Patient Comments: Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) - Diagnosis


How was your case of IBS diagnosed? Submit Your Comment

Comment from: Rick, 55-64 Male (Patient) Published: August 17

My IBS (irritable bowel syndrome) situation started after a couple of courses of powerful antibiotics. I woke up in the night feeling like a parade float. Pain and pressure were uncomfortable, almost unbearable. Once I had to go to emergency room (ER). The doctor told me that antibiotics destroyed my stomach flora and I now have IBS. Now it’s about FODMAP foods and I only eat what I have found to be neutral to my system. I had to give up coffee after 50 years. I am on probiotics, IBgard and Gas-X. Change your diet or get use to suffering.

Comment from: Positive, 19-24 Female (Patient) Published: February 28

I was diagnosed with IBS (irritable bowel syndrome) today after the doctor did a colonoscopy a week ago. It has been 1 year and 2 months that I have been struggling with pain going in and out of hospital.

Comment from: Enuff, 55-64 Male (Patient) Published: February 05

Twenty years ago, I woke up to find every joint in my body swollen. I went to my doctor and after many tests, I was diagnosed with fibromyalgia. Ok, I can handle that, but then I wonderfully found out that along with fibromyalgia, comes IBS (irritable bowel syndrome), not IBS-D (IBS-diarrhea), but IBS-C (IBS-constipation). So I have struggled to find something to help me feel 'normal'. Most of the 'miracle cures' on the internet are bogus. Sometimes I feel great, then it hits, and oh, the agony, until it passes. Sometimes a few days or weeks.

Comment from: Bif, 55-64 Male (Patient) Published: July 17

I stopped drinking coffee and the IBS (irritable bowel syndrome) symptoms went away. I used to drink a lot of coffee, got bloating, cramping, gas, and some blood also during bowel movement. I had to constantly wipe many times what's like a dripping faucet, to find myself get to the end of any material exiting. I stopped caffeine in any form and have been symptom-free for two months - I did have IBS symptoms for twenty years. Caffeine withdrawal was pretty serious but I got through it. Feels amazing I can have regular gas and not check underpants. Good luck.

Comment from: Christy N, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: May 15

I had stomach aches and diarrhea since I was ten years old. Doctors gave me Mylanta. By the time I was in my 20s I had barium tests and stomach scopes and colonoscopy which revealed a 'slow system' so I was put on Propulsid, which I stopped after 3 days because of the pain. Endometriosis was discovered at 28 and I had hysterectomy of everything at 29. Lactose intolerance and IBS (irritable bowel syndrome) diagnosis at 32 and I started on dicyclomine, which helps. Discovered Ehlers-Danlos and sensitivity to gluten at 42. No more wheat has helped tremendously.

Comment from: Miller, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: April 14

After several MRIs, Barium tests, X-Rays, and ultrasounds (including a gynecological ultrasound), I was told I had irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). I have had it now for three years and never get relief. I have had a chronic stomach ache since then. I go from diarrhea to constipation (hospitalized for three days once as I was full of poop). I always have a stomach ache. I am usually bloated, tired, and fearful of travelling. I cannot play with my kids properly. I have been given no real medication to try. I have been taking Metamucil and laxatives for a year now. I also have sharp pain in my right side, and I cannot sleep on any side any longer. I feel like I am being poked by something on my right side. I had my gallbladder removed seven years ago, and they think that is scar tissue. I wish someone could figure this thing out!

Comment from: paintbyno, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: April 06

I have had problems with diarrhea, stomach pain, nausea and gas for many years. I have had ultra sounds, MRI’s, and blood tests the whole gambit. My physician said a good guess would be an over active intestine since all my tests results were negative for any diseases. I was on Asacol and found relief for two years, but then developed pancreatitis from it. Now I am at the end of the road. No medicines are left available to me. All my symptoms have returned and it is very difficult to live a normal life. Besides knowing where every bathroom is located at every moment, I have eliminated lactose, high fructose corn syrup, and any sugars ending in -ose from my diet. If I dare drink coffee, I use a diluted formula of 25% coffee to 75% hot water and add 2 tsp. of benefiber. If I travel, I take Imodium the night before I leave. I am also using 'Digestive Advantage-IBS', a pro biotic capsule. I am now looking into immune system products. I don't know if stress has caused symptoms or if the symptoms caused my stress. Last advice, find a good doctor.

Comment from: cbriget, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: April 01

I was diagnosed with IBS about 3 years ago, after approximately 4 prior years of dealing with it. I have had no testing. I have, at my doctor’s advice, tried many different types of diets. None of these helped. My doctor has tried several different medications and not one has helped. My doctor has basically said he can not do anything else to help. My doctor also stated that is will get better in time, a long time. I have just learned to adapt, I eat only at home because know I will be running for the bathroom soon after I eat on most days. Some days are not so bad. It is embarrassing to have this problem and I can not go out to eat with my family without finding a bathroom and hoping it will be empty as soon as I eat. I avoid eating in any social situation if possible. I have tried eating and not eating certain foods to no avail. I honestly have just given up on getting any relief.


IBS - Irritable Bowel Syndrome: Symptoms, Diet, Treatment See Slideshow
Comment from: califcrickette, Female Published: March 23

It seems my stomach has always been an issue for me. I had three ulcers by age 13. However, over the years, the ulcers would come and go with life’s stresses. Around 10 years ago, I realized something was different. I was told I had IBS. I lived with it like we all seem to be doing. On a family trip to Disneyland a few years back, my daughter-in-law told me she had the same problem, mostly constipation. She was taking Hyoscyamine sulfate, 0.125 mg. I have been using it for years now. Hey, it does work most of the time. I have no idea what the long-term usage is. I just know that this has been the only thing that has helped besides a super great veggie diet. That really does work the best. I have no motivation, nor the money to go that direction at the moment. Anyway, it is something that does work for me. Best of luck to all of us bloated ones!

Comment from: berly, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: March 09

I have suffered from what I think might be IBS, but I do not have the cramping or pain that seems to be associated with IBS. I can go from constipation to diarrhea in a flash. The diarrhea can almost be explosive at times. Foods, especially ones with MSB, fatty, etc., seem to trigger a bowel movement that makes me run for the bathroom. Salad bars seem to be a big contributor to my symptoms. I just avoid them when possible. I seem to be affected by smells, too. I can go into certain stores and have to go to the bathroom. I have had colonoscopies, drank barium and have only been told that I have a spastic colon. Another person that listed comments talked about having to have a bowel movement if they wait a bit to urinate. I have that problem, too. I hate having to always know where every bathroom is!!!!

Comment from: bvi1998, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: March 06

Though it seems I have always had these symptoms, it seems my first clue was when my doctor was doing a quick rectal exam and told me I had a spastic colon. Years later, I went to a gastroenterologist because I was having a lot of pain in my intestines. From my described symptoms, it was determined I had IBS but was also given a colonoscopy. Nothing was found with the exception of inflammation in my large intestine, which he thought could have occurred because of the prep. When he was performing the colonoscopy and got to that area, it was very painful and made me clearly say "ouch" out loud to him. I was prescribed Nulev, which allows me to have about five minutes to get to the bathroom: a fantastic emergency drug, just great. Other than that, no other tests have been performed.

Comment from: Amysroses, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: October 27

I was diagnosed with irritable bowel syndrome in my early 20s. I am now 32. I had a colonoscopy performed, and my doctor told me to use Benefiber (a powder in my drinks), get plenty of exercise, and drink lots of water. Since then, I have gone to the emergency room because I looked very pregnant some evenings. I was just extremely constipated. I learned to deal with my instant pregnancies right before I started getting major pain in the right side of my stomach some evenings. I thought I had an erupting appendix! Back at the hospital, I learned to deal with that and the constant changes from diarrhea to constipation.

Comment from: jilly, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: October 13

I was diagnosed with IBS as a college student, 35 years ago. A barium enema test was used to rule out non-functional disease. The triggers back then remain the triggers today stress and alcohol. Bouts may last only a few days or go on for months. Yet there have been years where I have had no symptoms. The symptoms are mixed. Constipation always occurs with bloating. Diarrhea may be loose stools or very frequent stools. Pain is concentrated on the left side and lower back. Relief after a bowel movement is very brief. The pain returns very quickly and is then even more intense. I liken it to a hot poker up the rectum. I had a colonoscopy 4 years ago that was negative. Now I am about to get another as the doctor suspects diverticulosis.

Comment from: 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: September 09

I was diagnosed with IBS when I was 17; I am now 32. I have also always suffered with anxiety, which I have found definitely has an effect on my IBS symptoms. It comes and goes, and I have been able to recognize certain triggers, for example, when my period is due, I have diarrhea and cramps. If I drink tea or coffee, I immediately have to use the bathroom, etc. My symptoms cycle through constipation and diarrhea alternately, and the pain is usually in my back or on one or other side of my abdomen, sometimes dull and nauseating, sometimes sharp. Heat pads help. At first I was given Colofac, but I don't use them now. I occasionally take peppermint oil capsules, but to be honest, I don't find anything does the job very well. I prefer to avoid known triggers if possible and deal with the symptoms. Exercise helps too; I walk a lot these days. IBS is very unpleasant but can be coped with. The longer you have it, the better you get to know yourself and your own symptoms and triggers, because everyone is different.

Published: July 25

I was diagnosed about 15 years ago. I have had problems going to the bathroom since my early 20's. I am now 39. I have taken Lithium for 20 yrs, due to my body does not produce enough as well as I am considered bi-polar. I had tests after tests and still nothing showed up. Yet I could be cramped over in the bathroom half a night wanting to die it hurt so bad. Just this last month I went 13 days in a row with no bowel movement. I have increased my fiber, and a take a stool softener every night. I am as frustrated as everyone else out there. It’s definitely a way of life for me, but the older I get I am working harder to find ways to lessen the every day burden for me. I am going to doctor on Monday mainly because I have not gained weight (# wise) but I look like I am 5 months pregnant in the belly. Now that is bothersome.


What is irritable bowel syndrome or IBS? See Answer
Comment from: Jan, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: March 31

I am a 38-year-old mother of one and grandmother of two. I miss out on a lot of things going on in their lives as my life has been taken over by irritable bowel syndrome. I can barely eat breakfast or lunch and only a saucer-sized meal for dinner. My stomach swells up as if I'm four months pregnant. Whenever I swallow food, I get severe pain. If I eat gluten-free food and gluten-free drinks, I'm 100% fine. If I have any regular food, the pain is unreal.

Comment from: MaryJane197, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: November 25

Last week, I went to the doctor and was diagnosed with IBS. I’ve always had discomfort in with bowl movements. It seemed as if anything I ate or drank triggered a hard bowel movement that would have me bent over the toilet, hurting. For a while, I just thought that was normal. I would eat, and then by the end of that day or the next morning, I would have a bad bowl movement. So, I started only eating once a day to try to solve this. I didn’t have health insurance, so I couldn’t afford to have this checked out. So now, six years later, I finally have health insurance and a doctor. He put me on a medication called Amitiza. It made me nauseous, gave me stomach pains, and it made me have to urinate a lot. I didn’t have as many bowl movements, but when I did, they still hurt a lot. Instead of the bowl movements being hard as a rock, they were runnier, softer. But they still hurt. So I had a follow-up exam. My doctor says he wants me to take Bentyl for now, which is a form of muscle relaxer. It’s supposed to help with the cramping you get from IBS. He also wants me to take fiber, such as Metamucil. I don’t see how the fiber will help. That will just cause me to have more bowl movements, which hurt. And the Bentyl isn’t a long-term drug. So, now I’m not sure what to do.

Published: July 23

The doctors ask a bunch of questions. My symptoms were pain in stomach, around naval area. Bloating, bowel changes from lose to hard! Sick to my stomach, at times. Throw up in mornings. Pregnancy test given, had an upper GI. Followed up with doctor visit and was told I had I.B.S., and the starts of appeared to be three ulcers. They gave me some Mylanta and sent me home!

Comment from: DMPants26, 35-44 Male (Patient) Published: January 26

I'm in mid 30's and I was told to use Benefiber and Metamucil and I was diagnosed with IBS. I go to the walk in clinic because I look Pregent. I have been diagnosed with IBS since I was in my early 30's. I was also told try and change my diet. My doctor also told me to try a nutritionist to help me with my IBS some days I have a lot of pain and there are some days where have a little pain. I seek my primary care doctor regularly for IBS.

Comment from: camy57, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: January 26

I was diagnosed with IBS-D last year, I am wondering why I have other problems that maybe relate to having this, Whenever I have to urinate, and I hold it just for a few seconds I find that it irritates the other and I have gas or have diarrhea both, I wonder if anyone knows what the cause of this is, it makes me unable to work or even go to stores etc, standing in lines are out of the question, in case it hits me and I have to urinate then it starts up on me.

Comment from: darkfire, 13-18 Female (Patient) Published: January 26

I am a 17 year old mother. I started having abdominal pain and started having diarrhea/constipation variants about a month and a half ago I was referred to a gastro doctor. I have had a colonoscopy, CT scan, ultrasound and x ray. They still haven’t figured out what is wrong with me. I am having bloating, constipation, vomiting and rectal bleeding. I wonder if someone might can tell me if they know what’s wrong with me or if they know something with the same symptoms?

Comment from: La, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: January 26

I was diagnosed with IBS after I had a colonoscopy done. I had the symptoms previously, but I couldn't figure out why I was so constipated and bloated all the time. Almost a year later still the same symptoms. I find in order for me to get better. I have to totally change my diet.

Comment from: Dean Cassidy, 25-34 Male (Patient) Published: January 26

I have over the past few years had issues with differentiating bowel movements and pains, one day normal, later that day soft, then next thing you know constipation. I am 27 and have been frustrated with this issue and lack of knowledge from doctors. Having me try one thing after another. I have had to do my own research online and so far I have found that probiotics have helped the most, and of course changing my diet. An increase in fiber, decrease in dairy and exercise is the best of all, I walk or run for at least an hour through out each day. I seem to know about this issue then most doctors. If you need any advice or help feel free to email me.

Comment from: ashley1984, 19-24 Female (Patient) Published: January 26

I was diagnosed with IBS when I was about 20, I am 24 years now. It has been a struggle, but I am getting through it. It took the doctors about 2 years to finally notice that there was something wrong. I could not even eat a salad and I would be in the bathroom in 10 minutes. Finally I found out that I have IBS and it is not a lot of fun, I don't eat if I have to travel, I make sure that there is a bathroom where ever I go. I notice now that I am on medication it is getting better. There are times where the pain is severe and I feel like I am not going to make through it, and there is time where I am not sick for a couple of weeks. I hope that one day My IBS will go away and I can live my life again.

Comment from: heather, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: October 16

I was in pain a lot and my tummy was always bloated. I couldn’t eat as I was sick all the time, but didn’t lose any weight. I went in to hospital to have tube down throat.