Severe bloating (without eating food) - IBS Network

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Severe bloating (without eating food)


Dear all,

Do any of you fellow IBS sufferers get severe bloating which appears randomly (therefore not food-induced)?

I am going to start investigations once again (this time going privately, via medical insurance) and as my case is quite complex (may also have endometriosis) I just wanted to gather your thoughts.

To give you a synopsis, there are days in which I already wake up to a very bloated/distended abdomen (this simulates a pregnant women during her 3-5 month's stage). Other days it appears more towards the evening and others it just comes and goes as it wishes.

Another curious thing I have noticed is that the bulk is often lop-sided either more inflated to the left or to the right., though it has a predisposition for the left side.

I know for sure it is not food related, given that if I wake up to it, it's clear my stomach is empty first thing in the morning. I am also really vigilant of what I eat and avoid certain things that could create excessive gas (i.e: cruciferous vegetables, pulses, etc.).

There are times when it gets worse 2 weeks just before my period, however as mentioned earlier, it's pattern is pretty random.

This is often accompanied by a "pulling" sensation on my pelvic area, specially towards the sides and groin area, as well as the usual daily pains I have (cramps, stabbing, piercing and burning pains).

This continues to get worse during my 2 year battle so far. So I have now started to dress differently in order to offer some sort of comfort (i.e: no skirts as this means wearing restrictive tights, baggier trousers and tops to allow extra room for the bloated abdomen.

I find the whole thing baffling as well as really uncomfortable. And none of the remedies advised by medics work (this also includes alternative therapies such as acupuncture, herbs, teas, turmeric,etc).

Grateful for any advice!

14 Replies

Hi Popetta

Sorry to hear about your bloating problems. I started suffering with this 12 years ago just after my dad died. Eventually went privately to a Food Clinic who diagnosed Candida. Over the years I’ve learnt to control it with wise food choices and it’s certainly improved.

However in the last year 2 separate medications made it very bad indeed & I can tell it’s not food related.

I had an injection for osteoporosis in July and have been bloated ever since so counting the days for it to wear off. In desperation a few weeks ago I spotted “Bimuno “ probiotic powders on google- the reviews are very encouraging so I’m on day 4 and hopeful things will improve.

I pray this will get sorted for you. Bloating is very dibilitating

Regards Frankie 1955

If you are going private ask your specialist for a test for Dysbiosis. Wishing you well.

Popetta in reply to denvajade

Thank you denvajade, I have now added this to my list of test requests.


Hi Popetta,

My IBS got to the point that I bloated up like I was 8 months pregnant every morning. I found my triggers were partly food and partly stress-related/emotional ones.

I no longer have IBS.

You may find some articles on my blog can help you move forward:


If you are going private get them to also check your gall bladder, I have had this bloating too that has got bad, like you I no longer wear skirts unless elastcated in the summer. My trousers are also elastcated too. I have just been told I have a gallstone and looking at the symptoms it gives the same as IBS. I am suffering the most horrendous heartburn and acid reflux now as well, oh joy. I have IBS, diverticulitis and Fibromyalgia too. Hope you find the answer Jackie

Popetta in reply to Ibs17

Hello Jackie, yes it is also worth checking that.

I had an ultrasound on upper abdominal area/GI tract over a year ago (via NHS) in which they also checked my gallbladder and results came back all clear. However saying that, they also did a transvaginal ultrasound at the same time and were unable to detect blatantly visible PCOS!!They totally denied I had PCOS when I had been diagnosed years ago (by different medics). And PCOS is not a condition that comes & goes like Christmas (the mind boggles...)

One year down the line, I had a ruptured cyst without even knowing, this coincided with me having to take time off work because the pain was unbearable and I just couldn't function. Found out post-rupture after I persisted with my GP to refer me to a gynae who carried out another ultrasound. Months have now gone by but unfortunately the pain and all other symptoms persist including this mystery of bloating.

Similar in some ways to what I have. Is it relieved by passing wind....a lot of wind?

Popetta in reply to stuart1966

I'm afraid not Stuart...

Great article Little_toad! thank you very much for sharing!

Weard that your bloating is exactly like mine ..i have ibs /D even after a horrible Diahrrea attack ..when my stomach and colon supposed to be empty ..i still have this "baby bump" or bloat ..same yours it's more raised in left side looking awkward !! Not only that ..i have strange random involuntary movements under my bloat ..i can actually see my stomach move up and down exactly like a baby movement of a pregnant woman !! it's creepy and i hate it 😨..i'm so skinny just 40 kg yet with a bloat of a 5 months pregnant lady ..and No i'm sure not pregnant ..did an ultrasound and the only findings were mild bladder Cystitis and a small cyst on my left ovary ..could this be the cause ?? even doctors are puzzled and don't have a clear answer ..most of them say that because i'm so skinny ..i can see intestines movement !! ibs should be rephrased or renamed ( I don't know what the h🔥ll is wrong with you !!) disease 😥😩😢

Popetta in reply to Eternity78

Eternity78 you've just described something I have also experienced which is part of the bump moving up/down similarly to when a baby kicks. That could just be gas passing, however I too find it really strange.

I discovered I have a ruptured cyst on left ovary by chance, because I persisted with my GP to refer me to another doctor as the pain I was having was just unbearable, to the point that I had to be off work for 2 weeks as simply could not function in that state. So he referred me to a gynae. After an ultrasound they discovered evidence of a ruptured cyst. They told me to monitor the pain situation as they could still not guarantee that this was the cause. Too right! because a couple of months down the line and I'm still the same.

Ibs17 in reply to Popetta

Hugs xxx Why won’t they do something to help us all. It is a daily struggle, I had scan but it picked up gallstone, I did wonder if it was my ovaries as the only reason they scanned was my age and the possibility of ovarian problems.I am nearly a month on from scan and so I’ll, but hey ho just get on with life as they won’t do anything will they? Take care xx

Ibs17 in reply to Eternity78

Yep I agree totally with the renaming 😂 I have been backwards and forwards to GP for years. Am so bloated now, severe heartburn, acid reflux and nausea. Everyone keeps saying go back to GP or change GP ask to be sent to different hospital. But they just don’t understand it’s not bloody worth the effort, you won’t be taken seriously and they won’t do nothing. I only got scan coz of my age. It could well be your ovarian cyst if you look on NHS website those sound like symptoms. Believe me I have scared myself silly over the years. I have given up completely now. Am hardly eating anything as I feel so bad. I will either get better or seriously ill. Have told hubby if I’m seriously ill just let me go I can’t take anymore of this. Life is such a struggle and finding it hard to function let alone work. Keep going back to your GP though, or ask for a second opinion.

@popetta you encouraged me to go for another ultrasound ..maybe my cyst also has ruptured ..hopefully ! at least there is a reason or a cause to the abnormalities we're suffering from ..being in pain and agony daily is debilitating enough ..Not konwing the root cause is even more frustrating 😣

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