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Pain in left hand side, constipation, and now anaemia...any ideas?

(9 Posts)
saresywaresy2 Fri 23-Jan-15 19:34:14

I know I should be patient and wait for results and let the diagnosis take its course but just wondering if anyone had any thoughts on what's going on with me?

In June 2014 my husband was diagnosed with hodgkins lymphoma. It was around this time that I developed constipation and a pain in my lower left abdomen. The pain is there most of the time, even in the night, it eases if I move my bowels but then comes back on. My bowels are bad, i feel pressure and that i need to go, but i can't. Some days are better than others and i'm making huge efforts dietary wise but haven't taken any laxatives for it yet. The constipation and pain is none existant when I'm on my period.

I had been thinking that it was irritable bowel brought on by the stress of j being ill, because i had these symptoms over a year before when during a very stressful time at work. That time it only lasted a fortnight. This time it's 8 months and still going.

J is in remission now so stress levels are nowhere near as bad as they were in November when it was at its worst, but i'm no better. I went to the doctors in December. He was thinking ovary related due to it being better when i'm on my period. So he has referred me for an ultrasound. The appointment has taken ages to come through and isn't until next week. Meanwhile he did a blood test and found that I'm anaemic. He wants me to take iron tablets but i just can't face it because of the constipation i had with them when i was pregnant, so i'm taking floradix some days and feroglobin others but i'm now feeling very tired and foggy and struggling to think clearly. The doctor got me to do a stool sample to see if there was any inflammation in the bowel but all was normal. He said he doesn't think it is bowel cancer becase of my age (41) and the fact that it is usually diahorrea as a symptom. He said he'd be agreeing with my on the ibs front if it werent for the anaemia. The next plan is to wait till ulstrasound results and then discuss the possibility of an endoscope.

I'm worried because J has booked us a holiday on 10th Feb to celebrate his remission but i feel worse every day.

I guess what i'm asking is has anyone had anything similar and any ideas of causes?

And also how should i manage the anaemia/constipation? I feel so foggy I can't think straight. Should i take fybogel to help with constipation? Should i take the proper iron tablets? How best to balance the two? Any advice gratefully received? I just wabnt to celebrate J being better and not have all these worries :-(

youngatheart1 Sat 24-Jan-15 07:17:53

Had the same last year told it was IBS pushed for tests as have been told this excuse for years, turned out to be diverticulitis, had colonoscopy to confirm. Fybogel before bed and buscopan which you can get from anywhere, try this and get the test. Found all food related, I was trying to eat healthily nuts, fruits etc worse thing as I now know sweetcorn, fresh tomatoes, seed and peanuts are hell. Give the buscopan a try. The iron will make you constipated so fybogel is great. Good luck

saresywaresy2 Sat 24-Jan-15 09:08:19

thanks for this, i'll try some buscopan and fybogel and start taking his strong iron tablets. i dont think my periods are particularly heavy so it is a worry as to what is causing the anaemia.
my mum has diverticular disease so i wouldnt be at all suprised if i turn out to have it too. i just wish it was all in my head and it would go away :-)

MatildaTheCat Sat 24-Jan-15 12:08:08

If your stools are very hard I recommend lactulose. It's very gentle and softens the stools making it easier to pass. Do you know what level your haemoglobin was? Although you mention iron tablets have you had a look at your diet to be sure you are eating enough iron? Finally, Spatone is fabulous for anaemia and has no constipating effects at all.

saresywaresy2 Sat 24-Jan-15 16:01:52

Thanks matilda, I think he said my iron was 115 which i think is 11.5. I don't think that is massively low but I do feel worse since he has told me. I've been tired for a while but i seem more wobbly now. Psychological maybe, but when i pull down my eye the inner bit is completely white. I'm thinking about just doing what I'm told and taking the tablets rather than supplements. Had a steak for tea last night and am eating dried apricots now. I'll give the lactulose a try too.

MatildaTheCat Sat 24-Jan-15 22:07:14

11.5 is well within normal range. It's possible your reserves are lowish but I wouldn't be too worried and personally I would focus on dietary means rather than medical ways of improving this. In respect of your constipation please don't be hesitant in taking a gentle laxative such as lactulose. These aids get a bad press quite unnecessarily IMO. Constipation is horrid and often very easily treated.

MrsPinotGrigio Sat 24-Jan-15 22:43:19

For the constipation ask your GP for Movicol - it works by increasing fluids in the stools so is gentle on the bowel.

MrsPinotGrigio Sat 24-Jan-15 22:46:11

I was told I had IBS for years but after a horrendous 6 months I was diagnosed with Crohns 3 years ago. I was very severely anaemic which is caused by bleeding in the bowel common in IBD. I don't want to worry you but I think you do need to get it checked out by a Gastro.

saresywaresy2 Sun 25-Jan-15 11:19:19

Thanks all. I think he said the stool sample was to rule out crohns and celeac disorders, but i might be wrong and he does seem keen on doing the endoscopy if the ultrasound is clear so i'll just go along with it.
I'm very confused about it. My pain is dull and constant, it doesn't seem like the descriptions of cramping in ibs and no bleeding in stool and sample clear. Wondering what the ultrasound will throw up. I keep wondering if maybe a blockage somewhere from scar tissue maybe from c-sections. I haven't got a clue, but i definitely need loosening up in the bowels so will try softeners. Thanks all.

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