for those of you with rotten burps, vomitting, diarrhea...READ THIS
For almost 4 years I suffered from similar symptoms – horrible smelling burps (smelled like feces), vomiting, and diarrhea. It used to only happen about once a month. Then all of a sudden it was happening every single day. I went about a month and a half not being able to keep anything down. I went to doctor after doctor trying to figure out what was wrong…I kept hearing the same thing: acid reflux…or they’d tell me that because I had esophogitis (which was discovered during an endoscopy/colonoscopy) it was causing those symptoms. It was frustrating to go to one doctors office and have 2 nurse practitioners telling me 2 different things during the same visit. One said that esophogitis could cause those symptoms and the other didn’t agree. So finally after going to all sorts of doctors in my town, having 3 ultrasounds, a hida-scan, a colonoscopy/endoscopy, blood work, stool samples taken…my family doctor finally referred me to a University Hospital. I had begun to lose hope. When the symptoms got worse, another one was added – HORRIBLE pain in my upper abdomen. I ended up in the ER one day because the pain was so bad and the doctor asked me “well, what do you want ME to do about it?” I thought that I would have to put up with this for the rest of my life. I didn’t have much hope for the doctor at the University hospital to find what was wrong, but thankfully, I went. This doctor was amazing. He had read my case history, and had some ideas of tests he wanted to try on after my first visit. One was a gastric emptying study – this is where you eat an egg with radioactive stuff in it to see how fast your stomach empties. This test found that I digest food just at the cut off of being too slow (I digest 50% of my food in 2 hrs.). Then he did a breath test – this is where you drink a NASTY sweet solution and blow into a bag every 15 min. to test 2 gasses in your breath, one of them being methane. The third procedure was another endoscopy, just to rule it out as a possibility for my symptoms. After doing these tests, my doctor discovered that I had bacterial overgrowth – those nasty fecal smelling burps – methane… Bacterial overgrowth happens in the small intestine, and can be treated with antibiotics…I have been symptom free for over a month now. So to everyone who has been struggling to find a diagnosis for this awful problem my number one recommendation is to go to a University hospital where doctors are more experienced in handling abnormal cases – and where they actually do their “homework” on their patients before they even see them.