I have been reading this site and the IBS book since spring. I stumbled upon Digestive Health Institute while searching for information on Xifaxan which had been prescribed by a gastroenterologist. I became ill (pain which they thought was gall bladder initially) last November after returning from a trip to New Zealand. While not officially diagnosing me with anything in particular, it was clear that the doctor was treating me for IBS, possibly SIBO. I had started the Xifaxan by the time I found this site, so I continued the course of treatment since it seemed like a bad idea to stop taking an antibiotic mid stream. It helped a little, but was not a real solution. Many months (and one visit later) the doctor suggested the FODMAP diet. I agreed to try it, though in reality I had already been following the Fast Tract Diet and protocols with reasonable success for the past few months. After following “FODMAP” (when in reality I followed Fast Tract more closely) for a month, I was again a little better, but I realized that better was still pretty miserable. It seemed to me that there was SIBO, but that there was something more going on as well. In desperation I returned to the doctor and mentioned that something that was really depressing me was the fact that I could not tolerate even a bite of apple without severe bloating (I live in apple country and make really good apple pie, dumplings, and everything else apple). And all other fruits (low or high FP) were becoming increasingly intolerable as well. It set off alarm bells for her since it was all fructose, and she prescribed Flagyl. It’s working! It’s not without side effects, but it’s clearly working. I can eat an entire Honey-crisp apple (a variety that I would bet test super high in sugars) without bloating. In fact I have been pushing the limits while taking the Flagyl (4 days now) and still I am significantly better. Am feeling nauseous as all get out from the medication, but I can survive this to get to a better outcome. I am hoping and praying that the Flagyl is the final answer.
So my point in all this is:
1. … to say thank you! This book and this approach have been a blessing. Clearly I did have an underlying problem before the massive episode of illness following my trip. I have ditched the omeprazole, learned to curb foods that were contributing to the reflux, dealt effectively with the occasional constipation that I’ve had since this trip and learned to be more discerning in taking care of my aging body. Many thanks to Norm and the regular, amazing contributors to this forum!
2. To say, humbly – since I am not a medical professional nor a scientist – that if anyone else here feels that perhaps they are not experiencing the changes they feel they should be experiencing after they have made modifications to their lifestyle, that they consider that they could have parasites. The gastro doctor had checked (stool test) for them early on and when the tests came back negative, that option was dismissed. Months later, I was beginning to have my suspicions (after talking to missionary friends) and was considering going to an infectious disease specialist when I mentioned the increasingly strong fructose intolerance to the gastro doctor. That set off warning bells for her, and 4 days into taking an anti-parasitical, I am beginning to see the light at the end of the tunnel!
3. As a foot note to the story I will add that I think I picked up my little “friends” on a stop-over in Korea on the way back, but regardless I would take the whole wonderful trip to NZ and Korea all over again. I would just be more vigilant and faster to see an infectious disease specialist!