Discussions By Condition: Medical Stories

five years of pain in upper right abdomen

Posted In: Medical Stories 8 Replies
  • Posted By: Anonymous
  • January 30, 2009
  • 08:56 AM

i was wondering if anybody could help me unravel this medical mystery...

my symptoms started 5 years ago - a couple of months after i moved to japan to teach english... it happened overnight - one day i was fine and the next i woke up with severe yellow-ish diarrhea which was immediately joined by a throbbing pain in the upper right abdomen - directly beneath my rib bone. The pain was fairly constant throughout the day and felt a bit like a cigarette burn inside. It decreased slightly for an hour or so after meals but came throbbing back again after. It was accompanied by a whole body feeling of malaise... i was nauseous, my head was hot and cloudy - i found it hard to concentrate and i flushed hot and cold thorougout the day. My eyes also became sensitive to bright light, and i was drained and exhausted. Around five or six o'clock the symptoms abated slightly.
This pattern then repeated day after day after day. The doctors there told me IBS and i resigned myself to it for the first couple of quite miserable years.
The best i could do at that time was food elimination trying to control symptoms - and this helped a bit here and there - but the condition would often still mysteriously trigger and then last again for days.
Now, this has been going on for more than five years. It controls my life. I am always exhausted by it, especially from trying to find a solution. Doctors have found and eradicated Pylori to no avail. I have had a gastrosopy which revealed no ulcer nor abnormality. I have had ultrasound which found nothing wrong with my gallbladder or liver, but did find a slight (perhaps irrelevant) enlargement of the spleen.

my latest belief is that it has something to do with my gallbladder or maybe liver as this is precisely where the pain comes from and the yellowish darrhea... but....
it seems that doctors have about reachhed the end of their ideas...

and so i wondered if anybody might be able to help me?' or have some ideas - needless to say i would be really grateful
thanks - ross

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8 Replies:

  • Hey,have your doctors checked out your blood work?Hopefully they have,that should have been the first thing ,anyway a complete blood count should let you know if its your liver or anything else.But if they have done that,hang in there and keep reading up on things,there are alot of good vitamins you can try that are safe,check out iherb.com,they have decent prices and alot of info on each,things like SAMe or milk thistle for the liver to help it clean and protect,just trying to give you some help,hope you get better.
    shortstack 22 Replies
    • January 30, 2009
    • 05:34 PM
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  • Oh,if you decide to order from iherb.com you can get five dollars off your first order by entering this code at the end of your order{ LOV195},every little bit helps,if anyone else wants to use the code number on a order they are more than welcome,iherb carries alot of good stuff,the Jarrows brand vitamins are the best,my wife and i order from them monthly,we get the sublingual b-12 tablets,and b-right,vitamin d-3 and a few other items,my wife is getting better every day,we had to take this route because the doctors were not going in the right direction,to word it nicely.Anyway,take care and let us know how you make out,i will keep an eye out for you.Get well soon..
    shortstack 22 Replies
    • January 30, 2009
    • 06:20 PM
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  • hiya thanks for that - yes full blood work - no evidence of liver/gall bladder inflammation - also no visible yellowing of skin/eyes does this completely rule out HepB or some kind of biliaryduct problem?anybody know? :)
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • January 31, 2009
    • 11:37 AM
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  • also one year AFTER the start of the symptoms i developed some very severe acid reflux- i control this now with constantly taking omeprazole...
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • February 1, 2009
    • 00:25 PM
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  • In the absence of the characteristic underlying causes for pain in the URQ, together with a change in bowel habits and a considerable life-changing event, ie relocation to Japan, then the diagnosis of exclusion would be IBS. You might try having your doctors take this from a different approach and since stressors and or anxiety are often associated with IBS, request a trial of an anxiolytic such as chlorazopate dipotassium, brand name Tranxene, 10mg b.i.d. It takes about 10 days for this drug to reach steady-state plasma levels so relief and change in symptomatology should be expected to begin taking place following the 10-day period. The color of your stool may only be coincidentally related and in most cases, the ingestion of dairy products like milk can cause blonde-colored stool and even diarrhea in lactose-intolerant individuals. I would not consider the stool change to represent an underlying problem with your gall bladder or liver at this point. The fact that you've also been experiencing intermittent symptoms for 5 years would rather strongly argue against these disorders since progression is common to the extent that aggressive intervention is required. Speak with your physician about the use of an anxiolytic like Tranxene to determine whether a corresponding reduction in GI symptoms can be observed. Best regards, J Cottle, MD
    JCottleMD 580 Replies
    • February 1, 2009
    • 02:36 PM
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  • thanks so much for your response...i was initially inclined to believe the IBS diagnosis... i had not only relocated to japan away from all friends and family but there were other issues as well that were certainly adding to my underlying level of emotional stress...but in the end i thought that my mixture of symptoms were quite untypical of IBS... especially the specific pain high up in my abdomen and the feverish nature of the condition when it onset...what do you think of the possibility of dysfuntion of the sphincter of Oddi? This spasming could have the same kinds of causes as IBS I imagine?incidentally throughout the sickness i have tried many exclusion diets including avoiding gluten and lactose for long periods of time without any effect on the pain or the diarrhea...thanks again,Ross
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • February 2, 2009
    • 06:48 PM
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  • I also have had the same problem with abdominal pain, and I have had symptoms for 2 years. At first a doctor told me that I had gastritis some sort of imflamation of my stomach, but they gave me no explaination to why I had this, or how they could treat it. It took 2 years worth of tests to my stomach, gallbladder, and intestines to find out I have a condition called Gastroparesis. It is where your body does not digest your food properly and as fast as it should. You may want to get a gastric emptying exam to see if you have this condition as well. The bad news is this Condition is commonly related to diabetes even though they have not tried to test me for diabetes The drug they have tried to give me is called metoclopamide, which has received a strong FDA warning about the severity of the side effects including ones that are perminate and irreversible. I right away experienced severe side effects in the first three days of taking this drug and the doctor claims there is no other prescription to treat my condition. I am at my wits end.=========================================DON't FOrGET TO SAY THANKS IF YOU LIKE MY POST!!!Messages
    jasica 1 Replies Flag this Response
  • I've had the same thing for the last 4-5 years. Have your dr's done a HIDA scan? This is a test to show how well the gallbladder works. You might have a non-functioning gallbladder, which would cause the same pain with or without gall stones. also, if you haven't had a recent u/s ask for another one. Good luck!
    Anonymous 42789 Replies Flag this Response
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