Alternating ibs : Hi, I’ve suffered with ins for... - IBS Network

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Alternating ibs


Hi, I’ve suffered with ins for a long time now, been for tests etc and all clear although the last colonoscopy I had they removed quite a few pollops. I would say since then (a couple of years) I’ve really struggled with it. I’ve tried tweaking diet but only to find that what’s good one week isn’t good the following week so doesn’t matter what I eat it still affects me. A bad day I am constantly in the toilet, spasms/ really painful and generally end up with a mucus before finally emptying, then I end up with pain in lower back and just generally feel unwell. I take setraline and omeprazole and recently read that omeprazole could be a problem with ibs so I’m going to try and not take it for a wee while. Any other suggestions would be welcome.

20 Replies

It sounds like classic IBS to me. I think it's worth a try laying off the omeprazole for a while. But otherwise I'm afraid I have no answers. I, like you, don't think it's the food that I am eating. How long have you been on the sertraline?

Been on setraline for about 3-4 years now previously I was on and off Prozac. I’ve stopped taking the omeprazole this morning and instead taking silicogel so I’ll see how that goes. I’m also trying acidophilus probiotic and vitamin b12, this had a success for a wee while a year or so ago so trying again.

Yes, that's about all you can do, keep trying things. You never know perhaps you'll get someone come back to you tomorrow with something you haven't tried. Do you take the sertraline for the IBS or for something else. I was given some about six months ago but haven't tried them. I was given some prozac about 20 years ago but ended up sitting on the floor shaking after about a month. So I stopped taking them!

I take the sertraline for a kind of anxiousness which I’ve suffered most my life, was on Prozac for years but didn’t feel any better with them then a cbt therapist got me changed to sertraline and feel really good with them, would be a bugger if they contributed to my ibs? Hope not.

Sorry, I didn't get back to you last night, I fell asleep! I would be interested in your dosage. I have been given 50mg tablets (one a day) for the IBS. This is because my doctor says it's anxiety which I think is complete crap (excuse the pun). I have had IBS for 35 years. I don't know why the medical profession can't just admit that they don't know how to treat it, rather than blame us for it!! Sorry a bit of a rant there but I don't do it very often. ☺

I take 100mg (one a day) keeps me tickin over.

I'm sure it's not contributing to your IBS. I was just wondering if it would help my IBS!? I am really hesitant to try it as the prozac had such a bad effect on me! How are you getting on with the silicogel?

I can only say it’s nothing like the Prozac, I was on Prozac for a number of years for my anxiety but every review with doctor I said it’s not working as I felt worse at time, it wasn’t until I was referred to sessions of cbt that she advised doctor to put me on sertraline. After about a month I felt different and more in control but nothing of how I felt on Prozac. I would say give it a go, even if you take every other day until it’s in your system, but would be down to you

Thank you so much for that, I have never had a chance to speak to anyone about it because I don't know of anyone who takes it. Would you say it helps your IBS in any way or not. I don't suffer from anxiety but obviously get a bit anxious when trying to get to appoints etc working around the IBS. Also, I am finding the IBS much more diffiuclt to cope with now I am older. I have always found a system to try and get through each day but I am in so much pain somedays, I can't think through it.

I don’t actually know if it helps the ibs, (as yet) with me on my 3rd day off of omeprazole after finding out on here that it is a factor in making your ibs worse, I don’t think my system is quite right yet to notice. I’ve also started taking acidophilus friendly bacteria and vitamin b12, this did help before but I remember it was before I went onto omeprazole, looking back now I’ve not been able to control it since so I’m hoping coming off it will help. You could even split the sertraline into two and take half a tab per day to see if it helps?

I might leave it a bit longer, until things settle down a bit more with COVID. They last until 10/2022, so no rush. I prefer not to take anything really because whatever I take seems to mess with the IBS, but thank you again for all your help. Lets us know how it goes without the omeprazole.

Good morningI would stay off the Omeprazole, its the first thing my new GP removed from my perscription, as it can make IBSD worse. Hope youu feel better soon. Xx

Hi Claire, thanks, for the short time I’ve been on here, reading other people’s chats and gettin feedback for my own it would seem omeprazole is a definite trigger. That’s me off them for 2nd day so we’ll keep going and hopefully get even a wee change.

Hope it makes a difference. Have you tried Entersol Gel, it has really made symptoms improve. I still take Mebeverine and codeine if need be. But Entersol Gel is amazing stuff. Works for me and I have tried lots of probiotics, including Alflorex. Might be worth a try. Claire xx

Tried the entersol gel briefly but maybe not long enough and the alflorex I haven’t tried so I’ll get onto that. 👍🏻

The Alflorex made me so poorly, but other people have had great success with it. Xx

Got some today so will give it a go

Orchid99 in reply to Claire44

I was on omeprazole for 5 years, mainly caused me constipation which was not bothersome at all but then caused loose stools coming of it which I'm still suffering with now, been ppi free since January 2020 so I'm basically worse now then when I was on it, although my upper GI issue is better.

Here is some information about IBS that I have shared with others in this group in case any of these tips are of interest to you:

IBS can be due to a number or combination of factors - these can be stress (including stress from early life experiences) which impacts the communication between the brain and the digestive system. There are lots of free webinars online at the moment regarding mindfulness meditation which might help. Plus you can ask to be referred for CBT or something similar to reduce anxiety - I would have thought online appointments are available. Exercise can play a major role in IBS in terms of reducing stress, helping your gut microbiome and regulating bowel movements.

There is also not absorbing certain types of carbohydrates called FODMAPs very well, the residue ending up in the colon and bacteria feeding off them causing symptoms. Ordinarily feeding gut bacteria is a really good thing - when you feed good gut bacteria these produce by-products that have great health effects in the gut and throughout the body. However, in some people with IBS bad bugs might have the upper hand over good - these bad bugs may cause symptoms such as excess gas, pain or disordered bowel movements. There is an interesting infographic on this here:

This is why it’s worth trying probiotics such as Alflorex (which has been scientifically studied for IBS) to crowd out the bad bugs and make their numbers die down. If that doesn't work you can try the FODMAP elimination and reintroduction diet. This is normally under the guidance of a nutritionist via GP referral - this may not be possible at the moment so you can read about it online. If you download the Monash University FODMAP app and Kings College fodmap apps, they will tell you which foods contain FODMAPs and in what quantities. You can eliminate all FODMAPs for 2 weeks and then introduce each type of FODMAP one at a time starting in small quantities, increasing over a 3 day period and wait up to 4 days for symptoms. I go much slower than this - only introducing a small amount (1/4 to 1/3 of a normal portion size) of the same food for 3 days and then increase if tolerable or no symptoms and cut back to the previous amount if symptoms for longer and then try to increment again . I've read your microbiome can adapt to handling a new food if introduced very slowly and your bad bugs are under control with a good probiotic. Ideally you want to eat as many FODMAPs as you can since they are good for your health. Many people with IBS don't have diverse gut bacteria - it has been found that people who lack a diverse microbiome are more prone to diseases in general. In the long run, if you can get your symptoms under control, the ideal situation is to have a very varied diet - lots of different coloured fruits and vegetables, a variety of protein and carbohydrate sources including cereal fibres. This may seem a long way off, but with the right treatment all of this is possible. The year before last all I could consume to control my IBS was white rice, protein and limited low fodmap veg. Using the approach above (particularly introducing Alflorex) I am now able to consume far more foods - more than I've ever dreamed of including wholewheat bread which is unheard of for me.

If you are also suffering from pain, you may be suffering from visceral hypersensitivity (functional abdominal pain) - there is info about it here:

It is where the brain interprets the normal activity of the bowel as pain - this is due to a wearing down of neurons in pain control centres of the brain which can be caused by PTSD, neglect or abuse in childhood, extreme stressful events etc. The first line treatment is nerve pain agents such as low dose amitriptyline. There is a theory that being on something like amitriptyline for 6-12 months can help the pain control centre neurons to regenerate. Note that amitriptyline can cause constipation, but this can be helpful in people who are diarrhea dominant. Unfortunately I couldn't tolerate these. Linaclotide (for IBS-C only) & Alflorex have helped me with this intestinal pain.

You may also find assistance with anti-spasmodic medication such as mebeverine (Colofac) or enteric coated peppermint.

You can find some info on self management here:

If all of the usual IBS remedies fail and you are experiencing diarrhea, it is worth getting tested for BAM (Bile Acid Malabsorption), which can cause constant diarrhea - there is a separate test and treatment for that. Good luck.

BaneOfRagnar in reply to xjrs

Thank you for all that information, I will read up on the links later. I never got any of this info from doctor (apart from fodmap diet) and wish I’d looked at one of these websites before for some advice.

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