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Online clinic on bowel issues & IBS - Apr 2018

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IBS and Diverticulosis

Postby Guest Posts on Thu Apr 12, 2018 9:11 am

I was diagnosed with IBS 23 years ago. Over past 2 years IBS has been horrendous with chronic bloating & constipation. I have tried everything and nothing works. Could there be something else going on?

I have tried FODMAP diet last year through GP referral and did not work.

I exercise 3 times a week
I walk
I eat loads of fruit which I love & veg
Have fresh foods & cut out processed foods
I take Dulcolax or Constella for chronic constipation

I have had IBD, h pylori tests and both negative.

I have just been diagnosed with diverticulosis in Feb 2018.

I get pained with wind and always have gurgling on left hand side of bowels, can feel it especially at night.

This is now impacting on my work, social life and mental wellbeing as get so tired, sore back and at times brain fog as get so bloated and feels heavy, clothes feel very uncomfortable and I just sleep all the time.

GP just repeats about diet and exercise but do all this and at my wits end!!
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Re: IBS and Diverticulosis

Postby Julie Thompson on Sun Apr 15, 2018 11:42 am


Diverticulosis and IBS is a very challenging situation - the advice for diverticulosis is to have a high fibre diet but unfortunately following this advice can ramp up symptoms of IBS. The low fodmap diet can be useful for some people in your situation - but it is vital to include high fibre content during this process and good fluid intake (this can be increased to 3 litres per day if your doctor has not advised any fluid restrictions.) For others, the low fodmap diet is not useful at all - but we don't at the moment have perfect information who these non-responders are. You haven't stated who helped you with your low fodmap diet.

My advice is to seek a referral to a registered gastroenterology dietitian who can advise you correctly on your situation - if you have not been seen already.

You do not state if you have been tested for coeliac disease - this should be done before a diagnosis of IBS is given, and you do need to include gluten (wheat, barley and rye) in your diet for six weeks before the test is carried out to ensure a definite result. Red-flag symptoms should also be considered. https://www.theibsnetwork.org/have-i-go ... hing-else/

If all these tests have been completed, it is likely that what you are dealing with is IBS and diverticulosis. Unfortunately, societies views on IBS is that it is a 'bit of tummy ache' - this is indeed not the case, and symptoms for some people can be severe. People can also improve their situation if they have a good understanding of the factors influencing symptoms and the advice I give people is not necessarily always diet related.

It is this, learn as much as you can about your diagnosis and seek help from the UK charity for IBS - you are the best person to know what might be helpful for your situation - of course, with help and advice from other healthcare professionals, too. Sometimes psychological interventions can be beneficial for IBS. I am not suggesting that this is what caused your original symptoms or 'symptoms are all in your head', they are genuine and indeed very unpleasant. There is entirely no doubt it can be debilitating living with chronic bowel symptoms - psychology can help you to come to terms with this. Ironically, an act of acceptance and moving forward can also lead to an improvement of symptoms, so please don't discount this as a possible treatment option.


Kind regards
Julie Thompson
Gastroenterology Specialist Dietitian - BSc (Hons) Dietetics

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