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    Old 12-26-2000, 09:49 AM   #1
    cmillar's Avatar
    Join Date: Dec 2000
    Location: Bloomfield Hills, MI, USA
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    cmillar HB User
    Post Abdominal distension and lots more...

    I've been struggling with a cornucopia of symptoms I hope someone here can
    help me make some sense of.

    I'm a 25 year old male, and up until my symptoms began a year ago I'd always
    been very healthy. In fact, for the 2 years leading up to the onset of my
    symptoms I was engaged in a very rigorous excercise program involving heavy
    weight training with an epmhasis on building mass, coupled with moderate
    cardio routines.

    As a result of my desire to gain weight I would eat quite a bit. I would
    typically eat three large meals per day (eating to the point of physical
    discomfort) and several snack-sized meals as well. I have always been
    prone to having an irritable stomach with bouts of heartburn and diarrhea.

    Over the course of several months I would notice that after a particularly
    large meal I would feel a great deal of discomfort in my abdomen while in
    a sitting position and would feel it very difficult to obtain a full and
    satisfying breath. About February of 2000 I got to the point where I
    constantly felt the inability to take a deep breath and then started feeling
    palpitations and irregular heart beats throughout the day.

    I was initially diagnosed with simple GERD and put on Aciphex and then Prevacid.
    Neither seemed to reduce my symptoms. I had a chest X-ray taken (clear), two
    full sets of Pulmonary Function Tests to check for asthma (both negative) and
    an EKG taken at the emergency room after a very bad episode. The EKG showed
    evidence of PVCs and I was sent for a full Stress-Echo (which was completely
    normal). The doctors then chalked it up to anxiety and put me on Effexor.

    The Effexor did make me relax over the seriousness of my symptoms but did nothing
    to alleviate the sypmtoms themselves. I went through a 6 month period of taking
    the drug and have been off it for 2 months - and feel better now than when I was
    on it.

    At this point I still have vague chest pains, noticable skipped heart beats,
    and the feeling that I cannot take a deep breath. However, I've also
    begun having a great deal of gas, abdominal pain and abdominal distension.
    It is worst at night, where I will belch almost constantly before going to bed
    and even after small meals I will feel very full and have an extremely
    distended stomach. Over the course of 6 weeks my stomach below the navel
    has distended to the point that most of my pants do not all. Also
    I feel very uncomfortable while lying down or sitting and often get the
    sensation that something is pressing up against the bottom of my ribcage in
    a very uncomfortable fashion. Finally, it seems as though I can feel
    my heartbeat in various parts of my body: chest, stomach, neck, fingertips, etc.
    In fact, if reclining and resting a book on my stomach the book will noticably
    bounce up and down.

    This has been a nightmarish episode in my life...I've missed work, changed jobs
    to alleviate stress and done just about everything else I can think of. I will
    be going to a GI specialist within the next few weeks to get checked out again
    but was hoping someone here could help make some sense of all of these
    crazy symptoms.

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    Old 12-27-2000, 01:45 AM   #2
    fionanz's Avatar
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    Location: new zealand
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    ask your doctor to check you for a hiatal hernia,
    i had similar problems to you, nearly nine months later after being told i had a lot of other things, they now tell me thats what i have, and i'm waiting for them to put the camera down to have a look.
    lifting heavy weights can sometimes cause them, but because they usually occur in people over 50 who are overweight and smokers, some doctors dont check for them.
    try a wed page [url="http://onhealth.*****.com"]http://onhealth.*****.com[/url]
    click diseases & conditions, then find the gastrointestinal center, copy some things off and take them to your doctor, good luck.

    [This message has been edited by moderator1 (edited 12-28-2000).]

    Old 12-27-2000, 07:03 AM   #3
    cmillar's Avatar
    Join Date: Dec 2000
    Location: Bloomfield Hills, MI, USA
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    cmillar HB User

    Thanks a million for the links and information.

    I had brought up this possibility to a doctor at the very beginning and he dismissed it immediately saying it would have shown up on my chest X-Ray.

    However, it appears a simple chest X-Ray (where the examiner was looking for simple pneumonia) does not suffice for this sort of a diagnosis, and a barium swallow is required.

    I'll make sure to pursue this during my upcoming visit(s).

    Old 12-27-2000, 09:42 AM   #4
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    Location: Petersburg, IN, USA
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    KimberlyV HB User

    Hi there! Just let me say that you sound almost exactly like I was just a few weeks ago. For about 2 years I suffered with alot of the same problems you are having. Finally after ruling out alot of diseases such as Reflux, GERD, etc, my dr had me go for an ultrasound of my gallbladder. Sure enough, I was full of gallstones. Last Tuesday, I have my gall bladder removed and can already feel the relief. I did develop stomach flu over Christmas, so I am not totally recovered from the symptoms I had before the surgery. Has your dr discussed possible gall stones at all? The big thing that said it all for me was pain in my chest, going into my back and just below my ribcage on my right side. Maybe you should have your dr look into you possibly having an inflammed gall bladder if he/she hasn't already. Hope this helps.
    Let us know how things go.

    Old 01-03-2001, 03:57 PM   #5
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    I came to this site hoping to find someone with symptoms similar to mine. Given the unique nature of my condition, I didn't expect to find anyone. Amazingly, there is considerable overlap in our symptoms. I am a 27 year old male and have had strange gastro-intestinal behavior for the past 3 years. I too have bloating, extreme gas (belching), shortness of breath, and heart palpitations. The breathing problems and palpitations seem to occur together, but not necessarily with the gas and bloating. I also get itchy, red eyes and sometimes scalp itching. I don't know if it's related to the GI stuff. I will often feel fine until I eat, and then my symptoms occur.

    I have been given lots of drugs like Prevacid and some stuff to treat IBS. None of them do any good. I've had CT scans, ultrasounds, MRIs, tons of blood tests, a sigmoidoscopy, an endoscopy, and the barium swallow test. They are all negative. The only sign that anything is wrong is a stool sample that showed that my levels of beneficial bacteria are low.

    We also have lifestyle similarities. I also use to have problems with diarrhea when I was younger. I was told that I had a nervous stomach, but the problems subsided once I gave up dairy products. I also use to lift weights heavily and was an athlete for many years. When my GI symptoms started about 3 years ago, I began to lose weight. I lost about 30 pounds before I stabilized. That put me at 6'0" tall and 130 pounds. I have managed to get back to 150 and it has been very difficult. I have learned to live an almost normal life with this strange condition, but there are times when it really makes it difficult to function. I wonder if we fit a certain profile that is susceptible to this unusual condition?

    Lately, I have been taking lots of digestive enzymes and beneficial bacteria supplements. The gas and bloating are much better, but certainly not cured. I also must avoid sugar and alcohol to feel well.

    One of my theories based on articles that I've read is that I've possibly damaged my intestinal walls by eating foods (dairy) that I couldn't digest for all those years. In some cases, certain food particles get in to my blood stream, and my immune system turns on itself and attacks the particles, thinking of them as invaders. I don't know if it's coincidence, but a lot of my symptoms are similar to those that would accompany an allergic reaction.

    If anyone has any insight here, I would really appreciate it.

    Old 01-08-2001, 01:37 PM   #6
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    your cornucopia of symptoms sounds alot like what I went through (and am still going through) this past year and now....I had Laproscopic Colestectomy in June 2000...felt a lot better for a month or so after...then I started getting this burning, gas-like pains in my upper stomache and the "runners stitch" like pain near my gallbladder area it couldn't be that though, since I didn't have a gallbladder...I kept popping asprins (big mistake) and alkaseltzers (again, big mistake) to relieve the pain...nothing seemed to help...I just kept getting worse...only putting food in my stomach (depending on what kind, nothing acidic) temporarily relieved the pain..there just seemed to be an 'uncomfortable' gnawing in my stomach and upper right side...finally I couldn't take it any more. I went back to my gallbladder surgeon and told him of my pain....he put me on Aciphex while he sent off labs to later diagnose me with H. Pylori...the Aciphex (though it gave me a headache)...made me feel 75% better more "runners stitch" side cramps..and a lot less stomache/gas-like pains..though my stomach still has problems...I go this week to start my "triple theraphy" to eridicate (hopefully) my Pylori....(which I probably got as a result of my GB surgery anyway....

    I know how it feels to be totally frustrated about anything/everything you put in your mouth either having you running to the bathroom or bending over in cramps...keep bugging the docs and letting them know where the pain is....remember, the squeaky wheels get the appropriate treatment (hopefully anyway)

    Take care and hang in there.

    Old 02-11-2001, 12:48 AM   #7
    Join Date: Feb 2001
    Location: Riverside, California, USA
    Posts: 79
    krisyd HB User

    Hi! your symptoms sound like possible candida colonization in the intestinal tract. These critters live all over but when they over populate, they cause nothing but problems. My son and my husband both have an overgrowth of candida. I would have to advise you to look up the Great plains laboratory on the internet and call Dr. Shaw, he will give you a free consultation over the phone. His research lab does tests for yeasts, bacterias, and inborn errors of matabolism as well as many other tests.I wish you the best. kris

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