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Abdominal pain, constipation. Blood work, X-ray report came clear. Taking Senakot S, centrum, vitamins. Suggest remedy

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Hi, my name is XXXXXXX I am male, 53 years old, have no allergies, and in general, have been in good health for most of life with no known sickness or illnesses. In fact, I have never ever been admitted to a hospital. Over the past month or so, I have had abnormal abdominal pains, and constipation. On three occasions within the last month or so, I have gone to emergency to be looked at, and so far, nothing of concern has been found. However, that does not take away from the fact that I still have some constipation and sabdominal pain or discomfort.
On the first visit, I felt a pain right in the mddle of my chest below the sternum about 2 inches. At that time they prescribed Pantopraziole (40 MG) as they thought it might be due to excess gas. The doctor also did a visual rectum exam, and stuck his finger up my rectum to see if he could feel anything abnormal,and he could not.
On the second visit, they took an x-ray, and also did not see anything as well as some blood tests. What the x-ray showed was some gas in my gastrointestinal tract but that was it. I had noted this could have been caused by the fact that I was burping a lot and as I was not used to burping a lot, had a tendency to close my mouth and swallow the burbs. He also had me go and do an upper ultrasound, and could not see anything.
On the third visit, he again said I should take the Pantroprazole (40 MG). He also gave me a shot of bustapan, which helped me have a good bowel movement. One of the questions they had asked me if I ate a lot of cheese. I said I did like eating cheese, and normally, when I do, have coka cola with it as an extra acid to help digest it. However, I was not drinking as much coke lately. So, their theory was that the cheese may have `bunched`up and as a result, caused a bit of a blockage as my stomach could not handle the cheese without the coka cola.
Today, I am taking Senakot S (2 tablets nightly which a mild stool softener and laxative), Centrum 50+ viatamin, Vitamin D pills (drugstore brand), and Vitamin D3 (drugstore brand). I have also supplemented this with Metamucil as of yesterday to add some additional fiber content. My urine seems to be a normal color with no discolorization. My stools are somewhat smallish, although brown in color, with some of them floating, and some of them sinking. Also, I have not detected any blood in them. My guess is that with the excess gas I have seen, it may be causing some of them to float. Other symptoms I have include some fatigue and a small bit of swelling in my neck glands. I have been taking some ibiprofin for this which seems to help. I also bought a blood sugar monitor from the store to see if it might show anything, and my blood sugar levels are within the normal range. I also had detected a bit of white coloring on my tongue. Based on my GOOGLE search, I thought bit could be due to THRUSH. So, I bought a tongue toothbrush and have been using it to clean my tongue as well as gargling with Listerine which seems to have helped. In the last couple of days, I have also started to develop a cold sore on the right side of my mouth. I am not sure if they are related or not but wanted to mention it. On Friday, I called something here called HealthLink and described the symptoms to a Registered Nurse. She again did not think that there was anything to be alarmed about but suggested I contact my doctor in about 3 days if the constipation did not get better. She also suggested taking the Metamucil, as well as taking some daily walks to have gravity help me with the bowel movements.
I have also mbeen trying to improve my diet. So, I have been eating a ceral high in fiber (Almond Brand), and eating yogurt (which I normally do not do).
So, this is where I am at - any thoughts you might have would be appreciated.
Posted Sat, 27 Apr 2013 in Digestion and Bowels
Answered by Dr. Charles S Narasi 3 hours later

Thanks for your query.

Looks like you have done your homework! Well, I think the fact you are constipated and have gas build up along with abdominal pains certainly points to Irritable Bowel Syndrome, constipation predominant.

This usually occurs in younger individuals but can occur at any age. This is a result of Brain-Gut reaction misfiring. It is mediated through Serotonin and also dietary and environmental factors add up.

I am glad that your blood work, x-ray studies and stool for blood have been negative. You mention digital examination of your rectum but I am not sure you had a sigmoidoscopy or colonoscopy.
You are in the age group for screening colonoscopy and you should have that done to make sure you don't have any large polyps or growths causing blockage. It is unlikely but just the same, you need to have it done.

As for treatment, you do need to change your eating habits. You do need to add fiber. Whole grain cereals, nuts, legumes, fresh fruits and vegetables must be part of your diet. If you don't get enough fiber through diet, then you need supplements such as metamucil or effersyllium or similar products with plenty of fluids. If you need, you can add a stool softener like colace or surfak daily. The other one that is very helpful in relieving stubborn constipation is PEG solution (Polyethylene glycol). Taken daily according to instructions, you can get regulated. Miralax or comparable generic solutions are available at the drug store or grocery store.

Regular walking or some exercises to strengthen abdominal muscles would also help.

Hope I have given enough to work with.

I wish you the very best.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Abdominal pain, constipation. Blood work, X-ray report came clear. Taking Senakot S, centrum, vitamins. Suggest remedy 2 hours later
I have a follow-up quesetion. Let mw pretend for a minute that my sugar levels were higher than normal, as if I was in the pre-stages of DIABETIS 2 (I am not saying I am - but, for this question, let me assume I am).
From what I have read - high sugar levels could also be the cause of some of the symptoms I am seeing. It would certainly explain the abdominal pain and perhaps the constipation. From what I have read, there are three levels of sugar - below normal, normal, and above normal. Since I am not 100% sure what constitutes above normal, I thought I would ask. Based on this - it still could be IBS but, I am wondering my new research on the web also has any validity. Should I be doing anything differently to see if this true and validate this possibility?
Answered by Dr. Charles S Narasi 1 hour later

Well, if you assume that you have diabetes , then it is possible to have "Diabetic Enteropathy" that means diarrhea not constipation.

This is part of daibetic neuropathy and it can affect the nerve endings in the intestinal tract and cause diarrhea. If the diabetes is well controlled , this can be controlled as well.

Hope that answers your hypothetical question.

I wish you well.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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