Hi all. I've dipped into this site for years as/when my symptoms dictate. Seems I am in good company. I'm sorry this is so long but I'm unsure how else to seek help from this site...please bear with me.
I'm 42 have suffered ibs type symptoms on/off all of my adult life, have had scant success with doctors (who've happily prescribed anti spasmodics or colpermin but were otherwise pretty dismissive), have munched my way through charcoal, elimination diets, have swallowed untold supplements and have spent a fortune on otc and herbal remedies. So far so familiar.
I'd always suffered mostly from D, occasional C, but always the discomfort /frustration of incomplete evacuation, and always bloating and pain irrespective of what I ate/took. I found in 2012 that a low carb diet meant my stomach was at least a little less audible (it constantly growls and begs for food). Ive always been at the high end of my bmi and have difficulty losing weight, but in 2013 had a blood test for Crohns, celiac and thyroid as I lost a stone in 3 weeks undeliberately and had terrible constant D, wind, bloating. All tests came back negative. I then had huge improvement Sept 14 to June this year (surprising given I'd had the most stressful job of my life for 11 months of it). In June this year I was put on diazepam, codeine and naproxen for a back spasm. I expected the codeine C but was unprepared for the naproxen grinding up my insides. Immediately I suffered terrible C, bloating, water retention and inflamed insides. I stopped taking the naproxen after a week as I couldn't stand the swelling/pain and relied on lax's with the codeine. It was research at this point that led me to sibo.
I realised that for the 1st 8 months of my good period I'd been on daily Trimethoprim (for interstitial cystitis) and that this is used to treat sibo (and later found sibo is closely linked with bladder issues). Since July I've suffered mostly C (i stopped the codeine after 2 weeks) with intermittent D. I've put on weight, am always bloated with much discomfort. I saw a Dr late Sept who dismissed sibo but tested for h pylori (result was negative) and prescribed lansoprazole alongside probiotics (which have previously made bloating worse). The acid blockers meant I never got heartburn (though I didn't even mention an issue with that ) but the acid blockers caused terrible C, I had a new crampy/stitch pain above my navel and nausea. I took them for a month before stopping a week ago. My stomach is easing back to more normal, but only comparatively given how badly the Ppi affected me.
Various frustrating phone consultations resulted in another Dr suggesting a 2nd test for calprotectin. The lab then declined this test as they questioned the medical history (who are they to judge??) The Dr has now pursued this and referred me to a Gastro consultant. I await the appointment. It's all so frustrating and the reluctance to actually investigate makes me feel like a fraud.
Sorry this is so long and detailed. I don't feel that the improvement while on long term antibiotics is a coincidence, and neither is the problem following codeine. I've latched onto sibo as the clues fit and nothing else has been diagnosed. 3 times I've suggested a test for sibo. At best my record now states a Dr 'explained gut bacteria' to me (sigh), at worst I was told the nhs doesn't test 'as it's a very controversial diagnosis'. I await test results and appointment but am otherwise at my wit's end and the weight gain is not helping my mind set either. Can anyone shed any light on this please, or give me the benefit of their experience???
Here's hoping - many thanks!