This is a very long explanation, so bear with me please.
I am a 27 year old male who has been dirt poor his whole life, and never had the benefit of health insurance. Before I explain my problem directly, some medical history related to my problem should be shared.
My entire life, I've had irritable bowel syndrome (or at least, that is the diagnosis of exclusion since I, or my mother who took care of me as a child never had the money for a proper GI workup). The pain is constant, and has been so every day of my life. Every time I have the urge to have a bowel movement, which is used to be two to three times a day regardless of what I ate, and during the act itself, the pain was similar to what I've heard described as what childbirth feels like. To be more specific, that's what it felt like when I was a child- after 27 years of it I've become so desensitized to pain I ignore it; I have become able to drive nails directly into my flesh, or put a cigarette out on my arm, and not even acknowledge it. I realize this raises a slew of further questions, and there is a whole lot more to say about my own health history that has some significance, but it would take pages to explain, and the stomach issue is the most relevant thing, which leads me to my problem.
About five years ago, I saved up some money and had major, much and long needed dental work done. Immediately following it, I began having a massive slew of symptoms across nearly every body system, almost too numerous to account for in total, but I will try-
1. I began having anxiety attacks, every day, with no pattern of provocation at all. These cause tachycardia, dyspnia, massive spikes in blood pressure, and of course, the feeling of impending doom.
2. At times, especially when I lay down to bed at night, my nose becomes clogged and my sinuses swell. My mucous takes on the color and consistency of jell-o, and I cough it up for a long time. When I sit up, it tends to all disappear and go back to normal. This has lead to horrible insomnia and a fear of lying down.
3. My entire cholesterol profile has become massively high, even though I do not eat any worse or better than what is considered clinically average. My triglycerides are nearly 900, and my LDL was 250. The doctor I went to said I must have eaten eggs, or similar, but I had been fasting since the day before. I have since checked my overall cholesterol score on a handheld meter, and it showed as too high to read. Statin drugs made little difference.
4. My white blood cells have been slightly elevated consistently for the last five years. This could be just a normal idiosyncrasy. There are no other significant lab values.
5. My resting heart rate is 110, and my resting blood pressure is 150/90.
6. My lumbar region is constantly throbbing.
7. There is at times a strange buildup of fluid all around my head, which seems to be near my lymph nodes, and sometimes, by pressing on them so hard they bruise, it drains down my post nasal area and disappears- I cant tell if it's sinus or endocrine in nature, or something else.
8. I am often generally edematous, especially around my abdomen (though not consistent with ascites), but some in the face and limbs.
9. I have become very photophobic, experiencing mild headaches in the presence of excessive UV light and fluorescence.
10. I have had difficulty maintaining an erection at times, though I suspect this may have to do with either the anxiety or high blood pressure or both.
11. Finally and worst of all, my IBS has become ridiculous. Before there was excruciating pain and diarrhea or constipation, which over time, I had learned to mostly ignore. Now, I have developed incontinence, steatorrhea, bloody stools, and explosive diarrhea. Before, once in a blue moon, I would actually have a regular stool. I haven’t had anything but diarrhea in years now, three to ten times a day, sometimes only expelling water, and each bowel movement is differently abnormal than the one before it.
12. I haven't lost any weight. I consider this a symptom because I am a little on the heavy side, but despite what seems like a massive amount of excretion every day, not eating much more than 1800 calories a day consistently, and keeping an exercise regimen and active lifestyle, I haven't lost pound one.
Let me just say thank you if you've read this far into my story without giving up. If you are still interested in trying to help, read on because I would like to share a few more important things about this.
What I know it is not- a common bacteria, something wrong with any part of my blood, any sexually transmitted disease they test for when you get tested for them, any allergy to food or otherwise, a symptom of poor diet, hypochondria, any electrolyte imbalance, any imbalance of any other essential vitamin or mineral, diabetes, any cysts or growths in my upper respiratory tract, GERD, or anything smoking, drinking, or drug use related. I know it is none of these because they aren't applicable to me, I have been unsuccessfully treated for them, or I've gone broke, bankrupt, and destroyed my credit having doctors of any number of specialties test me for them and found it negative.
What I think it could be- interrelated, for one, because all my symptoms (except some of the intestinal ones) started at the same time, and have progressively gotten worse along the same time frame uniformly. A heart condition of some odd type, though my EKGs have been sinus tachycardia, I have shown no abnormal heart function labs, and my stress test was good (and I exercise quite a lot with no unexpected or abnormal fatigue). Something wrong with my adrenal gland, because it seems some of these could be caused by excess adrenaline over a long period of time, though not all of them (also I haven't had this tested as far as I know). Some type of cancer or neoplastic growth in my abdominal organs or brain. Some virus, flagellate, fungus, or parasite. Something autoimmune. Something I haven't thought of. And of course, I'm not apt to completely rule out having gone completely and utterly insane, though the onset of these things after dental surgery, their consistency, my ability to sustain at least an outward semblance of normal life, and the symptoms themselves worsening seems to disprove this theory to me (plus no one has told me I've been acting like anything other than myself).
I haven't had all the testing I want- I surely need ct scans, ultrasounds, and endoscopies, but I have to choose between them and food, and right now food wins. I also have to convince the doctors to ignore the Hippocratic oath, accept an uninsured patient, and listen to what I have to say and try to find something more complex and encompassing, which is the hardest part of all and the biggest deterrent (I've a feeling I don't need to explain that further to people on THIS site).
Finally, I should explain more specifically that I am very insensitive to pain and hurt, having felt a lot of it in my day, and I have a hard time accepting that there is something very wrong with me. But despite myself, I must admit I am becoming agoraphobic, and the debilitating-ness of the symptoms has become such that I know I won't be able to ignore it much longer. I refuse to let it depress me or let myself become suicidal, and believe it or not, I've been through much worse than this, psychologically AND physiologically. So here is my cry for help, though I don't really expect any. I'm starting to think it quite possible that this is going to kill me unless I can find an epiphany somewhere, or come into some great amount of money unexpectedly.
With my regards and happiness for bearing with me, I thank you from the bottom of my heart.
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