Like most of you I stumbled across this wonderful community trying to self-diagnose. After reading LOTS of posts in search of comfort I felt it best to share my situation and hopefully find support.
I started drinking in my early 20's which was limited mainly to weekends. From 23 to 32 my consumption increased to 5-6 days/week at varying levels of misuse. In spite of the prolonged abuse I managed to lead an otherwise very active/healthy eating lifestyle, exercising 5 times/week, maintaining 175lbs @ 6’2” and never taking any OTC meds. That all changed 3 years ago (baby on the way) when I began going really hard in the paint (~8-12 drinks daily)…within a year and a half I ballooned to 225lbs.
Determined to lose the “baby weight” I resumed a strict diet and exercise regimen losing 50lbs over the course of 6 months (in hindsight maybe I was too strict?). It’s worth mentioning that in lieu of abstaining, I switched my beverage to the healthiest concoction I could find: Vodka and flavored water. *sigh* Anyways, around the time I was getting close to my “fighting weight” I noticed a slight discomfort in my upper right abdomen. It wasn’t pain per say, more like an intermittent full sensation that came and went throughout the day. I figured it was due to the drinking and to test that hypothesis laid off the booze; finding the discomfort disappeared after a couple days. Just to be sure it wasn’t serious I had extensive bloodwork done (Oct 2017); everything came back in the normal range. Since receiving the results I’ve ping-ponged between binges/abstinence, junk/clean food and sloth/fitness leading us to the present day and my purpose for posting.
(For what it’s worth throughout the past 15 years they were many MANY random stretches of weeks and/or months where I did not drink or, at the very least, consumed under the recommended limits.)
My Current Situation:
Last week the abdominal discomfort returned, but in a different fashion. Over the past 7 days, anytime I eat I feel a dull ache/pain starting in my upper left abdomen and slowly shifting to the upper right abdomen. I find great relief in the form of gas (either end) but it takes an act of god to get it moving. Nevertheless, even when I haven’t eaten the upper right abdomen sensation varies from burning, to fullness, to non-existent and back again.
Family History and Symptoms:
Family history: GI issues (Diverticulitis, IBS, GERD, etc.), Gallstones.
I am not: Jaundiced, Itchy, Nauseas, Vomiting.
I have: Normal-colored/routine stools (sinkers), clear urine (2-3 gallons of water/day for past ~10 years), good appetite, cut-out booze.
I’ve scheduled a doctor’s appointment for Wednesday, but in the meantime I’m freaking out. Holding my daughter brings me to tears: How could I be so selfish? I’m supposed to provide, protect and support and I’ve wasted my body for what? Ugh…I’m so scared for what lies ahead.
For You, the Reader:
Do you have any recommendations for tests I should insist on?
Based on my history of abuse have I passed the point of no return?
Thank you for taking the time to read….