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Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) Message Board
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Old 08-10-2007, 05:46 PM   #1
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Dose of Culturelle or Enzymatic pearls for IBS???

My IBS has gotten worse recently. I've been under lots of stress and was given an antibiotic by IV in the hospital. My IBS is the alternating kind. I've tried the Enzymatic pearls once or twice a day and they did nothing for my stomach. I've also taken Culturelle once a day. Would I need to take more than one a day to get any relief?? I get some relief from peppermint pills and/or tea but I have GERD so I have to watch my consumption of peppermint. I take Prilosec OTC for acid reflux and it works for me. I ordered some samples of Digestive Advantage IBS to try. I've been keeping a food diary, but can't find a pattern for what's causing my IBS. I drink lactaid milk, eat lots of fiber, yogurt, drink water, exercise. This is so frustrating. Today, I was on the toilet many times. I don't want to be afraid to leave the house. The other day, I was constipated and felt like my stomach would explode. If I eat too much fiber or not enough, I have stomach problems. There's never a day when my stomach feels OK. Any advice or help would be appreciated. Thanks.

 
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Old 08-22-2007, 07:30 PM   #2
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Re: Dose of Culturelle or Enzymatic pearls for IBS???

Can't anyone give me advice???????????? :-(

 
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Old 08-23-2007, 12:48 AM   #3
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Re: Dose of Culturelle or Enzymatic pearls for IBS???

Hi Sunshine! I'm afraid I'm not familiar with Culturelle or Enzymatic pearls. I have taken digestive enzymes but have had no success with them. Like you, I never have a day that is pain free and suffer also with alternating IBS. Usually I experience most of the pain and discomfort during the day and often the only relief comes with D after I eat and continuing into the evening. Like you, there is no clear culprit with regard to diet although some things are surely no-no's always. I also take Prilosec for acid reflux and I do sometimes wonder if this has contributed to my overall digestive dysfunction but I have no real proof to back up my suspicion. I do know I've been on this medication for quite some time and that it has been suggested that long term use is probably not a good idea. It's just an idea I've been knocking around.

For me, I've had to accept that my IBS is so severe (and has been for years) that I do have to take it into account when I plan my activities. It's a drag and I wish it weren't so, but I've learned that I do much better if I put my health first and don't pressure myself about things I just can't do. I have also learned to take one day at a time and if I do have a good day, I cram as much activity into it as I humanly can. Because I've been living with this for so long, everyone in my life knows the deal. I've found it's best to just be honest with people, whether they completely understand or not. This way, if I have to beg off an invitation or cancel an appointment, everyone understands. It relieves alot of stress for me.

In terms of symptoms, I use a heating pad for pain and spasm. Many folks find relief with the teas but they don't seem to help me much. I have not had much success with the Digestive Advantage because it seems to push me into C mode and that's something I lean toward anyway and don't need any more help with! I was also taught belly massage which I find extremely helpful for relieving trapped gas and stimulating movement.

You mentioned that you had recently had an IV antibiotic treatment. It is possible that this has kicked off a flare up for you. Antibiotics are notorious for stripping the intestines of good bacteria. You might find probiotics helpful for awhile.

Hope this helps! Good luck!

 
Old 08-23-2007, 05:47 PM   #4
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Cool Re: Dose of Culturelle or Enzymatic pearls for IBS???

Hi Bellyblues: Thanks for responding. Yes, sometimes the D. helps get rid of the abdominal pain. Today, I'm back to feeling constipated again. Since I had to leave the house today for my Acup. appt., I used a suppository this am so I wouldn't have a stomachache driving there or back or during the Acup. session. I remember my mother always having abdominal pain and constipation or diarrhea. She took Lomotil and Donnatol. I've heard the same thing about taking PPI'S longterm. I used to take Pepcid AC, but I got tired of taking so many of them everyday.

Anytime my husband and I are supposed to fly someplace or do a long drive, I get anxious and worry that I'll have a diarrhea attack. When I think back on things, I'm amazed I flew to Europe twice. But, I'm sure I took multiple doses of Imodium so I wouldn't have to use the plane's bathroom a lot.

The heatingpad is getting good use in my house too. I hate the taste of that fennel tea and won't reorder it. Also, I think the peppermint plus pills work just as well if not better than the fennel/ginger/peppermint pills I ordered online. The thought of taking the Citrucel powder again makes me want to gag. The first time I used it, I put a whole scoopful of that stuff in water and it gave me diarrhea. I should have started more gradually. The next time I used it, I put half a scoopful in and drank it and it didn't seem to be enough. I'm not a patient person and I just want to find the right dose and get some relief.

I was only in the hospital for a couple hours having a Lithtripsy, so the IV antibiotics only happened the one time. Do you think that was enough to cause an IBS flare? I know that my anxiety played a role in my problems too.

Since I have some more Acidophilus pearls here, I'll use them up and then try the Culturelle more than once a day and see what happens.

Thanks again and I hope you had as good a day as possible.

 
Old 08-23-2007, 10:09 PM   #5
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Wink Re: Dose of Culturelle or Enzymatic pearls for IBS???

You know, I really do think that even one dosage on antibiotic can really wreak havoc with the gut. It's the first question a naturopathic doc will ask when you speak with them: "have you taken any antibiotics recently?" I guess it would stand to reason that if you were doing okay before the antibiotics and there has been no other big change in your life (not counting stress because that's a daily thing!), I would have to assume that it at least contributed to your flare up.

For me, as someone who suffers with primarily C, taking OTC fiber supplements is a big no-no. I had been taking them for years and years: Metamucil, Citrucel, Fiber-Sure, etc. By the time I landed in the GI's office this last time, I had myself a nice little colon impaction! The doc told me that when you are constipated, adding more harsh insoluble fiber into the system will only make it worse. Because this type of fiber absorbs so much liquid from the colon, it can actually add to the C condition. And when you are FOS , the colon can't move all it's contents on it's own. I don't take supplements anymore. I get my combination of soluble and insoluble fiber from food.

BTW: I actually had a great day today and thought about this thread! It's the first nearly pain free day in, well, I can't remember how long!

 
Old 08-24-2007, 06:05 PM   #6
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Re: Dose of Culturelle or Enzymatic pearls for IBS???

I'm glad you're feeling better today. I, on the other hand had bad diarrhea today. Everytime I eat anything, I get abdominal pain and have to go to the bathroom. It's already a month since I had the IV antibiotic. But, I'm so delicate that anything is possible. That's awful about the fiber supplements. All I ever hear is to take fiber supplements for IBS. I'm so "cleaned out" today that I feel like I won't have to go to the bathroom for a week. I wish!!! I had abdominal pain before the runs today. I've also been nervous worrying about everything. Anyway, I hope you continue to have painfree days!!!!!!

 
Old 08-24-2007, 11:45 PM   #7
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Re: Dose of Culturelle or Enzymatic pearls for IBS???

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Originally Posted by sunshine123 View Post
I'm glad you're feeling better today. I, on the other hand had bad diarrhea today. Everytime I eat anything, I get abdominal pain and have to go to the bathroom. It's already a month since I had the IV antibiotic. But, I'm so delicate that anything is possible. That's awful about the fiber supplements. All I ever hear is to take fiber supplements for IBS. I'm so "cleaned out" today that I feel like I won't have to go to the bathroom for a week. I wish!!! I had abdominal pain before the runs today. I've also been nervous worrying about everything. Anyway, I hope you continue to have painfree days!!!!!!
That's me to a T. Eat=sick. This is why I only eat once a day. If I eat during the work day, I will be stuck in the loo for hours or in terrible pain. While there is still a great deal of discomfort, gas, bloating and pain even without eating, once food passes into my system all bets are off and virutally anything can happen. For me, it's best I plan my meal around when I can be close to or at home.

I really do think fiber is essential but for me, the OTC stuff just doesn't work. Some of the foods that really get things moving in the least aggressive manner are barley, winter squash, yams, oat bran, oatmeal, and brown rice in small amounts. Fiber the way nature intended is always better in my opinion!

 
Old 08-25-2007, 12:22 AM   #8
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Re: Dose of Culturelle or Enzymatic pearls for IBS???

I like yams, oatmeal and brown rice too. I hate having to worry about getting stomach pain and/or diarrhea when I'm not home. It's so lovely getting older and having more pain and health problems. Are you able to eat frozen yogurt? I've been eating it lately and maybe that's one thing at least that's giving me problems. I purposely ate it for dessert tonight to see if I have diarrhea again tomorrow am. I'd much prefer getting my fiber from food too. I hope we both have an enjoyable weekend!!!!!

 
Old 08-25-2007, 11:55 PM   #9
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Re: Dose of Culturelle or Enzymatic pearls for IBS???

Quote:
Originally Posted by sunshine123 View Post
I like yams, oatmeal and brown rice too. I hate having to worry about getting stomach pain and/or diarrhea when I'm not home. It's so lovely getting older and having more pain and health problems. Are you able to eat frozen yogurt? I've been eating it lately and maybe that's one thing at least that's giving me problems. I purposely ate it for dessert tonight to see if I have diarrhea again tomorrow am. I'd much prefer getting my fiber from food too. I hope we both have an enjoyable weekend!!!!!
Yogurt is a hit or miss for me. Sometimes it has no effect. Sometimes it will bind me up. In either case, I don't really like it enough to risk getting C so I just stay away from it.

I know what you mean about worrying. Even after all these years of dealing with IBS, I still get very anxious when I plan an event that will keep me out of the house (and my comfort zone) for more than an hour or two. And engaging in social activites while you are experiencing stomach distress is no fun at all, in my opinion. I have to really force myself to overcome my worry or else I fear I will end up a hermit!

I don't know how crippling your worry is, but I had great success taking anti-anxiety meds for a bit of time. If you don't have any problems with addiction, you might want to try a prescription for one of these drugs as they really help diminish or, in some cases, eliminate the anxiety we IBS'ers live with!

 
Old 08-26-2007, 09:47 AM   #10
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Re: Dose of Culturelle or Enzymatic pearls for IBS???

I didn't have any problems yesterday and I slept late. I know there was a post about people not having problems when they slept late. The same is true for me. So far today, so good. I take a low dose Xanax before bed and sometimes one in the am. I have visions of taking a flight and being stuck on the tarmac for many hours and having to go to the bathroom. I get more neurotic each year. lol.

 
Old 08-26-2007, 11:14 AM   #11
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Re: Dose of Culturelle or Enzymatic pearls for IBS???

Quote:
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I didn't have any problems yesterday and I slept late. I know there was a post about people not having problems when they slept late. The same is true for me. So far today, so good. I take a low dose Xanax before bed and sometimes one in the am. I have visions of taking a flight and being stuck on the tarmac for many hours and having to go to the bathroom. I get more neurotic each year. lol.

I feel ya, sister! I have to fly in October and I am already completely freaked out about it! I've been avoiding making the reservations - I'm in denial. It's a long flight with one stop that almost always ends up with a missed or very late connection. I am looking at a 10 hour day (without delays!) in airports and planes.

With the recent spate of flights being held on the tarmac and the horror stories I've heard on the news about bathrooms overflowing and people not being allowed to leave their seats, I am inclined to take something that will not just relax me but put me out completely! I'd like to go to sleep upon take-off and wake up at landing.

Glad to hear you had a good day. I've been housebound pretty much all weekend. It's great that you have the Xanax available. Do you find it helpful? I know I did.

 
Old 08-27-2007, 12:02 AM   #12
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Re: Dose of Culturelle or Enzymatic pearls for IBS???

Yes, if it weren't for Xanax, I probably wouldn't be leaving the house for long. I hope you won't have problems when you fly. Our upcoming flight will only be one hr., so I should be OK, unless we end up sitting on the tarmac too. I'm sorry you've been housebound this weekend. :-(. Do you have RX meds. to stop or prevent diarrhea?

BTW, Seattle is a beautiful city. We visited there once and I'd love to get back some day.

I hope Monday will be better for you!!!!!

 
Old 08-28-2007, 09:48 AM   #13
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Re: Dose of Culturelle or Enzymatic pearls for IBS???

Thanks for your kind wishes. Yes, this is a breathtaking city. I feel blessed to be surrounded by so much beauty. I just wish I could get out and enjoy it a bit more!

I won't take anything to prevent D because I tend toward C mostly. When I do have D (usually once or twice a week) it is a Godsend and I really don't mind sacrificing a day to the toilet because the relief of finally being "empty" is such a wonderous and rare thing.

I don't take any meds. I do take a chinese herbal supplement that I get from a clinic I went to for colon hydrotherapy treatments. It's probably the best thing I've ever had for keeping the system moving. My experience with pharmacueticals has been awful so I have no faith in what the doc has to offer.

I am going to try a new naturopath next week and am hoping there might be some options I have not yet explored. Trying to keep an open mind!!!

 
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