Help, I'm In An Abusive Relationship With My Innards
May 3, 2011 12:31 PM Subscribe
I've been a puking, painful sulfur factory for a month and a half. All my test results have been negative, and my GP is stumped. Wondering if anyone's experienced similar and can clue me in about what I have. Warning: Gross.
posted by Gianna to health & fitness (22 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Backstory: Since I was a teenager, I’ve had these weird “attacks” that hit every few years.
It always starts the same way: I start burping up gas that tastes like sulfur / rotten eggs. A few hours later, I get really ill: stabbing lower-abdominal cramps and extreme amounts of gas that I can’t pass fast enough to prevent pain. Over-the-counter gas medications only help a fraction.
Eventually, this is followed by explosive diarrhea and vomiting. Everything coming out of me reeks so strongly of sulfur that the whole house ends up smelling like brimstone. These attacks would only last one-two days. I stopped going to the doctor for them because every time I did, they’d never find anything wrong with me and say it must be a viral infection.
The pain is bad enough that when my daughter came prematurely, I didn’t go to the hospital until I was twelve hours into labor because I thought I was just having another attack of this.
On March 24th, my stepson was visiting his grandmother overnight when he came down with what seemed like food poisoning: vomiting, diarrhea and pain. A few hours after she called to tell me, I got the sulfur burps. Soon I was as bad off as he was... but while he got better in a day, I’m still not over it 41 days later. It’s exactly like the attacks I used to have, but it won’t go away.
Or rather, it won’t stay away. I get violently ill for a day or two, and then I feel better for another day or two, then sick again. Over time, the severity has decreased... I was okay all last week and really thought I was done, then got the sulfur burps last night and woke up puking this morning. I’ve thrown up 14 times today so far. There’s no nausea involved... I just randomly puke, especially if I’ve done something like cough. Chills, exhaustion, etc. It's not awesome.
Five people live in our house, three of whom (toddler daughter, stepson, elderly relative) are with me 24/7 (I homeschool). Only the stepson has ever gotten sick, before I did, and just the once. If this was a contagious virus, it seems bizarre that my toddler hasn’t gotten it, since I have more physical contact with her than anyone and she never met a germ she didn’t want to stick in her mouth.
My husband is showing some symptoms: he’s had cramps and diarrhea off and on for two weeks, but no vomiting or pain, and a few nights ago I noticed that his breath was reeking of sulfur in his sleep.
I have Googled like a madman, and the only thing that seems to fit my symptoms is Giardiasis... however, my stool ova and parasites exam (and every other test they ran on me) came back negative. I think I may have screwed up my sample, though. You probably don't want details on that.
There is zero chance that I am pregnant, and it seems very unlikely that I’m repeatedly food-poisoning myself... all the food in the house has changed, and I was still just as sick the week+ I didn’t consume anything but bottled Gatorade.
Has anyone else had something similar and been treated for it? I have another appointment with my general practitioner tomorrow, but I’m not sure what he can do for me when every test has come back negative. So far he's said it's just a virus and to wait for it to pass. Should I ask for a referral to a specialist, and if so, what kind?
Thanks in advance :)