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    Old 10-29-2004, 10:00 AM   #1
    sfericwaves
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    hemorrhoid? fissure? a long post

    in may this year, i was hospitalized for an oral herpes outbreak. yes, i have a very severe reaction to herpes. during this outbreak, i contracted staph and urinary tract infections, all of my mucosal areas were inflamed and i couldn't eat for days due to severe ulceration and blistering of the outside and inside of my mouth including tongue. my arms, legs and chest were covered in petechiae, tiny red dots that are hemorrhages of small capillaries. about 16 hours after the outbreak started, my hands and feet became red and largely swollen. the swollen red hands & feet and urinary tract infection were new to this outbreak, all other symptoms i've gotten with every outbreak of herpes.

    a general antibiotic was given to me and cleared up the swelling, another one was given for the uti. the doctors suspected there was an underlying cause, hiv or an autoimmune disorder. i saw general docs, oral specialists and dermatologists, had a ton of blood drawn for tests and after a month, well after everything had cleared back up, i had my diagnosis: no hiv, no autoimmune disorder, you are fine and just have a strong reaction to the herpes virus and we've seen it before.
    meanwhile, the antibiotic i was given for the swelling and staph infection had wiped out my good colon bacteria and i picked up a c. difficile infection (bacteria that causes extreme diarrhea and colon inflammation, for anyone who doesn't know). i was given yet another antibiotic to take care of the c. difficile, and it cleared up.

    all was fine until the end of july. i developed a quickly expanding mass on my neck which was diagnosed as a branchial cleft cyst. i've had 2 more courses of antibiotics since then for infections in the cyst, which have knocked it back down to being barely visible. another of these antibiotics was an all over one that would've wiped out that colon bacteria again. i'm currently awaiting the start of my health insurance so they will schedule me for surgery to have it removed.

    in the meantime, i've been having bouts of constipation in varying degrees during the past couple of months, and occasional green stools over several months, which i assume to be related to all of this antibiotic taking. about a month ago, i had a bit of pain a couple of times when i went, and then about 3 weeks ago, i was having an episode of constipation and felt like something just ripped open. i checked the tp and there were spots of blood! and that was it, i couldn't go after that pain. mentally, i knew i had to have a bowel movement, but as soon as it started hurting, almost uncontrollably everything would just suck back up inside me. finally, after 2 days of much water drinking and walking, i was able to go, but in smashing pain. since then i have upped my water intake and started eating handfuls of high fiber cereals throughout the days. unfortunately some days i don't get around to eating the cereal or eating enough of it and some days i am just not digging the water and want soda instead. almost every bowel movement i've had since then has hurt in varying degrees, i've had more without blood than with, but i am still seeing the blood sometimes. my anal area is itchy. it's sensitive to the touch for a while after a painful movement, but looks & feels ok other than that. i have problems getting my bowel movements out now because my muscles tend to suck the stool back in when it starts hurting. i had more constipation again 5 days ago and took a laxative this time, some m.o.m.. when it came out, it was the worst of the pain i've experienced due to this problem, and the largest stool i think i've ever had, this thing was a green monster! stool since then has been regular timing, no efforts to get it out, first was really loose and left a burning sensation, next couple were soft and didn't hurt at all. since then, there has been more and more pain, and today i bled again, this time with a stripe of blood on the stool as well. this is also the first stool i've had since the recent constipation that WASN'T green. so obviously, after taking the laxative, my stools were soft enough that i didn't hurt, but this is only the second time in my life that i've had to take a laxative, and i'd like to keep it that way. i need to figure out how to consistently produce that soft stool naturally and either solve the problem or keep this beast at bay until my insurance kicks in and i can see a doc about it. so here are my questions:

    what does this sound like, a hemorrhoid, a fissure, something else?

    what are my other options for fiber intake and pros or cons to these alternatives over eating it in cereals?

    are there other dietary changes i need to make?

    are hemorrhoids, fissures and the like diagnosable by general practitioners or will i need to see a specialist?

    does anyone know how long it takes your good colon bacteria to come back and also any foods, etc that might help that along?

    should i look into any otc ointments?

    since i seem to be prone to infections this year, are infections something to worry about with these types of conditions and if so, how best to ward them off?

    and any other suggestions for keeping my colon healthy and happy.

    thanks in advance for any replies.

     
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    Old 10-29-2004, 11:56 AM   #2
    chigs489
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    Re: hemorrhoid? fissure? a long post

    Antibiotics can cause gastro-intestinal issues for sure. I had a bunchof them earlier this year, and now I'm dealing with fissures (although I've been prone to these for most of my life -I'm just to "tight" down there I guess).

    If it is bright blood on the tp, or on the stool, it is most likely a fissure. All the constipation and diarhea caused it.

    Yes, a GP will probably be able to see it. Mine did. Although later I went to a specialist and he did a more comprehensive exam and discovered another one (smaller). Ugh. The exam is VERY VERY painful, so unless you are miserable, I would try home remedies.

    Start taking 3-4 Colace (stool softener) a day. Also take 2 servings of Metamucil and watch your diet. No nuts or corn! Eat lots of salad. Don't strain in the bathroom -that is a big no no for me, I'm miserable afterwards. Take warm baths with Epson salts.

    Try this for a month or so. If it is still a problem, go get "the exam", and afterwards, the urologist will give you a prescription of some kind. I got Diltiazam, which seems to be helping, although I've only been on it a couple days.

     
    Old 10-29-2004, 01:57 PM   #3
    lbp35
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    Re: hemorrhoid? fissure? a long post

    You can also get a exam under aneshesia, I had to because I just had hemmorhoid surgery when the doc checked me for the fissure. He said he wouldn't do it without because I would be in too much pain. It does sound like a fissure. If you can't get rid of it on your own by diet I would see a colorectal surgeon, they are more experienced in this.

     
    Old 10-30-2004, 08:15 AM   #4
    sfericwaves
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    Re: hemorrhoid? fissure? a long post

    yeah it is bright blood. i will definitely try some of your suggestions, thanks a lot

     
    Old 10-30-2004, 10:45 PM   #5
    Harry
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    Re: hemorrhoid? fissure? a long post

    I agree with chiggins!!
    Also, to have normal/regular BMs you have to intake 25 to 35 grams of fiber daily. It needs to be balanced between soluble and insoluble fiber. I am a big believer in taking Psyllium the active water soluble fiber in Metamucil but I use Equate from Wal Mart. It seems a little courser, it's cheaper and a rounded teaspoon has about 1/3 more psyllium in it. Prunes are also a good source of fiber ---
    Your stool needs to be kept somewhat soft so you don't get hemorrhoids or a fissure-- Never allow yourself to get constipated -- it is the biggest cause of roids and fissures!!

    With all the antibiotic that you've had -- they could very readily upset the balance of friendly intestinal bacteria and it may need to be re-balance it with friendly bacteria in yogurt and probiotic supplement that contains live active cultures.

    Some people have strong constitutions and have no problem with antibiotics but the side effects that is listed on every antibiotic is that it can cause overgrowth of other unfriendly bacteri/yeast and cause diarrhea as well as constipation.

    God Bless---Harry

    Last edited by Harry; 10-30-2004 at 10:48 PM. Reason: Typos

     
    Old 10-31-2004, 01:26 AM   #6
    sfericwaves
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    Re: hemorrhoid? fissure? a long post

    thank you for your messages. i went out today and got some equate fiber drink mix, docusate sodium, some epsom salt and also a bottle of acidophilus supplement (i'm really excited about that one!). i noticed on the box of epsom salt, it directs to add two cups per gallon water. i think the amount in the box i got might just be about two cups worth, and it was the only size i saw there. is that the same ratio i should use when doing the bath?
    if the answer is yes, my next questions are:
    how important is the salt bath? how often does it need to be done? would a non-salt bath or under salted bath still help?

    i was a little surprised that the fiber drink only contains 12% of the dietary fiber you need in a dose. you guys might be interested in this cereal i've been eating, it's kellogg's all bran, 1/3 cup of it contains 13g dietary fiber, 3g soluble fiber and 10g insoluble fiber. it's not that good tasting, but i think it's a little better than the drink. i am going to try and keep eating the cereal and also do the drink but maybe only 1 a day since the cereal has so much fiber in it. what do you guys think? also, is it possible to get too much fiber? i don't really know much about foods (which might also tell you that i don't have a great diet) so other than breads, i don't really know what other foods i might be getting fiber from.
    anyway, thanks again.

     
    Old 11-01-2004, 04:50 PM   #7
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    Re: hemorrhoid? fissure? a long post

    I would also recommend some flax seed capsules which contain omega-3 oil or some kind of fish oil capsules. This will add some lubrication to the bowels. My daughter has had problems with constipation and I started giving her this and it works very well.

    If you have a fissure the all bran might be too harsh.
    Get your fiber from fruits and veggies.

    Last edited by Rolex; 11-01-2004 at 04:52 PM.

     
    Old 11-02-2004, 04:50 AM   #8
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    Re: hemorrhoid? fissure? a long post

    Oh yea, flax seed, that's a good one. I used that too!

     
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