Stomach discomfort

Hi I am a frequent watcher of this site, but have not really posted any questions myself. I have had PBC for 10 years ( well diagnosed that long). I have cirrhosis and portal hypertension. I went to see my specialist on weds and told him that every time I eat anything at all my stomach aches feeling bloated, and bruised like I've been punched or something. Similar to overeating but worse, even when I've only eaten a small amount , which is all I can handle anyway. He looked at my last scan results and said that the level of portal hypertension is significant and that is what is causing the problem. He explained that when you eat there is an increase of blood to the stomach and that if there is difficulty for the blood to flow back freely that this would cause the symptoms I describe. He said its like having a tourniquet on your arm and try to exercise the muscle, it would be very painful. Anyway, physiology wise this makes sense, but I don't remember reading that anyone else suffers like this?? Has anyone else been told this.

He has organised an OGD, and a scan with Doppler, then may consider beta blockers. However he wants to be cautious with that as my main, and very debilitating symptom is fatigue, I also already have fairly low blood pressure, sometimes getting short episodes of dizzy/ faint spells. So we might try something and only continue if it actually improves the stomach pain.

Would be grateful to hear from anyone with experience of this, and advice they received.

Best wishes


6 Replies

  • It may be your diet if you are not over eating that causes the pain. Do you eat organic yogurt with live cultures. It settles the gut, calms it. Some of it is gas. I struggle with it almost always. Best of luck.

  • Hi catfishjumpin, I don't have any issues with ' gas' or heartburn or indigestion. It is not an epigastric pain. It makes no difference what or when I eat. I thought it was because my spleen in enlarged and when the stomach has food in it is more squashed?? However the Dr says it's due to congestion of blood because of pressure in the vessels??

    Thanks for the reply.

  • My stomach started like that and I'm now on 2x20mg omeprazole daily. Stated on 20mg. Had endoscopy which was fine. Told it's the azathioprine that's doing it.

  • Hi, I have all the same, I had a Liver Tipps put into my Liver for my Portal Hypertension, that was to relieve the pressure in the Liver, portal vein, I have enlarged spleen and nodules on my liver, just had an aneurysm in the spleen coiled in January, I can't eat much, wass71 is quite right, it's the pressure in the blood vessels, I,m so bloated and can only eat small amounts, I feel like I've been punched in the stomache, I'm on a beta blocker which is to help the portal hypertension, and helps keep varrisis in the gullet at bay, I've been lucky so far, I've been put on Famotidine 20mg, for acid reflux, they are helping as the others were no good for me, hope some of what I said helps you, xx

  • Wass71

    I am now with new liver (PBC) (thanks to donor and Newcastle team) but I had very similar experience to you, fatigue, diziness, I took to drinking Ensure drinks on prescription inbetween small meals, I think this helped. HE was my worst symtom.

    good luck.

  • Thank you for these replies. It seems my Dr is taking the correct approach.

    Grankids3, what was it that finally made them decide to do the tips procedure?? Not just because of stomach pain???? Was it to do with varices bleeding??

    PCBnPBC, I have seen your posts and read some of your tales about HE, sorry you suffered so badly. But glad you have had a transplant. Not sure I need ensure yet, as I am able to eat small amounts, I have lost an enormous amount of weight due to nausea for 2 years. I have now maintained my bmi between 20 - 22. My Dr said I can eat whatever I can tolerate, so tend to stick with small amounts of fairly high calorie foods ( no low fat for me).

    Best wishes


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