Unrelated Health Issue

Anything on your mind that isn't about WED/RLS? It's nice to realize that there is life beyond this disease and have an opportunity to get to know our online family in a different context.
EeFall
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Unrelated Health Issue

Postby EeFall » Thu Sep 19, 2013 12:07 pm

A few weeks ago I suddenly got a stomach ache. This stomach ache was different than anything I had ever had before. It was like I was bloated but the pain was just below my ribs down to my belly button and the whole area from right to left. I took a bunch of antacids like tums, gas-x, Pepto Bismal. My wife even went to store and got me some pills that are suppose to work. It didn't go away because of the antacids, it just pretty suddenly stopped.

I forgot about it until it happened again a few days later. Then a few days later after that. It became worse but there was no correlation between any of the medications I was taking or anything I was eating. On Sunday of the 8th of September I got it again while mowing. I had only had a bowl of oatmeal that morning. It got pretty bad and I was sweating. I called and made a doctors appointment and got in to see the family doctor a day or two later. At the same time I quit taking gabapentin that the sleep doctor had given me to get to sleep because it was changing my personality, making me angry all the time.

The doctor had all kinds of tests run. Blood tests, stool test, urine tests and they were all normal (except I never saw anything about the stool test online). He was even worried about my heart so he had me do a stress test where you go on the treadmill. They had to stop the test eventually because I could have kept going for hours. I passed the test. As the days went on I didn't get anymore of the stomach aches. Then I thought the only thing I had changed was the gabapentin, I had stopped it. So I inferred that it was the gabapentin that was giving me the stomach aches. Wrong.

Yesterday at work, I got there at 6 am which was an hour early, at about 7:30 am I started having the stomach ache again and I could tell it was the same exact thing! So I had gone 10 days without having any problems. It didn't go away this time. Once it had lasted for about 7 hours previously and then went away. Yesterday I finally left work at 1:30 pm, and hour early. I got home and wrote the doctors office. I was in a lot of pain and they called me and said while my doctor was out of the office another doctor had said to go to the emergency room. We didn't go to our normal hospital because it is 30 miles anyway but to a different emergency room that was much closer. 

I don't think they were much impressed with my stomach ache and I sat there for 2 1/2 hours waiting to get in while probably 50 people went before me, and there were only a dozen people there when I had arrived. I ended up vomiting into a barf bag, first time that has happened. After that I had had enough and ripped the hospital band off my waist and my wife drove me home. At home it became even worse and I went in to the restroom and vomited a lot until all the bile was out of my stomach. The bile was pink but it may have been from the Pepto Bismal which is pink. I also had to go the other direction, and that was the second time in one day. I still was very sick and nothing I did made it any better. Finally at 7:30 pm I went to bed.

I laid on my back. I have one of those pillows underneath my pillow that props me up a little, it is in triangular shape. I just laid there on my back. Eventually I fell asleep and my wife came in at some point and had me put my VPAP mask on. I slept until 4 am. So right now I am writing this afraid to drink coffee or eat at 4:30 am. I am sipping water. I have no idea what is wrong with me but I have a feeling it is something very serious. Maybe a blockage in my small intestine or my stomach or something like that. Right now I don't feel sick at all, it can't be the flu or a cold, I am not sick. My lower back hurts like hell but that is probably from being in bed on my back for so long. The pain is gone again. Much lower down though it seems like I can feel something, probably from barfing my guts out. I just called in sick. My work is 20 miles south and I am afraid if it happens again I won't be able to make it back home, much less our hospital 30 miles north.

I am scared to death. I feel like I am at the calm before the storm and a hurricane is all about me. Whatever it is I am pretty sure it is just waiting to surface again. I wrote my doctors office another note last night that I had left the emergency room and why and that I wasn't going to eat anything again until I saw a doctor. I think it has to do with my digestion system, maybe if I don't eat it won't happen. I can drink water, that is about it. I don't know if I should attempt to go to the emergency room at our hospital. What would I tell them? Oh, I have this stomach pain, but I feel fine now. Maybe if I can't get in to see the doctor I can just call 911 when it occurs again and have the paramedics come, at least they would try to diagnose the problem.

But then again it hadn't occurred for 10 days from the last time. Wonder if it it takes another 10 days to come again? I don't know what to do. I'm out of sick leave and vacation. The company will give me a corrective action for missing work for leave without pay. I can actually get fired if I get 3 of those. Then I have WED to think about. Thank god I took my methadone at 5:30 pm yesterday and starting puking at 7 pm or the medicine wouldn't have been effective if I had vomited sooner.

ViewsAskew
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Re: Unrelated Health Issue

Postby ViewsAskew » Thu Sep 19, 2013 6:47 pm

EeFall - this is very similar to what happened to me when I had chronic appendicitis. It came on a bit more slowly, but those are the symptoms I had. They thought Chrohn's disease first. Eventually, mine ruptured and I almost died. Not to scare you....

For some odd reason, there is a rebound test they do to check for appendicitis. It didn't work for me. That's why they were sure it wasn't what I had. I would always get the nausea, the bile, and the pain along with the weird bowel movements. Sometimes it would be mild, sometimes severe. The worst ones I'd be drenched in sweat and feel like I had the flu.

Not sure how they can check for this. According to my surgeon, the appendix was the strangest looking one he'd ever seen. He wasn't sure, even after he'd removed it, my secum, and much of my ascending colon, that I'd not have more symptoms in the future. Other than typical issues with not having all of your gut, I'm fine.

Of course, this may not at all be what you have. Just my experience.
Ann - Take what you need, leave the rest

Managing Your RLS

Opinions presented by Discussion Board Moderators are personal in nature and do not, in any way, represent the opinion of the RLS Foundation, and are not medical advice.

debbluebird
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Re: Unrelated Health Issue

Postby debbluebird » Fri Sep 20, 2013 3:40 am

Did they do an ultra sound when you had all of those tests done ? If they did and it didn't show anything, then the next test that they should do is a cat scan. Sometimes you can have stuff but they can't diagnose it without a scan. If you had a blockage in the intestines you wouldn't be able to go to the bathroom, but you could vomit. There are so many things it could be, from the appendix, that Ann mentioned, to gall bladder, intestinal problems, stomach problems. They might even do a scope from both ends. My first choice would be the ultra sound then the cat scan.
I wouldn't call 911 unless you felt like you were going to die. They really can't diagnose. ER's aren't much better now days, as you found out. You pretty much have to be on deaths door. They also tend to just look at one thing. They aren't good at looking at multiple issues.
Keep us informed.

EeFall
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Re: Unrelated Health Issue

Postby EeFall » Fri Sep 20, 2013 4:02 am

The doctor finally got through to me, our phone was out and he found my cellphone number. He had me call him at home. He said I have Ileus, a slow moving part of my small intestine, or blockage. He said for at least the next 4 days to eat a bland diet take laxatives everyday, and psyllium everyday too. He then said if it happens again to go to the emergency room and call him.

I looked up the risk factors and I have 5 of the 7 listed :lol: Surgery, Diabetic (although it got well enough that they are not sure that I actually have it), hypothyroidism, taking opiates (methadone), and a neck injury (ruptured disk). Also it probably doesn't help to be taking kratom because it can make one very constipated.

EeFall
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Re: Unrelated Health Issue

Postby EeFall » Fri Sep 20, 2013 4:11 am

ViewsAskew wrote:According to my surgeon, the appendix was the strangest looking one he'd ever seen. He wasn't sure, even after he'd removed it, my secum, and much of my ascending colon, that I'd not have more symptoms in the future. Other than typical issues with not having all of your gut, I'm fine.


Wow, thanks for sharing. I hope it doesn't come to surgery but it might. He mentioned in his office that it could, if I had a blockage, but that the scar tissue from the prostate surgery probably had the most to do with it if I did have it and that surgery would just make more scar tissue and increase the possibility of having more blockage. It sounds like you do pretty good for having that much of your digestive tract removed and that is encouraging in that if I have to have surgery maybe it won't be that bad.

debbluebird
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Re: Unrelated Health Issue

Postby debbluebird » Fri Sep 20, 2013 4:12 am

Good, glad he got through to you.

EeFall
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Location: USA

Re: Unrelated Health Issue

Postby EeFall » Fri Sep 20, 2013 4:14 am

debbluebird wrote:Did they do an ultra sound when you had all of those tests done ? If they did and it didn't show anything, then the next test that they should do is a cat scan. Sometimes you can have stuff but they can't diagnose it without a scan. If you had a blockage in the intestines you wouldn't be able to go to the bathroom, but you could vomit. There are so many things it could be, from the appendix, that Ann mentioned, to gall bladder, intestinal problems, stomach problems. They might even do a scope from both ends. My first choice would be the ultra sound then the cat scan.
I wouldn't call 911 unless you felt like you were going to die. They really can't diagnose. ER's aren't much better now days, as you found out. You pretty much have to be on deaths door. They also tend to just look at one thing. They aren't good at looking at multiple issues.
Keep us informed.


No ultrasound and no cat scan. They took four X-Rays is all. If it happens again I will have my wife or someone take me to our regular hospital which is 30 miles north of here.

EeFall
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Re: Unrelated Health Issue

Postby EeFall » Fri Sep 20, 2013 4:15 am

debbluebird wrote:Good, glad he got through to you.


I must have hit the post button the same time you did lol, thanks.

EeFall
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Location: USA

Re: Unrelated Health Issue

Postby EeFall » Fri Sep 20, 2013 4:20 am

The phone deal is really strange. Last year we missed many important calls and people claiming they called us and left messages but we never got them! Then somehow I discovered that when our cable TV goes out (which is also our phone line) that the calls go to comcast on an electronic recording. When I found it there were 80 some calls lol. So I setup a message explaining to never leave a message on that message machine and forgot about it. When the doctor called he told me he didn't leave a message because I said not too lol, I had forgotten about the second electronic answering machine but then I remembered today while we were out they had cut the power putting in this community for 2 hours working on the road. Anyways it was nice he took the time to find my cellphone number.

EeFall
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Location: USA

Re: Unrelated Health Issue

Postby EeFall » Fri Sep 20, 2013 4:25 am

Holy crap! I thought I was losing my mind or becoming a hypochondriac or something. I just couldn't imagine that something else could be happening to my health. That emergency room sucks!

ViewsAskew
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Re: Unrelated Health Issue

Postby ViewsAskew » Fri Sep 20, 2013 4:41 am

Not all that different than my screwed up appendix - makes sense it's a gut issue. Glad they think it can be resolved with diet, laxitives, and so on.

You likely already know...drink LOTS of water with that fiber. Taking it without enough water is a nightmare. I know I find that walking is essential to good gut action. Could be some nice walks would help it move on outta there.
Ann - Take what you need, leave the rest



Managing Your RLS



Opinions presented by Discussion Board Moderators are personal in nature and do not, in any way, represent the opinion of the RLS Foundation, and are not medical advice.

EeFall
Posts: 1494
Joined: Thu Jan 03, 2013 4:11 am
Location: USA

Re: Unrelated Health Issue

Postby EeFall » Fri Sep 20, 2013 4:48 am

ViewsAskew wrote:Not all that different than my screwed up appendix - makes sense it's a gut issue. Glad they think it can be resolved with diet, laxitives, and so on.

You likely already know...drink LOTS of water with that fiber. Taking it without enough water is a nightmare. I know I find that walking is essential to good gut action. Could be some nice walks would help it move on outta there.


I am apprehensive about going to work tomorrow. It is 20 miles south of here so 50 miles from our hospital emergency. In traffic it could take a couple of hours to get there from work. I was thinking of taking off tomorrow, Friday, and seeing how it goes this weekend. What do you think?

ViewsAskew
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Re: Unrelated Health Issue

Postby ViewsAskew » Sat Sep 21, 2013 12:45 am

EeFall wrote:
ViewsAskew wrote:Not all that different than my screwed up appendix - makes sense it's a gut issue. Glad they think it can be resolved with diet, laxitives, and so on.

You likely already know...drink LOTS of water with that fiber. Taking it without enough water is a nightmare. I know I find that walking is essential to good gut action. Could be some nice walks would help it move on outta there.


I am apprehensive about going to work tomorrow. It is 20 miles south of here so 50 miles from our hospital emergency. In traffic it could take a couple of hours to get there from work. I was thinking of taking off tomorrow, Friday, and seeing how it goes this weekend. What do you think?


I didn't see this until it's already tomorrow :-).

What did you do?
Ann - Take what you need, leave the rest



Managing Your RLS



Opinions presented by Discussion Board Moderators are personal in nature and do not, in any way, represent the opinion of the RLS Foundation, and are not medical advice.

EeFall
Posts: 1494
Joined: Thu Jan 03, 2013 4:11 am
Location: USA

Re: Unrelated Health Issue

Postby EeFall » Sat Sep 21, 2013 4:49 am

ViewsAskew wrote:
EeFall wrote:
ViewsAskew wrote:Not all that different than my screwed up appendix - makes sense it's a gut issue. Glad they think it can be resolved with diet, laxitives, and so on.

You likely already know...drink LOTS of water with that fiber. Taking it without enough water is a nightmare. I know I find that walking is essential to good gut action. Could be some nice walks would help it move on outta there.


I am apprehensive about going to work tomorrow. It is 20 miles south of here so 50 miles from our hospital emergency. In traffic it could take a couple of hours to get there from work. I was thinking of taking off tomorrow, Friday, and seeing how it goes this weekend. What do you think?


I didn't see this until it's already tomorrow :-).

What did you do?


I stayed home. I had a little stomach pain during the day but not bad. I was really stressed out last night and only had a few hours sleep. I am glad I stayed home except for losing the money.

EeFall
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Location: USA

Re: Unrelated Health Issue

Postby EeFall » Mon Sep 23, 2013 5:28 am

This is posted under everything else, I just want to clarify that because it has nothing to do with WED. Or does it? I have had WED for years now, more than a decade. Actually I keep saying 13 years or going on 14 but a guy who had narcolepsy told me he thought I had RLS back in about 1989. It had already been messing with my sleep for several years before he mentioned it to me. I'd come into work dead tired, not just because I was working 10 to 12 hours a day 6 days a week either, if anything, all that work even though it was mental labor should have made me sleep like the dead. I remember complaining that I only had 4 hours of sleep the night before or something like that. I didn't know why I felt so restless at night in bed and it didn't always happen. I just figured it was because I had a lot of nervous energy and the work would have stressed anyone out, except I also knew that nothing like that bothered me when I went to bed, I never worried about stuff like that. Besides I was 25 years younger, in my early 30's and too busy at home and work to think about my health.

Now I wonder looking back on it if maybe it might be responsible for my current situation. You need a good amount of restful sleep to stay healthy. It runs your body down to go year after year without sleep and it only got worse. By 2000 I was getting hardly any sleep. I'm just thinking that I got my prostate cancer at 56 years old, pretty young for that type of cancer. No one in my family as far back as I can go have ever had prostate cancer. My dad got lung cancer but then he lived in smog most of his life and smoked 2 packs of cigarettes a day for over 50 years. He died when he was 72. Not bad when you consider he was healthy up until the last year of his life. I'm just saying that if I could go to a parallel universe where I never got WED would I have gotten the cancer? Of course there is no way to know for sure, but I sort of doubt it.

I have just been puzzling over this and realized hey, WED is probably responsible for bringing down WED sufferers quicker than people who are not ill. Maybe it is the same with many illnesses, I just never really thought about it. WED is a little different, especially those with severe symptoms like I have. I had a sleep doctor many years ago tell me it was impossible to stay up more than 3 days in a row (I had just stayed up for a week in a row), he said a person would die without sleep. What a freaking moron, I should have left him as a patient then. I have whole years of my life that are a nightmare of endless days and nights of never going to bed. What does that do to us? I can't imagine. It is like my iPhone. That sucker will flash and say that only 10% of the battery remains (Plug me in dude!), I have never seen it say that it has -10% power left but I think many WED sufferers are probably living on a negative charge. Food and water keeps the body fueled up but the mind seems to be recharged with sleep.

It is like leaving a computer on for months at a time (I don't advise it) because everyday a computer will have a few errors and they add up over time until the computer needs to be turned off and rebooted. People need to be rebooted everyday. I never leave a computer on overnight because I have learned what will happen. Of course the mind is the brain and all of the nervous system if you think about it, how might it start making mistakes? Maybe it starts making mistakes on new cells that are made to replace the old ones (cancer), who knows?

They had me do a stress test last week because they were afraid that the pain in stomach was actually my heart. They wanted me to tell them when to stop the test. I kept going. I could have gone a long time but they ended up stopping the test. I got to thinking about that. While I don't exercise like running or treadmill or anything like that anymore, because even moderate exercise makes my WED worse, just think how many hundreds of nights over the years I have spent pacing the floor. Sometimes it has been so bad that I would pace 16 hours a day when the meds weren't working. In that WED was probably a good thing. Because they were trying to find out what was wrong with me now they did all kinds of tests. My body is in extremely excellent shape. Really remarkable shape considering I am still 40 pounds over weight (think meds).

My regular doctor sent me a note the other day and was actually naming all the organs off and saying that they were all normal. I have read where they say if you walk 20 or 30 minutes a day it can make you physically fit. So on the one hand the lack of sleep is bringing my mind down but the pacing is making my body strong. It is amazing. But the kink is the cancer, the fly in the ointment as the saying goes.

If you made it this far, reading my ramblings, I am actually sitting here contemplating my own death. I think at the first of this thread I said I felt like I was in the calm before the storm. I'm still sitting here in the calm but the storm must be very close. Ironically the storm has been outside most the day here. Autumn has arrived. The storm is here and yet it has not arrived for me but I fear it is close. I have thought for many years that WED would eventually bring me down. I'm thinking now that this dang blockage in my small intestine may do the trick. I have taken loads of doctor ordered laxatives and psyllium but have not had to go for 63 hours (yeah I just added it up). Nothing.

I have no pain and I am going to work tomorrow and act like nothing is wrong. My wife was actually mad that I didn't go to work Friday so I'll go tomorrow and hope the pain doesn't start there. I am in limbo, I can't go and yet the doctor has said what to do and I have done it. He also said go to the emergency if I have any of the symptoms again but I have no symptoms either. I was thinking though, to try to get to the point that maybe it is the WED that will get me after all. Maybe the WED because of lack of sleep, thus the lack of my body being able to repair itself, has caused my cancer. The surgery to fix me caused scarring which caused my small intestine blockage, along with the methadone I have to take for WED, that makes constipation, thus making it even worse.

I need to go to bed in a few minutes but I am scared. I don't know if I am afraid of death as much as I am afraid of pain. My attack Thursday was many hours of pain and the worse vomiting ever. I don't want to go through that again yet I don't see how it is not going to happen now. It just plan isn't working. I have taken multiple laxatives over the last 2 days, a couple of times a day plus that psyllium fiber. Normally just one laxative would be enough, nothing. I am afraid of not getting to the emergency room until my intestines burst and then I will have fecal matter all over my insides, what a gross ugly way to die. Maybe I'll have a nice bowel movement tomorrow morning and everything will be rosy. I guess I can always hope. I have lived every moment today. Not that I have done much today. My wife and I have been watching episode after episode of Breaking Bad for the past week. We are up to season 5. Our son told us to try it out, so we did and got hooked on it. So we watched several of those, worked outside a little bit, played some snooker, played with my pinball machine, cleaned up a little. We just hung out but I looked at everything I did from a different perspective, like it could be my last time to waste time. I enjoyed it, wasting time. Hopefully tomorrow I can come back and say it all worked out in the end. Pun intended.


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