New Member - Saying Hello and looking for support

Hello. I'm Dave a 42 yr old male recently "diagnosed" with IBS. Before today I wasn't really aware of IBS, didn't know any sufferers but after a trip to my GP today was told I have IBS.

So my brief history is that I've always had an excitable bowel but in the last year (since a nasty appendicitis issue) have really begun to suffer with the last few months being particularly bad.

There is a direct correlation to stress and my current level of IBS and managing the stress is something that needs addressing (Having IBS isn't helping)

Now I thought a trip to the GP would provide a miracle cure but now realise that's not the case.

So I'm starting at the bottom (pardon the pun) and am looking at where to start with self help.

I know that there are certain foods that trigger very painful bouts of IBS, one clearly being Mayonaise, so avoid that.

After that I don't know where to start. I know there's a lot of reading to do but any specific tips people may have would be really appreciated.



9 Replies

  • Hi DD71,

    Welcome to the site, you've certainly come to the right place to get lots of help, tips and advice.

    First of all though, can you tell us what tests you've had done that make your GP think you've got IBS, what else has been ruled out, e.g. coeliac disease?

    What are your symptoms, are they diarrhoea- or constipation-predominant or do you alternatee between the two?


  • Hi Roz

    There were no tests done, they just came to that conclusion.

    Its almost like "oh you have a virus"

    Diarrhoea is my problem. I'm currently going 3/4 times a day and is quite sudden and on occasions very painful.

    In extreme cases I'm going 3/4 in a couple of hours which is very painful and I'm passing very loose stools, watery on most occasions. Bouts like this are more frequent at the moment, at least once a week.

    Fortunately my day job is such that I can sneak off when I need but I've had to place severe restrictions on my second job and social life.

    I've always avoided any form

    Of medication like Imodium as I'm a believer its better off out than in but in my current state may need to consider something in the short term.

  • Pretty bad practise not to have given you any tests and yes, what useful terms 'virus' and 'IBS' are when the medics don't really know what's wrong.

    I'd definitely go back to the GP and ask for a test for coeliac's and also for SIBO (small intestine bacterial overgrowth). You might also be interested to know that 50% of people diagnosed with IBS-D actually have Bile Acid Disorder/Malabsorption (BAD/BAM) so you should ask for a SeHCAT test as well which will determine if it's that (treatment is a doddle). Most people get to see a gastroenterologist too and have had cameras up, down or both.

    You could, in the meantime, try food elimination to stop the diarrhoea, and the best way that I know of doing that is by following the low-FODMAPs diet - it works for loads of people. The best web source for info about it is on the website for Monash University (Australia) where the diet was, and still is being, developed. You can download a brilliant smartphone app from there which uses a 'traffic lights' system for quick food reference (great when you're out eating or shopping).

    Best books about it are, 'IBS - Free At Last' by Patsy Catsos who has been trained at Monash and Sue Shepherd and Peter Gibson's book 'The Complete Low-FODMAP Diet: A Revolutionary Plan For Managing IBS And Other Digestive Disorders'. Sue Shepherd developed the diet at Monash so you can't really go wrong. Books are best bought as hardcopies as charts etc don't transpose well to eformat.

    Be advised and DON'T Google 'FODMAPs', all you'll get is countless, confusing websites with a lot of people professing to know what they're talking about when in fact they don't. Info floating around 'out there' is frequently out-of-date and usually just plain wrong.

    FODMAPs is not a diet-for-life, but a means of helping you eliminate one or more of five food groups which contain the most likely suspects for IBS symptoms. You must be absolutely committed to the regime in order to make it work for you though, especially during the initial, stringent elimination phase. It's tough but will most likely help you.

  • Thanks Roz. Have found the app so will make a start with that.

    Shame my GP wasn't half as helpful but at least Its opened the door on the issue.

  • I agree with everything Roz has said - fab advice. I would also look at acidophillus and Forever LIvings Aloe Vera gel. DOnt accept an IBS diagnosis without exhausting everything else. 2 of my children were fobbed off by 25 different doctors that they both had IBS and even told me that it was in their head that they were in pain! They also had the coeliac blood test which was negative on both of them. However 10% of coeliacs do not test positive in their blood ) point worth remembering if you get a negative on that test! After much nagging and being told I was a horrendous mother making my children ill I managed to get an endoscopy and colonoscopy done which revealed Coeliac disease! Within 10 days of cutting out gluten they were like different children .

    Good Luck, hope you soon feel better JO xx

  • I'd no idea that coeliacs couldn't always be detected by blood testing and I'm sure a lot of other people don't know that either - including some doctors by the sound of it. Great to hear that, despite being labelled the-mother-from-hell, you persevered and got a solution for your children. More power to your elbow!

  • Thanks for the info Jo. Usually I have a good relationship with my GP as they know I only turn up when something is not good. Yesterday's appointment was with a locum as my doc was on holiday.

    Will be back with information relating to the fodmap diet.


  • Roz , after the endo the doctor appeared with a big grin on his face and said " as suspected there's nothing wrong but I've sent the biopsies away " It was the biopsies that showed the coeliac disease , he hated having to ring up and say he'd found coeliac . Never once did he say sorry ! The aloe gel helped so much though before diagnosis . The elder of the two missed 35% of her school year it was awful . I feel for all of you that get ibs as a diagnosis without them doing all the tests . Good luck to you all - keep pushing xx

  • As a parent Jo, its tough enough when your kids aren't well and battling to get them sorted must have been so frustrating.

    I'm certainly glad there's a outcome for you all. As an adult I'm suffering but can mask it and plod on, to imagine a child suffering like that is awful.

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