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Sjögren's Syndrome Message Board
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Old 12-30-2009, 05:23 AM   #1
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dolby HB User
Constipation and Sjogren's Syndrome

I've been suffering from constipation for about a year. My constipation is mostly due to lack of moisture in the colon, not due to the hardness of my stool. Before testing positive for Antinuclear Antibodies Direct for Sjogren's Syndrome (SS-B), I thought my constipation was perhaps due to my diabetes.

Now I realize it could be due to SS. I only have a very dry mouth at this stage. And this occurrence is rathe recent (last month or two). My eyes are not dry yet. I have very dry, scaly skin, especially my feet and hands, which I always thought was due to T2 diabetes.

If you have constipation and SS, how do you treat it? I've been treating it with Milk of Magnesia (1 tbsp/day). But this is not designed for long-term use. I've also been taking magnesium supplememnts (500mg/day), thinking that it's perhaps my magnefisum deficiency (never confirmed) that's taking the moisture out of my colon. So far it's been working but I'm worred about the long-term consequences of taking it. Fiber and increased water never worked for me; actually it made constipation worse! MiraLax also never worked. Colace somewhat when combined with MoM.

If you suffer from SS and have constipation, I'm interested in your method of treatment. I have an appointment with a rheumy next week. Hopefully, this one understands SS.

 
Old 01-03-2010, 09:29 PM   #2
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Lindaru HB User
Re: Constipation and Sjogren's Syndrome

Hi, Dolby . . . while I have not been diagnosed with it, I suspect that at the age of 53 and being female, and after seeing an episode of "Mystery Diagnosis" of someone who has it, that I may very well have it, too, but have never been tested.

I, too, get the constipation. I have found that natural magnesium (such as found in cashews), combined with potassium (found in bananas and potatoes) helps to alleviate it when I start getting a bout of it.

Cashews and potatoes are also high in natural fiber. If you have diabetes, you need to be aware that some fiber supplements and especially the fiber rich yogurts contain phenylalanine which is very bad for messing with blood sugar.

It will still be important to keep your fluid intake up. This will help postpone later effects of synovial fluid depletion which can manifest as arthritis.

Another suggestion I can make to you is probiotics. They are the regulators that help with digestion in the small intestine. If the fluid is getting processed with the food properly there, it will make for better elimination from the large intestine.

I recommend the ones that contain the lactobacillus acidophilus, regularus, bifidus, bulgaris and such. Most of these do not contain unnatural additives and can be found in the grocery store either in pill supplement, a yogurt or a yogurt drink.

My sincere hope that your rheumatologist has a good understanding of your situation and can help you even further.

Lindaru

 
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Old 02-09-2010, 07:14 AM   #3
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Re: Constipation and Sjogren's Syndrome

Hi Dolby. I too have sjogrens and I can have TERRIBLE constipation. I also have Lupus and I am on opiates which can make the bowels sluggish.

I saw my gastrointerologist about 4 wks. ago. He has me drinking 1 glass of prune juice WITH citrucel 2x a day. This really was a miracle for me. Now, I find that I am straightened out, I don't have to have ti 2x a day. I went for my check up last week and my doctor told me that I would figure out just how often taking this would work for me. I am telling you this is a GOOD thing. I really blessed him, because being constipated all of the time is not good for us.
I hope this helps you a little bit. You could give it a try, but if you feel better ask your doctor first.
Madison

 
Old 04-03-2010, 11:57 PM   #4
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Re: Constipation and Sjogren's Syndrome

How much Citrucel do you take with the prune juice? I take meds. that make me very constipated to the point that I get a fecal impaction sometimes and don't want to end up in the hospital from it. Thanks in advance for any info.

 
Old 04-04-2010, 08:41 AM   #5
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sandshore HB User
Re: Constipation and Sjogren's Syndrome

Hi Dolby,

I assume that you have had your TSH tested and are not hypothyroid?
Constipation was my "marker" symptom for hypothyroidism. My system shut down and nothing I tried worked (until I started to take the Levothroid in Feburary).

Now I find the following very helpful: 1 Tablespoon of ground Chia in a glass of iced tea sweetened with Sweet n Low. (I use the Gala Herbs brand which I got from the health food store.)

I mix it with the tea and the not-so-healthy Sweet n Low because I am sensitive about taste. It actually is palatable, but I'm just trying to make it as pleasant as possible.

What I like about Chia is that you only have to take one tablespoon.
Chia is considered a "super food" and has omega-3 and omega 6 EFA's. Some people snack on the chia seeds. Two tablespoons of the brand I use have 6 grams of insoluble fiber and 1 gram of soluble fiber plus various other vitamins and minerals. You can research it via google.

Regarding the Miralax--that is actually a good product to moisten the stool--but it takes several days to work. It is not going to automatically get one's system going. (I don't need to use this now, but the doctor said it's a very safe laxative. What's nice is that it is tasteless and can be mixed with any juice and is easy to get down.)

Good luck, Dolby. I've had a lot of recent experience with this, so I developed some "expertise."

Sandshore

 
Old 06-03-2010, 02:57 PM   #6
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Re: Constipation and Sjogren's Syndrome

HI everyone: I just wanted to say about the constipation issue that you should be eating your "P" fruits - Pears, Pineapple, Prunes, Peaches, etc. Also, beets are a good source to get you moving. You can tell when they've gone through because your stool will be red. Salmon is another good source, and nuts. They've got alot of magnesium in them. The magnesium supplements are good too. Of course you've got to eat your greens too. Salads, spinach, cabbage, etc.

Try to stay away from the BRAT diet - Bananas, rice, apples and toast. That's for if you've got the runs. You'll know when your body has enough magnesium because you'll end up with loose stools. Bananas are a good source of potassium though.

You also need to drink alot of water to keep things moving down there. Don't get dehydrated. Exercise is also a good thing to keep things moving.

 
Old 07-06-2011, 06:16 AM   #7
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cbg10 HB User
Re: Constipation and Sjogren's Syndrome

Quote:
Originally Posted by dolby View Post
I've been suffering from constipation for about a year. My constipation is mostly due to lack of moisture in the colon, not due to the hardness of my stool. Before testing positive for Antinuclear Antibodies Direct for Sjogren's Syndrome (SS-B), I thought my constipation was perhaps due to my diabetes.

Now I realize it could be due to SS. I only have a very dry mouth at this stage. And this occurrence is rathe recent (last month or two). My eyes are not dry yet. I have very dry, scaly skin, especially my feet and hands, which I always thought was due to T2 diabetes.

If you have constipation and SS, how do you treat it? I've been treating it with Milk of Magnesia (1 tbsp/day). But this is not designed for long-term use. I've also been taking magnesium supplememnts (500mg/day), thinking that it's perhaps my magnefisum deficiency (never confirmed) that's taking the moisture out of my colon. So far it's been working but I'm worred about the long-term consequences of taking it. Fiber and increased water never worked for me; actually it made constipation worse! MiraLax also never worked. Colace somewhat when combined with MoM.

If you suffer from SS and have constipation, I'm interested in your method of treatment. I have an appointment with a rheumy next week. Hopefully, this one understands SS.
Hi ........I was amazed to read how many besides myself suffer from gastro problems. To me it is the most frustrating of all my symptoms.The constipation, distension, pain, etc. I have never been able really to figure out what I can do. One time I think something really helped, buy a ton of it and then the next time it doesn't work. My gastroenterologist took tests on all of me from when it enters to when it leaves which took months to do and didn't consider Sjogrens. I finally figured it out myself and then read a book from the foundation that validated what I had found to be the answer. I do find that Miralax works for me and I feel blessed after reading that it doesn't for some. It seems to be the kindest for me. My best to you in figuring out what is going on with your body. I am sure you feel like you are walking a tightrope with two conditions. I also have Celiac Disease so my diet is limited because of that as well as I know yours is. GOOD LUCK !!! cbg

 
Old 07-06-2011, 03:27 PM   #8
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Re: Constipation and Sjogren's Syndrome

I am sorry I never got back to this thread BUT the prune juice and the citricel stopped working! GRRRRRR

I just started trying plumsmart. WELL after a gallon I had 2 small BMS? WTHec????
I am trying to add more fiber. I too have sjogrens and Lupus. I am SO sick of this.
I had a salad today and I increased my water although I am great about getting enough water each day, PLENTY actually....

I HOPE something will start to work for me too. I guess I can get the magnesium. I was going to...changed my mind, but now I have changed it back!! AND for me also, I can tell that it is not always necessarily "hard stools" as much as lack of moisture because one glycerin suppository will get things going and then I can usually just go...FOR THAT ONE TIME

BEST of luck to everyone. This is NO fun for sure!!!!

Madison

 
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