Possible IBS after car accident?

Hi everyone,

Three months ago I had a bad car accident. I shattered my left elbow, my left knee and foot and my right femur. I have just left full time hospital and now attend as a 'day patient' two afternoons a week for physiotherapy.

Since the accident I have suffered from recurrent bouts of constipation and diarrhoea, and I feel nauseous all the time and have no appetite.

I live in France and the healthcare system has been brilliant with regard to my broken bones, but not so good with regard to the digestive problems. The suggestion with regard to the nausea is that it is stress-related (which could well be true as I do worry about everything all the time), but I have been given a drug called Veratran, which is a type of benzodiazopine and is only recommended for use for 8 - 12 weeks. I have been on it for 8 weeks and the dose has just been increased. I am very worried about its addictive properties and the rebound anxiety problems I may have when eventually coming off it.

I have also been prescribed Domperidone (which helps food move faster through the gut), which I feel may not help with the bouts of diarrhoea, and Omeprazole, two of the side effects of which are nausea and vomiting and diarrhoea!

I am trying to eat more fibre in the form of prunes and fruit and veg, and to drink a glass of orange juice each day, along with lots of water.

My doctor has now decided that I should have a colonoscopy, but I am not sure this is the course to follow, as I feel I could well have developed IBS.

Has anyone else developed IBS after an accident or other traumatic event?

Has anyone got any ideas what I can do to help myself?

Thank you so much for reading this.


6 Replies

  • The number of meds you're taking will not help your digestion. That aside I would say try a chiropractor who may be able to gently manipulate your body (probably lower back) as it sounds like the accident could have jarred something in your body.

  • Sorry to read of all your problems, but it has long been thought that a traumatic incident can sometimes trigger IBS. Mine developed 10 years ago after the death of my husband, and I've had various tests and tried lots of different medications, some of which helped, but never for very long. I don't recognize the ones you are taking, but maybe they're called something different in the U.K. I had 4 sessions of hypnotherapy earlier this year, and would really recommend that as a way of helping you to relax and not get stressed out - I was constantly worrying about my stomach, which made it worse. Through this helpful website I recently read about a product called Kolanticon which I have now been taking for 2 weeks and am finding it very helpful so far. I know from experience that French medical care is excellent - my late husband was in intensive care in Limoges for 3 weeks before our return to the U.K. where he sadly died from cancer 4 weeks later. You say your doctor has suggested a colonoscopy so I suggest you go ahead with that in case it shows up anything.

    IBS seems a very complex condition, and different people can suffer lots of different symptoms, so it just seems a case of trying various remedies to see which ones help your particular situation. Have read a lot recently about the FODmap diet, which appears to give good results for some people, and am waiting an appnt. with a dietitian, so suggest you Google that for more information.

    Hope some of this is helpful, and I wish you all the best. Let me know how you get on.

  • Mine was triggered by my husband's heart issue. Our stomach seems to be a reactor to fear and then it doesn't work as it used to. Finding food that doesn't produce an upset, that can last for days, is a daily journey and an individual journey. I kept a food diary for 6 months and that helped but I still get caught out sometimes. I'd have the test to eliminate any other problem. I have prunes and apricots every morning with Kellogs original bran, honey and yogurt and that moves easily through my system. Like you I was looking for fibre that my body accepted. It's really trial and error but out of it comes a way through. Go well and get well.

  • Thank you all for your replies. It seems as if I need to speak to my GP and voice my concerns about the meds I am on. I am not sure if French doctors even recognise IBS as a condition, but I will raise the possibility with him.

    I will also try different food combinations and see if I can find anything to improve my situation. Also, I am still hopeful that when I can walk more things may get better. Three and a half months sitting or lying down with no exercise cannot have helped the situation.

    Ausems - by sheer coincidence I was in Limoges hospital for six weeks after my accident!

    Many thanks again


  • By the way did your Dr tell you to eat more fibre? Seems strange when you are on meds to get everything moving faster. Cut back on the extra fibre as that's probably adding to the extra bowel movements until you get the meds rebooked at?

    Or course wait till you see yr Dr and if he takes you off the meds you can carry on High fibre and see how that works (foods being the better option over meds).

    If you are having diarrohea without the drugs then ask him to test you for Bile Acid Disorder.

  • Hi Ibsr, Yes, the Dr did say more fibre - or at least he said soak seven prunes overnight and then eat them in the morning and drink the juice!

    I know I must be a doctors worst nightmare because I always look up the possible side effects of meds and then question why they were prescribed in the first place, but I feel that some Drs just prescribe things because it is what they have always done, without really thinking about the possible effects. Anyway, I decided that if I was going to worry about whether what was happening to my bowels was a side effect of the meds or because my bowels were acting up all on their own I would stop the meds and just try natural remedies.

    So far there has been an improvement (although I still take spare clothes with me when I go out because I don't trust my guts!) and I am keeping everything very firmly crossed that I may be getting very slowly back to being OK.


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