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    Old 04-30-2005, 12:28 PM   #1
    heytoots
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    Question Fear of Flying with IBS

    Hi Everyone,
    I have had IBS since I am 26 (I am now 53)..and I have such a fear that I am going to have an IBS attack while on an airplane. I shudder to think what I would do 35,000 ft up in the air, in a metal tube, with 2 tiny bathrooms in the back, and the beverage cart in the way. I know it sounds funny, but honestly....the week before I have to travel, I start to get a little crazy. I actually give myself enemas and take laxatives two days before so I am totally "empty" before I get on that jet.
    And then...I don't eat on the plane.

    Does anybody else out there have this problem, and if so....any suggestions???? I am pretty okay with getting bad cramps on the ground, as I know there are plenty of bathrooms, but in the air....Oh God.....panic!!!

     
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    Old 04-30-2005, 02:49 PM   #2
    Georgette
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    Re: Fear of Flying with IBS

    I know how you feel. I travelled last year to Europe with one transfer. The first plane was a big one with 10 seats across and two aisles, but the second one was small with six seats and only one aisle. The first flight was fine because there were bathrooms in the middle and at the back of the plane, so even if the beverage cart was out, I could avoid it. The second was a different story - only bathrooms at the back. Needless to say, that was a stressful flight! I am assuming you have IBS-D from your description, so maybe taking a couple Imodium before the flight help you?

    In the fall I am facing a nine-hour flight from South America. Wish me luck!

     
    Old 04-30-2005, 02:59 PM   #3
    heytoots
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    Re: Fear of Flying with IBS

    Hi Georgette,
    Thanks for your response......I have IBS that swings back and forth between Diarrhea and constipation, and usually, if I am constipated, and the cramps kick in, I have these horrendous pains that are so bad that I am doubled over, and I actually think they are worse than childbirth. They can go on for hours and hours, until I finally have a BM, which then in turn goes on for quite a while. It's quite a vicious cycle. That's the reason for the enemas before flying...I am thinking that if there is nothing in there to come out, I won't have cramps. What a terrible way to start a vacation. And.....of course you have to make a return flight back home, so the whole ordeal starts over again.
    I also am flying....Las Vegas in July, so I know it will be a "one aisle plane" and a five hour flight. AARGH!
    You are right about the larger planes, I have less stress on them, knowing there are bathroom in the center, and more of them.
    Good luck, and if you have tips, let me know

    Barbara

     
    Old 04-30-2005, 03:23 PM   #4
    bulletinboard25
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    Re: Fear of Flying with IBS

    Hey.. have you tried going to your doctor and telling him of your extreme anxiety about flying?

    If so, you could request a benzo, like Xanax. They are anti-anxiety meds that I have found to be the best at combatting my IBS symptoms, problem is they are hard to get b/c a lot of people abuse them. I used to get anxiety attacks because of the fear, but once I had a script for Xanax my fears subsided, just knowing that I had them to take... the "what if" I have an IBS episode, "what if" I have an anxiety attack.

    I would go to your doctor and talk to him about these, because truthfully they have been the most beneficial med I have taken for IBS..

    I have taken tofranil, zoloft, lexapro, donnatal, librax, imodium ad, prevacid, nexium, prilosec, and i'm sure there is more.

    I also might add though that when I flew the first time, which was last year, I hadn't taken the Xanax and didn't want to right before my first flight.

    So like you, a couple days before I ate something I knew was going to give me some pretty bad d. then the day before I didn't eat anything but a piece of a grilled chicken breast... and took 4 imodium ad. the whole week i was on vacation I had probably 2 slices of turkey lunch meat, some graham crackers and ginger ale.... i pretty much starved myself in fear of having an ibs episode while i was there, i was in a room w/ 4 ppl and one br, so needless to say I wasn't really hype on having an attack there.

    When I flew home I was sooooooooooooooooo weak, it wasn't a good thing to do, but you know exactly what that feeling is like too, so you can understand.

    Thats part of the reason i've went from a 185-195 lbs to 150-160lbs.... Not just because of times like these, but because of the actual times where I have to go to the br a lot.

    It's one of those nights tonight actually, I haven't eaten really big since Thursday. I have a meeting I have to go to tonight and I won't eat until I'm back at myself.

    Good luck!

    Last edited by bulletinboard25; 04-30-2005 at 03:27 PM.

     
    Old 05-01-2005, 03:15 AM   #5
    Joyce Macway
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    Re: Fear of Flying with IBS

    I travel a lot. when I book my flights I ask for a seat near the bathroom. I have had to use it right before landings and a few other times when the seatbelt light was on. I just told the flight attendents I "got to go". They let me at my own risk

     
    Old 05-01-2005, 08:42 AM   #6
    Georgette
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    Re: Fear of Flying with IBS

    It's such a vicious cycle, isn't it? We anticipate problems, which causes them to act up. Last year when I was away on a cruise for two weeks, I came back about 7 pounds lighter, because I was afraid to eat. The days that we were in port I wouldn't eat any breakfast, so the at-sea days were a nice relief - I had a nice breakfast with everything like eggs, bacon, sausage, hash browns, fruit, etc... Everyone thought I was weird because I didn't gain weight like most people do on cruises.

     
    Old 05-02-2005, 09:03 AM   #7
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    Re: Fear of Flying with IBS

    I can relate to almost all of what's been said concerning flying and IBS. Especially the diarreha, which can be really bad when you're uptight about flying. Fortunately, flying doesn't bother me at all, so that's a real help when you have to fly. We just got back from flying to Atlanta from Washington (State). In a couple months we're going to go to Hawaii. I also have medication I can take for anxiety, if I were to need them. I have Klonipin. There are two other meds I would like to suggest or reccomend to all of you that are going to be flying and are uptight about needing the bathroom during the flight. I have these and both are prescriptions. I have Lomotil which is much more effective than Immodium AD. The other is a powder called Cholestyramine. You mix it with juice or even water and it shuts down the diarreha for about four hours. It comes in a box, with about 50 packets to the box. I would really reccomend both of these to anyone with IBS diarreha.

    Happy flying!!!

    Last edited by Rrector; 11-28-2006 at 01:20 PM.

     
    Old 05-04-2005, 10:25 PM   #8
    abrownie55
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    Re: Fear of Flying with IBS

    I am flying in a couple weeks my fear is already starting to build up too. The last time I flew was three years ago and I took imodium and ativan. The ativan made me sleep through the entire flight, which I was thrilled about. I hate the idea of having diarrhea on the plane. I don't know what to do this time as I no longer have health insurance because I quit my job and can't really afford to pay out of pocket for doctor costs and meds costs. I have been rejected by two separate insurance companies for my IBS. I just don't know what to do!

     
    Old 11-27-2006, 09:09 PM   #9
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    Re: Fear of Flying with IBS

    I don't eat or drink anything before I get on a plane, nor while on the plane. I'm just too afraid of my IBS kicking in. We go to Vegas every year and I have learned I'm not missing much, anyway. To make matters worse, I can't drink anything without having to urinate right away. I'm chained to the bathroom!

    Pamlou

     
    Old 12-01-2006, 10:01 PM   #10
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    Re: Fear of Flying with IBS

    I get IBS and the urge to urinate as soon as I step on the plane. My greatest fear is losing control of my bowels on take off and landing when I'm strapped in.

     
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