Sunday, March 24, 2013
It's been a long month since I updated last. I have had a colonoscopy (no Crohn's of the colon, no polyps, no ulcerative colitis, no inflammation of the colon, biopsy showed no microinflammation), a bacteria overgrowth breath test (we have found that I do in fact have Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth) and blood work (thyroid levels are right on track) and yet still have unanswered questions. We do not know what has caused the SIBO. We are treating with two antibiotics now (and these pills are pretty nasty) in hopes of wiping it out. I am waiting on the results of my latest lab for C-Reactive Protein so that we can track in there is still inflammation within the body or if this is just residual illness. I had to take some laxatives today so that I can produce watery enough stool samples for them to test for parasites (my chronic diarrhea at this point is more fatty/greasy than watery).
I still have the rash on my hand.
Still have the overall skin crawling itchy almost every minute of every day.
Still have the muscle fatigue/weakness most days. Thursday or Friday I was erasing the white board at work and had my arm raised in the air for maybe 30 seconds and I just ached and ached down my rib cage, neck, back, shoulders. There is a lot of undigested food in my stool so the theory is that the SIBO is causing some sort of malabsorption.
There are many possibilities as to the cause of SIBO. I could have a parasite (if this laxative ever kicks in I can turn in the samples tomorrow and hopefully know within a week). I could have Crohn's of the small bowel. I could have some structural defect of the small bowel (unlikely since I have never had abdominal surgery). It could be that my food has too many antibiotics in it and as they kill the bad bacteria, they kill the good as well and only the good grows back. It could be that I have some sort of food sensitivity that is causing food and stool to sit in my bowels too long, causing an increase in bad bacteria. It is possible that the two-a-day stomach acid reducer I am on for the awful pain/burning/acid reflux/gastritis is reducing my stomach acid so much (which is the point) that there is no acid to kill bacteria as food passes from the stomach to the small intestine.
At this point I am very frustrated. The doctor is frustrated.
I don't feel that I am adequately describing the pain I feel before bowel movements. Most of the time I am pain free but I am on painkillers twice a day along with the stomach acid reducers. When I try to reduce those or stop those, I am very very uncomfortable. I notice if I miss a dose. I feel it if I am late on a dose.
I asked if mold can cause it.
I have a list of about 12 questions I want to ask the physician and specialist at my next follow up appointment(s) but that isn't until May 6.
In the mean time walking around the grocery store leaves me winded and tired and weak and thirsty let alone vigorous exercise so I am kind of failing in that department. I have lost weight, but I am pretty sure that is mostly due to the fact that a lot of what I eat just comes back out again a couple hours later.
But my thyroid disorder is now within normal limits so that's good news and it rules it out as the source of my current issues. It could have been contributing but it is not the cause.
I just feel that 2013 hasn't started yet for me. My goal this year is to lose 60 pounds (at least) and to be off all these drugs they have me on. If I could get rid of the pain killers and the antibioitics and the hypertension meds and if we could reduce the number of antacids I am on, I am confident that my body will be much happier.
I know we have a whole string of tests to do and probably are not too far from eliminating certain foods from my diet to see if we can find a culprit. If any of you have heard of SIBO and have any suggestions, please shout them out!
Hope you are all having blessed days. At the end of the day I am blessed to have the means to do all of these tests (even if it means I have bills forever) and I have family and friends who are supportive and helpful. Not everyone has that. And some have to go through way worse things than I do without all the support systems, so I am so grateful.
Have a good night SparkPeople!