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IBS....any advice appreciated!

(22 Posts)
Louella37 Tue 26-Jun-07 15:01:32

I am new to the site so hello!

Thought i would pick your brains for advice on my IBS, had it mildly for 3 years but it seems to have got worse in the last 6 months or so.

My Doctor seems to think my main problems are caused by irregular muscle spasms. Has anyone any experience with Mebeverine or Colpermin/Mintec which they can advise me with? The pain is sometimes unbearable and the bottom symptoms (sorry!) can be so inconvenient!

I should say i have already been diagnosed as wheat intolerant so i have cut this out, also i do not drink alcohol so these are not the causes (although they do make the IBS a lot worse!)

Thanks in advance!!

binkleandflip Tue 26-Jun-07 15:02:22

Colefac and Buscopan are very good for IBS.

ginandt Wed 27-Jun-07 11:27:23

hello Louella37. I'm a fellow IBS sufferer and sympathise. I use Colepermin and that seems to help. The others recommended by binkleandflip are also good. You'll need to find what works best for you but try not too rely too much on them as I've found that they are then less effective. Diet does play a part in aggravating symptoms, so when it flares up also try to avoid too much caffeine, chocolate and spicy foods. Try peppermint tea as well. Stress makes it much worse and it always returns with a vengeance when i get my AF (period). Thank goodness for teh painkillers then! Hope this helps.

DiscoFever Wed 27-Jun-07 11:47:49

yeah, am a colefac and buscopan user too and they are good. have cut out red meat and most dairy products which help me. also artificial sweetners are a known cause for diahrea in ibs sufferers my doctor told me, i found this out after confessing i am a diet coke addict i.e. upto 2 litres a day which i have had to cut right down to half a litre a day.
i also got a really good book off amazon called *first year ibs by heather van vorous* and this has given me so much information, help, advise, everything! the author has been an ibs sufferer for 20 years and really knows her stuff. It is a very personal illness and what upsets my tummy might not upset yours so do experiment. one thing i have found that helps is fresh bread ie french bread. hmmmmmmmmmmmm.... yummy! please email me if you want to talk more.

Louella37 Thu 28-Jun-07 17:09:38

Thanks for your advice!

Hoping i will be able to get Colpermin or something similar over the counter, is this right?

Disco Fever - i will look for that book on amazon, i would imagine it will be more helpful if the author has experience of IBS. Non-sufferers can rarely understand IBS fully and i realise why, until i started with it I didn't give my bowels a second thought!

jimmyjamas Thu 28-Jun-07 19:11:34

Louella. I also suffer IBS - its bloody miserable isn't it?

When you say you have been diagnosed as wheat intolerant, does this mean you have to avoid bread, cakes etc. Is your diet as strict as someone suffering from Coeliacs? I am a bit confused - I don't know if wheat intolerance and coeliacs are the same do you know??

Louella37 Thu 28-Jun-07 21:47:36

Jimmyjamas - as i am aware, gluten is a type of wheat protein so i have to avoid the majority of foods like a coeliac does.

In my experience of reading food labels, if something says it contains gluten then it usually contains wheat. i err on the side of caution though as i really don't want the nasty consequences!

Have you tried cutting out any foods?

wrinklytum Thu 28-Jun-07 21:51:43

My mum has IBS.

She uses colpermin and swears by peppermint tea.

Consultant reccomended using those prebiotic actimel type yoghurt drinks which she tried but did not think wee much use for her,but maybe worth a try.

Stres tends to worsen her symptoms.She avoids alcohol and caffiene.


Louella37 Thu 28-Jun-07 22:09:55

Hi wrinklytum!

I also find peppermint tea soothing, i drink two cups a day and find it does help. I didn't find the Actimel's any use either tbh! I do try to stay off the caffeine, i don't like tea/coffee or cola, but the chocolate reels me in sometimes

However i have heard of a prebiotic tablet called Acidophilius (or something along those lines!) which is supposed to be good, has anyone tried this?

jimmyjamas Fri 29-Jun-07 08:52:48

Louella - you can get the prebiotic tablets from Holland & Barrett. I haven't tried them but may well do.

As for cutting out wheat stuff. My doctor told me to have no more than 1 slice of toast/bread a day. Cut out cakes, pastries, but he said not to be too strict as someone with Coeliacs.

I have noticed bread makes me feel bloated and also gives me wind.

FunMumm Fri 29-Jun-07 08:59:21

I have IBS and I find my symptoms bad if I eat too much wheat... I now limit my intake of bread and wheat based food.

I don't take any medication...

JoolsToo Fri 29-Jun-07 09:00:47

I've had Mebeverine with not much effect but Mintec were quite good for my symptoms.

Try Linseeds from Holland & Barratt (really cheap) they worked absolute WONDERS for me.

JoolsToo Fri 29-Jun-07 09:01:08

Mintec WAS!

Louella37 Fri 29-Jun-07 10:52:48

It was awful at first to cut out wheat but it made a huge difference to my symptoms. now it's just normal not to eat it!

Jools - i think i will try the linseeds as i have heard lots of good stuff about them. i don't eat cereal or anything similar, so will i be able to stir them into yoghurt?

JoolsToo Fri 29-Jun-07 12:14:33

Yes definitely I know someone who ate them that way.

Good Luck - give them at least a couple of weeks to work although it will probably be sooner

chopchopbusybusy Fri 29-Jun-07 12:24:34

Have you been tested for coeliac disease? Coeliac disease is thought to affect 1 in 80 people but currently in the UK only 1 in 250 are diagnosed. Many people who are diagnosed with IBS do turn out to be coeliac. Too many GPs still (wrongly) believe that coeliac is always diagnosed in children and so just don't consider it when adults arrive at their surgery with digestive disorders. The first step for a diagnosis is a blood test but you do have to be eating a normal gluten containing diet for at least six weeks or the result will be negative. I'm curious how did they diagnose wheat intolerance?

FlamingTomatoes Fri 29-Jun-07 12:28:31

have you tried fibogel? I get chronic diarrhoea with IBs and I find fibogel really helps me

AttilaTheMeerkat Fri 29-Jun-07 12:30:30

Louella37 (and particularly ginandt)

Are your periods very painful?. I only ask this as if this is the case you should also be investigated to see if endometriosis (and not IBS) is the underlying cause.

Know of some women who have been misdiagnosed with IBS when infact endometriosis is to blame for their problems (the endometrical deposits can go onto the intestinal walls causing spasms).

MaureenMLove Fri 29-Jun-07 12:35:25

DH used to suffer with what the doctor called IBS. IBS seems to cover a whole range of bowel problems. His was actually a lot more serious in the end, heeps worse that anything you have described, but he did get some relief from prebiotic foods and also learnt to eat cereal. You need to start you day with a bit of fibre! Have you asked the doc if you could see a dietician? It might help.

Louella37 Fri 29-Jun-07 15:04:58

Thanks Jools!

Chopchop - my lovely GP helped me to do a food diary to map my symptoms, eliminating wheat then reintroducing it again. She basically said, that's it! The hospital did ask me to do a test for coeliac disease, but i am really scared of swallowing the tube as i know someone who had a bad experience!

Flamingtomatoes - I have currently started drinking one sachet of isphagula hulk every day, i presume this is similar to fibogel? at the moment i'm not suffering with diarrhoea too much, but my doctor said to try this for the painful muscle spasms.

Attila - I have heard of this being the case before but did not realise this could apply to the spasms. I do have relatively painful periods but not sure if they are bad enough for endometriosis. I have been told that everything 'down there' is linked, do you know if is this true? do women with IBS tend to suffer more gynaecological probs?

Maureen - I did ask about the dietician when the wheat intolerance first became apparent, but she basically said i've got more chance of seeing pigs fly than seeing a sympathetic one! i have worked things out myself to be honest, i don't know how much more they could tell me.

With regards to the fibre, i do try to eat enough as this seems to help, but it's harder when you don't eat wheat. I just try to eat lots of fruit and veg, but even wheat-free multigrain products don't seem to agree with me!

Sorry for the long post and thanks to everyone for getting back to me! xxx

AttilaTheMeerkat Fri 29-Jun-07 16:19:28

Hi Louella,

Re your comment to me

"I have heard of this being the case before but did not realise this could apply to the spasms. I do have relatively painful periods but not sure if they are bad enough for endometriosis. I have been told that everything 'down there' is linked, do you know if is this true?

The commonest symptom associated with endo is pain. This pain is usually cyclical and linked to menstruation, although some women have pain at the time of ovulation, or throughout the menstrual cycle. is a good website and has lots of info re symptoms etc.

All studies agree however, that the large intesting is the commonest site of involvement after the female reproductive organs. The symptoms of intestinal endo (which usually occurs during menstruation) include abdominal pain (which may be continuous, distention and bloating, constipation, diarrhoea, back pain, rectal pain or spasm, symptoms similar to IBS.

"Do women with IBS tend to suffer more gynaecological probs?"

I would say that some women with gynae problems like endo are often misdiagnosed with IBS.

Louella37 Mon 02-Jul-07 12:20:14

Thanks Attila, I will definitely have a look at the website!

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