Thursday, October 21, 2010

Unhappy Tummy

If you have read my recent previous posts you’d know that I have been having some real gut problems over the last couple of months. This all came to a head a week ago. I had my regular appointment with my Dr and while I was there I had some kind of attack or something. I suddenly felt like I was going to faint, pins and needles, sweating etc … it was yucky. My blood pressure was fine and so was my blood sugar, so don’t really know what exactly happened. My Dr did order some more gut related tests for me though. When I got home I felt totally drained and nauseous and went to bed. That was a week ago and I have been virtually bed ridden since, I didn’t even manage a shower until today.

The tests I had were for Helicobacter, pancreatic function and parasites. When the test results came back I was positive for all of them. The inflamed pancreas was no surprise because this has been a chronic issue for me for the last 3 years. I have seen several gastroenterologists and had scans, xrays, colonoscopy, endoscopy and although the results always show an inflamed pancreas all the Dr’s are at a loss to explain why and they all have said go away for 6 months and see if it settles down. Clearly it hasn’t.

The parasite is Blastocystis. I had it once about 2 years ago before I had CFS and it made me feel like death even then so it must be having a big influence on my current level of functionality.

Helicobacter is something that I really knew nothing about other than that it was what causes stomach ulcers. Apparently it is known for causing extreme fatigue and muscle weakness in some people. It has also been linked to migraines, food intolerance and of lots of other chronic illnesses. So, I am extremely pleased that we discovered I had this. While I am not getting my hopes up it is possible that once I get rid of this I may improve significantly and maybe not have to spend 24hrs a day in my apartment. How exciting would that be!!!!

I have today started treatment for the Helicobacter, it’s a combination of antibiotics and acid lowering medication that you take for 7 days. Once this s sorted then I can treat the Blastocystis parasite. The pancreas issue I think I will just have to live with. I have noticed that it usually only gives me trouble when I have other gut stuff going on, I guess it gets irritated or something. So maybe it will just settle anyway once I clear up these other problems.

I still feel really really unwell, totally crashed, in fact I am sleeping around 20 hours a day!!! I know, unbelievable. Hopefully in a few weeks my gut will be happier and the rest of my body will perk up. Just the thought of that is really making me grin :P

If anyone else has had any experience with any of these things please leave me a comment and let me know your experience.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Grow your own Mushrooms

I am still right at the beginning of my treatment for Candida. I have been banging on about this for weeks and week so sorry for yet another post about it. I am having some issues. As time goes on I am seeing just how bad this Candida/yeast problem is for me. To recap quickly I started taking Nystatin which is an antifungal medication probably 2 months ago, It made me soooo sick because of the die off that I had to stop taking it within days. It was just way to harsh for my poor little body to deal with. So after consulting with my Doctor I decided the best course of action was to go on a strict anti Candida diet for a few weeks so that it could start to die off naturally in it’s own time.
I have been on that diet now for maybe a month and I have noticed 2 main things. My energy levels have been running at close to zero, my guess is that with no sugar in my diet my fuel reserves are just not getting replenished. The other thing is that I can visibly see and feel Candida die off happening. It’s like the dying yeast is trying to escape my body anyway it can, and it is now evident that it is spread throughout my body not just in the gut. I have a sinus infection that will not settle, I have fungus leaching out through my toe nails (gross) and I have dozens of huge pimples appearing all over my body, oh and lots of itching, especially on my back.
I saw my Doctor again last week and we decided it was time to try the Nystatin again and start with a low dose. A week ago I took one 500 000 unit capsule and the next day I felt fluey and upset bloated stomach but not too bad. I waited one more day and then took one more capsule and have just felt like death ever since. The die off is so extreme I cannot possibly continue with the Nystatin but it has highlighted to me just how important it is that I get this Candida out of my body.
I am trying to stay positive but when I feel so sick and have such overwhelming fatigue I can’t help but slide into that dark place. I am usually pretty good at letting myself feel it for a short time and then pulling myself out of it. I am having trouble this time because if feels like it has been literally months now since I have had an ok day.
I think the answer is to ditch the Nystatin and try one of the natural alternatives that work slower and should be more gentle on the body. The problem with that is that it will most likely take a lot longer to get rid of the Candida so I will be feeling like crap for longer …. But there is no way I can tolerate the extreme die off symptoms.

I am sick of complaining …. One of these days I will post something cheerful and uplifting, I promise :)