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Suffering since November with stomach issues/pain....

(17 Posts)
mawinter Wed 19-Feb-14 19:59:15

I apologise as this is going to be long...

I went off the Pill (Cerazette) back in September of last year. I had severe bloat for several weeks while waiting for my period to finally arrive. I had many tests during the wait and was found to have my hormones totally unbalanced. My doctor gave me Matsodynon in the hopes of bringing on my Period. Finally on October 31st, I had my first AF after coming off the pill. The Doctor discovered after further blood work I failed to Ovulate and referred me to a clinic, on top of this she told me my Thyroid levels were slightly above 2 and for pregnancy they liked them under 2, so she put me on L-Thyroxine.
Towards the end of November shortly after being put on Thyroxine I started to bloat very badly after anything I ate. I also developed nasty diarrhea. Since I have a history of intestinal infections I mentioned to my GP I thought i had another infection. He dismissed it saying there is no sign of infection in my bloodwork. I told him I suspected my acid reflux medication was also no longer working as I was having heartburn and a sour taste in my mouth.
I was back to my GP not even a week later as I was developing intense pain in the upper portion of my stomach with anything I ate. I also at times felt tightening on and off in my stomach near my belly button. The heartburn was so severe at times, I felt as if I was having a heart attack.
I also have a history of GERD, I am on Esomeprazole since 3 years.
I have been back and forth to my GP now for several weeks, sometimes at least twice a week because I am in such bad pain.
So far I have been sent for a stomach scope (this came back clear except for some small red patch of bacteria) and an abdominal CT, this has also come back clear.
I have since come off Mastodynon, L-Thyroxine and Bromocriptine (this last one was added in Jan due to high prolactin), as these are all known to be triggers of stomach issues. Since coming off all meds my acid reflux seems to be under control. However I still have this really bad pain. It is like a brick has been wedged in to the center of my chest.
I am tired all of the time, at maximum I can go a few days without pain sometimes, but it always comes back. I have trouble breathing, at times I have tightness in my chest and just yesterday I started to develop sharp pains while breathing. My GP has dismissed this as Bronchitis, but it for sure does not feel like any Bronchitis I have ever had.

RockinD Wed 19-Feb-14 20:05:37

Under active thyroid and high prolactin? Chances are everything was related and it might take a referral to a knowledgeable endocrinologist to sort this out.

With the GERD and PPIs, you need to be careful that you actually have HIGH stomach acid if you are going to take the tablets. The symptoms of high and low stomach acid are pretty much the same, and if you have LOW stomach acid as many hypothyroid people do, taking PPIs can make things worse instead of better.

mawinter Wed 19-Feb-14 20:41:15

The problem with the Thyroid, is that my Thyroid is not under active. All levels were within normal range, my GP could not understand (bar wanting to get pregnant) why I was even put on the medication in the first place, as they were nothing that could not be managed with a change in diet. When my GYN put me on the medicine back in November my levels were:

TSH 2.58
FT3 3.85
FT4 1.29

My Prolactin levels have since returned to normal after taking the Bromocriptine for the recommended 30 days via the Infertility Clinic.
Without the Esomeprazole I always got horrible reflux symptoms, so they said I should be on it for an extended period of time.
I have been referred to a Gasto specialist by my GP for further testing to see if I have any Gluten allergies or other food allergies. I planned to ask him about the Esomeprazole usage, as I am also starting to suspect it may be doing more harm than good.

mawinter Wed 19-Feb-14 20:59:10

I forgot to add something to this. Maybe it is of no importance maybe it is.

I have also been waking up in the morning with intense heavy pain/pressure in my chest and upper back. After moving around a bit, the pain in my back and chest goes away. This started happening in January.

Megbeth Fri 21-Feb-14 12:46:58

Could it be hiatus hernia? I know it can cause pain lying down at night & reflux problems.

mawinter Sat 22-Feb-14 08:25:13

Megbeth They told me no Hernia was found during the stomach scope or CT.

I am beginning to wonder if this is actually a side effect of coming off Birth Control, but then why would it cause symptoms even months later? My periods are back to normal mostly, just have lots of stomach issues.

I am noticing i am even getting Bloated from drinking a single Glass of water. :/

LovelyBath Sat 22-Feb-14 10:24:12

Have you had any previous surgery? I am just asking because the bloating and pain is similar to what I've had from adhesions.

mawinter Sat 22-Feb-14 11:20:17

lovelybath Yes! I have abdominal adhesions from having my appendix removed. This is partly why I remained on Birth Control for so long. Without them I had really painful periods from the adhesions. My doctor said it was similar to what Endo patients tell her. I came off the BC because I badly wanted to get pregnant again (though they now tell us after investigations we will need ICSI).

moggiek Sat 22-Feb-14 22:38:35

mawinter - it sounds very much like pancreatic pain. Get back to the GP, and make a fuss until you get an upper abdo scan.

LovelyBath Sun 23-Feb-14 18:13:28

OK that's interesting about the birth control as I get issues with the adhesions around my period too. I've been told there's not a lot they can do about the adhesions unfortunately as more surgery makes more of them. I was advised if the bloating and pain starts to 'rest the bowel' so avoiding eating for up to 6 hours to allow it to settle down. Also it may help to avoid fibre (google 'diet for partial bowel obstruction')... Maybe best to get tests to rule out other things too as moggiek suggests. Hope you get some answers soon.

if you get bad crampy pain along with vomiting and not being able to go to the toilet, go to A & E asap as you may have an obstruction. It is important to do this as you can get dehydrated quickly. Hopefully this won't happen though.

mawinter Mon 24-Feb-14 07:13:34

lovelybath Like you, they also told me there is not much they can do to make the adhesions go away. They tried once, but they only came back twice as bad. One thing I found really helpful along with the BC was injections of Procaine around the abdomen (of course I went for these originally for my prolapsed disc) along the site of the incisions in to the nerves. At first I went for these twice a week, but over time it got down to one every year and it's been two years now since I had my last injection. Prior to these injections and the BC (Cerazette) I could barely move or eat at times.

Today I will actually be visiting my Asthma doctor and I am going to demand he do an X-Ray of my chest, as I am having a lot of pain there. I was told by my GP I have Bronchitis, but I am not buying it as it feels nothing like Bronchitis. I suspect all of the upper abdominal bloat and acid reflux caused some damage to my lungs or ribs.
Weds I will meet with my GYN to discuss with her about going back on BC until the ICSI in Summer. I also want to mention to her I still have some pain in my left breast since coming off the Pill.
On the 11th, I will meet with a Gastro specialist to test for food allergies.
I just hope I get some answers soon as this is really driving me nuts!

mawinter Tue 25-Feb-14 11:38:25

To Give an update:

Yesterday while at the Lung Doctor he informed me nothing was wrong with me chest wise (after an x-ray), minus a touch of Bronchitis and my Winter Asthma. He did however note there was either an infection or cyst in my left breast, so afterwards I actually booked an appointment at the Fertility Clinic for today instead of visiting my normal GYN, as I decided i did not want to mess with any of their treatment plans in Summer.
It was good I went because they actually feel all my issues are hormone related along with my adhesions and have booked me for surgery to remove any adhesions around my reproductive organs through a clinic specialised in removing them. It also gives them a chance to see why my left tube is blocked in the process.
The magical infection or cyst the Lung Doctor felt I had is actually just normal hormonal changes with the breast, due to O soon, or rather was as I am now back on the pill.

lovelybath I found this article for you which discusses Birth Control as a treatment option for Adhesions - https://www.asrm.org/Managing_Pelvic_Pain_factsheet/ there is also this one, but it is more to do with endometriosis (however they are both pretty much the same when dealing with reproductive organs) http://www.stirrup-queens.com/2006/07/diagnosis-endometriosis/

LovelyBath Tue 25-Feb-14 13:27:29

Thanks that's interesting. Glad they seem to be on the right lines with working with you and that they are going to try and deal with the adhesions. Did you say they had removed them already or tried something? Do you think, maybe they will use an adhesion barrier with the surgery? My (colorectal) surgeons seemed a bit sceptical about the use of such things but I think from the reading I did, they use them more in gynae surgery. Hopefully it will work and help with the pregnancy.

I did read one lady who had adhesions from a bowel op had an improvement during her pregnancy, possibly sue to stretching, so that's positive (sometimes it seems most stuff about adhesions is negative so good to hear a positive!)

LovelyBath Tue 25-Feb-14 16:12:53

I also had problems with ovulation / periods before my last op where they removed all the adhesions. I had cysts forming on the left ovary which was where the pain was. i think it was to do with adhesions and they mentioned something about 'trapped ovary syndrome'. I think it is where you ovulate but the egg can't get to the fallopian tubes due to scar tissue, then you don't get your period. It might explain why the pill helped, as would have stopped the ovulation.

mawinter Tue 25-Feb-14 18:13:59

Yes, they tried to remove them previously in 2006. However within two weeks I suffered an infection and the adhesions returned. This time I have instructed them antibiotics are a must along with the surgery or I will not go through with it and they have made a note of it on my referral.
I am not fully sure how they will do the procedure yet as I still need to meet with them to discuss when they will actually go through with the surgery.

LovelyBath Wed 26-Feb-14 12:44:06

That's a good idea, yes I've done some reading and infections are a cause of adhesions. I too had an infection on recovery from my first op which was when I got bad adhesions. I had antibiotics but only for a couple of days IV then in a tablet and I don't think it was enough. Hopefully it won't happen though this time.

I think, over time we get more experienced with these things and you're right, it's definitely good to ask questions and advise them of things based on your past history (however you would think they'd do that themselves but they don't always do they!) there's so much written on adhesions but I've found most of the doctors even the surgeons seem so vague on them and how they're caused..

I had a major bowel resection over a year ago and the surgeons told me I had dense adhesions but they were all taken down. The op took over 6 hours and was open surgery which is not supposed to be good for adhesions. However I made a good recovery (and had a week of IV antibiotics) with no infection and have been much better since.

mawinter Tue 04-Mar-14 20:39:00

Finally I have a diagnosis (and I figured it out on my own). It's Xiphoid Syndrome! I've been referred to an Orthopedist for a cure. smile

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