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  • Lots of problems in lower abdomen area in past few years - Advice?

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    Old 04-30-2018, 09:40 AM   #1
    Correctusage
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    Question Lots of problems in lower abdomen area in past few years - Advice?

    I have had IBS/D for about 10 years now, since age 25. (Multiple Loose stools daily, independent of dietary changes, colonoscopy, upper endoscopy, bloodwork all clear). Last year in February( 2017), I started peeing blood and it was excruciatingly painful. Had thorough evaluations from 3 doctors, including a specialist, and no bacteria was ever found, so after 3 more blood/painful ďnon-UTIsĒ and a cystoscopy, was told I have interstitial cystitis. Treatment = Nothing except change my diet accordingly. Treating with D-Mannose when symptoms arise.

    In addition, began getting serious yeast infections every month, treated with pill or Monistat. Those have died down a little, but it seems every month I am fighting getting another.

    For 10 years now, have had bleeding between periods that has gotten worse over time = Now I only have one week a month where Iím not bleeding. I shunned birth control because when I used to take it, my heart went crazy and I am fearful of experiencing that again. I had endometrial polyps removed 3 years ago, which have since grown back, in addition to a large ovarian cyst that has stuck around for 2 years and most recently, several large fibroids were discovered with fluid in cul-de-sac. Had a biopsy done in-office which came back clear, but my uterine lining is extremely thick (has been for years...) and it is... delicate, which MAY explain SOME of the bleeding?

    At any rate... I canít help but think all of these issues (Concurrent IBS-D, Interstitial cystitis, uterine growths) are related. They are all taking place in the same area of my body, and it seems that every year since my mid-twenties, something new pops up. I feel my body is trying to tell me something, but every doctor, every specialist, only looks at their area of expertise and no one relates one thing to another.

    I donít know what to do. I am otherwise healthy, BMI 22, exercise several times per week, 35 years old now. No children, 2 miscarriages in early 20s.

    With all my female issues (fibroids, cysts, polyps), do any of you recommend a partial hysterectomy? Have any of you had elective hysterectomy at a young age to avoid frequently going under to remove random growths as they appear? If so, how was the procedure, and how is life now? Concerns about heart health after the procedure?

    I just want ONE area, whether bowel/uterus/bladder, to stop being a problem. I donít know what I did wrong in my previous life, but I must have been a real jerk, hehe! Btw- 90% vegan, 10% vegetarian, non-smoker, non-drinker. Supplement with B12, D3, and probiotics. Last time I saw my primary care physician a year ago, he told my that all of my issues were because I didnít walk enough. LOL! Yeah... I was pretty disappointed with that diagnosis. I guess walking is the cure for fibroids, cysts, polyps, UTI, yeast infection, unexplained persistent diarrhea, migraines, burst appendix, etc. Sigh. Help me!!!

     
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    Old 04-30-2018, 10:38 AM   #2
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    Re: Lots of problems in lower abdomin area in past few years - Advice?

    Dear Correctusage,

    What a lot of hassle! I am so sorry!
    Have you been by gynecologist? If not I suggest that you take your case to a female gynecologist that has 25 or more years of experience. And you may need to be seen by a urologist or kidney specialist regarding the bleeding from the bladder. There are other specialists that can help put the pieces together like gastroenterologists and urologists. Some issues, though, may only relate to one specialty.

    If you need a referral from your primary care doctor put in that request. A Primary Care doc should refer you to a specialist if he/she can't help you. Call your insurance company to find out how to get a referral if it is required as soon as possible and explain the bleeding, infections etc. and that this is urgent.

    Request a doctor outside your medical group...because doctors within a medical group always support each others' opinions. By law insurance must pay for out of group consultation. I'm just sharing the options.

    A partial hysterectomy is not a good idea because when detached from the uterus the ovaries eventually stop working, die and need to be removed or they cause complications. It may be that you need a full hysterectomy. That's a harsh solution for someone your age. But nowadays we can safely take female hormones.

    There are great doctors that will look out for you. Do not tolerate a ho-hum disinterested doctor, hon.

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    Last edited by yayagirl; 04-30-2018 at 10:41 AM.

     
    Old 04-30-2018, 03:30 PM   #3
    Correctusage
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    Re: Lots of problems in lower abdomin area in past few years - Advice?

    YayaGirl - thanks very much for your words of wisdom! I have actually seen numerous specialists in all areas (gyno, gastro, urologist) to diagnose and treat my conditions. My worst experience has been with my primary, who thinks I’m a just a crazy woman, unfortunately. I didn’t realize the hysterectomy came with such negative outcomes, so I really appreciate your input. I used to work in an office where every woman except me had had a hysterectomy, and I was shocked that it seemed to be so common. Now I know why - It’s one of the easiest things for a surgeon to do! Anyway, you are so sweet and I thank you so much for your reply - Especially the tip about going out of my medical group. I will do that next! Thanks again! Have a great day

     
    Old 05-01-2018, 11:51 AM   #4
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    Re: Lots of problems in lower abdomen area in past few years - Advice?

    I'm sorry for all your troubles! Based on my experience and everything I've learned since my unwarranted hysterectomy 12 years ago, a hysterectomy will likely create a whole new set of problems. Although the uterus is treated as if its only function is for having babies, it has lifelong functions besides its "connection" to the ovaries and their proper hormone production. It's a placeholder / anchor for the bladder and bowel so its removal can cause problems or worsen existing problems.

    Many women, like me, experience loss of libido and sexual response even when the ovaries are not removed. You definitely cannot have uterine orgasms without a uterus. Mood changes seem common too.

    After my figure changed post-hysterectomy despite no weight gain (although weight gain is common), I discovered that the uterine ligaments are the support structures for the spine, hips and rib cage which explains why my midsection collapsed and I developed that apron of fat in my lower abdomen and I lost the curve in my lower back.

    The (also) unwarranted removal of my ovaries (the equivalent of men's testicles) created a whole other set of debilitating life-shattering problems including rapid aging of skin and hair. It seems many people do not know that the ovaries produce hormones a woman's whole life. They just produce more testosterone and less estrogen after menopause.

    You are right to be concerned about heart disease, the #1 killer of women (it kills 1 in 3 women). I discovered that heart disease risk is increased after hysterectomy even when ovaries are not removed and that risk is much greater if they are. There's a long list of increased health risks after ovary removal or their failure post-hysterectomy.

    I assume you know that dietary changes can be helpful with interstitial cystitis?

    It's good your endometrial biopsy was negative. It's best to have an ultrasound done 1 or 2 days after a normal period / good bleed to know if your lining is getting thinned out. But did you know that fibroids and polyps can sometimes make the lining appear thicker than it is?

    Maybe a different type of contraceptive would be helpful. Or if you want to go the non-hormonal route for the times when you're bleeding heavily, tranexamic acid (Lysteda) may be worth trying.

    Bottom line though, please do your own research about the after effects of hysterectomy and/or ovary removal. For all the problems it causes, it's troubling that it's so common.

     
    Old 05-01-2018, 04:09 PM   #5
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    Re: Lots of problems in lower abdomen area in past few years - Advice?

    Wow, STLouisgal, you are a wealth of information!! I think you have sufficiently informed me enough that I will not happily go along with recommendations for a hysterectomy. I had researched it a lot and for every scary story, I was coming across a lot of people who claimed it was a very positive outcome in their lives. It’s just so hard to tell sometimes, which is why I am in awe of your detailed response. I seemed to have found small warnings here and there about hysterectomies, but I never came across a source that put the whole picture together like you did in your response.

    I am so sorry your hysterectomy created such unpleasant results. I feel terrible that you have suffered with all of those side effects. You must be very resilient!

    I plan on resisting a hysterectomy of any type as long as no new issues prompt me to do so. At 35 now, I don’t know how long that will last, but I’ll keep my fingers crossed. I just hate the thought of undergoing anesthesia every year or two to keep removing all these new cysts/fibroids/polyps as they pop up. Such a drag.

     
    Old 05-01-2018, 06:08 PM   #6
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    Re: Lots of problems in lower abdomen area in past few years - Advice?

    Thank you for your kind words.

    Fibroids are common and oftentimes don't need to be removed especially if they're small. Some women do seem prone to polyps which can cause heavy bleeding and spotting. And it's worse if they aren't properly removed (removed at the base) via polypectomy. Are you prone to ovarian cysts? Do they usually resolve on their own as most do?

     
    Old 05-02-2018, 10:18 AM   #7
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    Re: Lots of problems in lower abdomen area in past few years - Advice?

    I had no problems after my hysterectomy at age 39...(im 63 now) .and never regretted a day. I did have endo cysts and fibroids with hell periods from day 1. Especially since I have other autoummune issues to deal with, period time exacerbated everything.

    Boils down to quality of life. The consistency of low dosage estradiol patch has made it easy.

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    Last edited by quincy; 05-02-2018 at 10:20 AM.

     
    Old 06-08-2018, 10:43 PM   #8
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    Re: Lots of problems in lower abdomen area in past few years - Advice?

    Correctusage
    Iím having a lot of the same problems, IC, IBS, possibly Endo. I recently got diagnosed with Fibromyalgia after suspecting it for years. Turns out all these issues are related, mostly in the fact doctors have no idea how any of these start and why. But they do know they usually show up together. I hope you get a good doctor who listens to you. Fibroids, cysts and Endo all have one thing in common as well- they all grow because of too much estrogen! Taking a DIM supplement naturally detoxes any extra estrogen.

    Last edited by Administrator; 06-09-2018 at 12:22 AM.

     
    Old 06-09-2018, 05:15 AM   #9
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    Re: Lots of problems in lower abdomen area in past few years - Advice?

    The new reply prompted me to reread mine. I can't believe I failed to mention that my hysterectomy caused permanent bowel problems. I had severe diarrhea for close to a year and although it improved I have been left with loose bowels with urgency. It's been 12 years since my surgery and I've had some testing done but the cause has never been determined. A small bowel follow-through was suggested but I can't bring myself to do one. And even if they did determine the cause, I doubt it's "fixable" without surgery and I don't want to undergo surgery. Bowel problems seem pretty common after hysterectomy but constipation seems to be the problem for most women.

     
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