro and arthritis and I cant seem to see muc difference. I guess a lot of things are similar eg pain and tiredness. the one thing I dont know, but might be different is that I have paint to touch certain places in my body not just joints eg yesterday after work both my thighs hurt to touch, they felt bruised, the same happens with my upper arms/lower arms and near my elbows. Would that be more fibro or arthritis?

    I think my main concern is to not burn myself out physically before I can get my blood test results back. It looks like I wont be able to see the same doctor until the week starting the 10th. Which just feels too far off.
  • Colin1
    Colin1 Member Posts: 1,769
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    I think it would do no harm to talk to the GP Perhaps get some respite over Christmas Medication for depression does work on Fibro and it does relieve the pain, only problem is it can leave you spaced out for part of the day. I take mine when i'm going to bed and i'm normally fine by mid day. It made feel like a new person. I'm not saying it will work for you i dont know what you have but sounds simular to me.
    Take care Colin
    WHEN GOD GIVES YOU LEMONS MAKE LEMONADE
  • tjc123
    tjc123 Member Posts: 139
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    x:rudolf
    Hi Smile
    I have read through your post & I cant believe it...I am seeing my GP for exactly the same thing.Reading your post was like listening to myself. :lol:
    Its awful this whole stomach ,toilet issue but when I went to the docs he didnt seem that bothered.I was diagnosed with IBS about 10 years ago but this just seems to be something more.I have had to put two "samples" in & tomorrow I have to go for blood taking.Im not sure when I will get the results.
    I feel so shattered & in a lot of pain all over my body & I am scared to go too far from the loo.

    I hope you get sorted soon
    Take Care & try to enjoy Christmas
    tjc
  • skezier
    skezier Member Posts: 11,333
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Hi Smile,

    I do fee for you and have a fair few digestive problems so kinda understand.

    I guess you have seem a gastro? Wondered what they made of it? I get acute tiredness when the crohn's or the bones are active ad just wondered if they have suggested either the ordinary cameras or the capsule ones at all? Might help find out whats going on.

    I agree its like being in a swamp with everything kicking at the same time but maybe the bloods will help to find out whats going on there.

    It might help to go to the N.A.C.C. site cus they do mention IBS and there are a whole load of foods that upset IBD that are also able to upset IBS.

    I really hope they will soon find out whats going on and really start to help you. It might also be an idea to contact the AC or NACC helplines, both are very good and kind. Nice to meet you. Cris x
  • smile
    smile Member Posts: 13
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    thank you for the replies, sorry im only just replying. At the moment Im just focusing on getting my blood test results near the end of next week.

    I still have no idea about what is going on.

    The pain and aching has reduced a bit, now its there more when I do anything physical. At work the other day I was standing for quite a few hours and walking around a bit, however after a bit my back was aching/hurting as was the balls of my feet, my hips, my thighs and my shoulders. I also still feel tired, just not as much as last week.

    I read somewhere that with RA, you can suffer with muscle wasting. Over the last year Ive noticed that the muscle around me knees are not like they were, if you were to look at them face on it looks like a chunk has been taken out of them eg if this was my right leg it would look like this ( at the knee and the left leg would look like this ) just not as curved at that. The muscle from above the knee has also wasted away. I exercised greatly for many years and always had well shaped legs. I dont know if this means anything, but I always wondered why my knees now looked like that.

    I also noticed that with RA you can get a fever. Last week when I felt really bad I had a temperture two times. Everywhere, well my arms, thighs, chest, back and stomach were burning.

    At the moment the one things that hurts/aches the most is my elbows/arms. If I brush my hair just bending my arms/elbows hurt it.

    I hope you are all well. Take care
  • dreamdaisy
    dreamdaisy Member Posts: 31,520
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Morning smile, I hope things are not too bad today. I was re-reading your thread and wondered if you knew that anti-inflammatories have to be taken for a while before they begin to help, just the odd one or two won't make much difference. I am very lucky in that I don't have any stomach/bowel issues (no doubt they will crop up in time but I don't mind waiting!) The early days and waiting to find out what is going on is a difficult time, but if you can put it all to one side and enjoy the festive season. Sitting worrying about it all won't make the results come any faster - keep ahead of the pain as much as you can with pain dullers and try to relax a little more - this extra tension you are placing on yourself won't help you - tho it is understandable. I wish you well. DD
    Have you got the despatches? No, I always walk like this. Eddie Braben
  • tillytop
    tillytop Member Posts: 3,460
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Hello Smile

    I am glad to read that the pains have decreased a bit.

    Just wanted to say that I hope you are ok and that I am thinking of you.

    Lots love Tilly xxx x:rudolf