8 years is a pretty big chunk being 28. The problem is so many things happened I couldnt pinpoint the symptoms properly.
I had glandular fever (americans call it something different) when i was 19 and everything kind of went downhill from there. It really didnt help that at 22 i began working night shift for nearly 3 years.
I was gaining weight, finding it harder and harder to lose weight, becoming more and more fatigued. The first thing i was diagnosed with was depression, which can cause fatigue. Since around 19 i also started getting a mucus discharge from my bowel. The doctor immediately dismissed the mucus as IBS.
Then while working nightshift (on taking amphetamines while off my depression medication) at around 22 when i started going to the toilet something was coming out of my bowel. Being 22 i didnt get it checked out straight away. i also had consistent niggling pain in my lower left side when i laid down.
All this time my fatigue was attriubted to my depression so i went to a psych and tried nearly every drug available, the side effects getting worse and worse. at 25 or 26 i had low iron, another thing not helping my fatigue.
meanwhile i couldnt work fulltime the fatigue was getting so bad. at 26 i had my gallbladder out from gallstones and started having stomach problems normally associated with loss of gallbladder. lost 15 kilos (35 pounds) either because of that or because the meds i was on make food taste likje ash. i was then tested and found i had vitamin D deficiency, which the doctor didnt even want to test me for because it shouldnt be possible in australia. but i read about it here and i did and i'm glad i made her do it.
i had a colonoscopy, nothing. had an endoscopy, nothing.
bowel pain started to get worse and when i finally got up the courage to ask about whats coming out when going to the toilet the doc said haemorrhoids. i was a little taken back because it didnt sound like it at all. i questioned her and she assured me. got referred to a general surgeon, didnt even do an exam, and just dismissed it, probably cos he couldnt see any haemerrhoids..
pain still bad so went to another doc, she assured me it was haemerrhoids also, even did an exam (even though she couldnt feel any!!) and assured me again it couldnt possibly be anything else. i came back again, TOLD HER i dont think its haemerrhoids and she just told me to take laxatives, which made it worse. i came back again, cried through frustration, and she finally referred me to another surgeon.
so finally he very simply diagnoses a prolapsed bowel (which i knew it was from pictures online) and gave me laxatives that actually worked. simple as that. vitamin and iron supplements, metamucil and laxatives and i feel better after 5 days.