Severe Episodes - Nausea, increased heart rate, diarrhoea, gnawing/burning stomach
I really am desperate for help. I have never felt so helpless & scared in my life. I know it's a long read, I'm hoping you will be patient with me.
For 2 years, I've been experiencing what I refer to as attacks/episodes which last generally between 5 - 7 days. They are horrific to say the least. Whenever I describe the symptoms, they don't sound nearly as bad as they feel. The feeling truly is horrible.
I generally first experience abdominal distention followed by severe nausea in my upper stomach. It’s also very tender and feels disgusting inside. It's like a gnawing sensation but the nausea is so bad I don't wanna move, when I do turn on my side, I feel even sicker. At the same time my heart rate increases to about 100 – 120. I lose my appetite completely, I cannot eat anything, I can't drink at all. My stomach is soo stirred up I just want to throw up but I can't. I can feel my heart throughout my body, throbbing & together with the nausea and gnawing its impossible for me to sleep. I feel completely unwell and as though I am going to die. I shake, feel clammy, cold and just plain unwell. I feel extremely helpless and taken over by this uncontrollable feeling. I also experience severe crying spells, and just want to die. From the minute this sensation of nausea happens I don't sleep one minute. When I close my eyes, my thoughts, whatever they may be, go from normal for the first 5 seconds, to strange nonsensical thoughts the next. This is immediate as soon as the first symptom occurs. It all happens together. For example I'll close my eyes thinking of whatever thought, let's say cooking and the next thing there's a car in the ocean with someone and then we're painting on a wall and there's hand prints on the mail box in a driveway. Just complete irrational thoughts that frighten me. Then all of a sudden I'll get this chest thud or strong gnawing wave like feeling and it will force me to open my eyes. It's like it scares me into opening my eyes and I just cannot pass that stage to get anywhere near sleep. This happens repeatedly for 5 - 7 days. In other words, I don't get a second of relief from these symptoms. I don't get a second of sleep, I can't tolerate ANY liquids at all, and I definitely can't take food and I feel sooo incredibly unwell. I'll open my eyes and this wave of unwellness will just keep coming over me. My mucus changes consistency and I actually somewhat feel poisoned or toxic. Doctors think I'm a mental case as soon as I mention feeling poisoned, they tell me that I'm not poisoned and I keep explaining that I know that it's just how I FEEL! It's a systemic response. My entire body goes under this acute attack and nothing works. Xanax doesn't help, nothing helps!
I've been to the emergency room so many times it's not funny. Multiple hospitals, multiple times. The diagnosis is usually either anxiety or Gastro because most of the time with this comes diarrhoea non stop and I am often given litres of fluid. Deep down I don't believe it is, I just don't understand how anxiety can cause symptoms consistently for 5 - 7 days and not provide any relief at all.
The other thing is these "attacks" don't come on after any stressful event. They are so random and spontaneous I can't pinpoint it.
I know I do suffer from anxiety, I often feel strange generally. I have had a mucus problem for a while, maybe a year or so where I have constant sticky phlegm in my throat, and a cool cold mint sensation in my Oesophagus. I've wondered for a while what's causing this sensation & often have food coming up like reflux. I often worry that it’s not some parasite that has completely infected me and taken over my stomach
Most of my problems started a couple years back when I went to my GP saying I didn't feel well. She ordered some tests and soon enough after a gastroscopy was performed, it was found that I had Oesophagitis as a result of candida in my Oesophagus. I was sent to an ID specialist who thought I had HIV. This test was negative twice, and I was treated with Fluconazole for 7 days. In the mean time my obsession with googling begun. I am very thorough and overanalytical and like to make sure I know everything there is to know. Well, I spent hours upon hours researching and googling candidasis and was completely terrified by what I was reading. I thought I was dying and that the doctor's were missing something. I was convinced I had a fungal blood infection and became paranoid by it all. I spent hours upon hours googling and often convinced myself I had things that in retrospect I couldn't have, because I'd already be dead. I also convinced myself that doctors were wrong as they often had no answers and that I would be the rare one with the illness that kills me and them misdiagnosing me as I found they're approach blaze and very tip of the iceberg, in other words not very thorough and in depth.
I spent hundreds & hundreds of dollars on supplements & natural anti-fungals because I wanted to battle candida completely & from my reading believed that it would take more than the fluconazole. I was convinced Candida had taken over my body. So I started on multiple antifungals including garlic, grapefruit seed extract, oil of oregano oil, caprilic acid, coconut oil, olive leaf extract, black walnut hulls amongst a million others. What I realised is when I would take some of these things I would experience the "attacks/episodes" that I am experiencing now. I googled some more and found that it could be die off and panicked even more because that would mean the die off was so severe it was killing me. I would end up in the ER everytime as I would experience the same symptoms. I became convinced I had systemic candidiasis and that it would kill me. It hasn't killed me but my tongue is always white which makes me feel that it is a problem and just gives me more anxiety.
Now I've started to wonder whether it's a parasite, and I had wondered this in the past. I would spend hours upon hours googling to try and find the answers that I wasn't getting from doctors. Now here I am suffering these severe attacks. I have just come out of one today and always feel a sense of doom for days post the attack, then I come back to "normal".
My symptoms during an attack lasting 5 - 7 days with no relief;
- severe debilitating nausea
- rapid heart rate (100 - 120 + beats per minute)
- immense sense of impending doom
- severe anxiety
- intense crying spells
- cold hands and feet
- unable to close my eyes due to "tripping out", dream like state whilst still awake just with closed eyes
- gnawing burning sensation in Oesophagus, upper stomach
- feeling like I'm dying
- unable to function
- completely overcome with this feeling
- convinced I am poisoned or toxic because of something in my stomach
- throat/mouth mucus changes consistency
- whiter than usual tongue
- slight fever according to doctors
- diarrhoea or extremely loose bowels 20 + times per day and night (small amounts each time)
I have a history of bulimia nervosa, I used to throw up everyday for 4 years, sometimes up to 5 - 10 times per day. So I have convinced myself that the eating disorder has created holes in my stomach and I have leaky gut and no one can find anything. I have had multiple gastroscopies since the candidiasis diagnosis and there is no candidiasis and no other medical conditions. They haven't found helicobactor or anything else. They said my stomach looks perfect.
I was hospitalised & admitted, the thought was that I have a psychosomatic illness or somatoform disorder. In my head I feel everyone is missing it and not doing their job properly and it scares me so I spend hours researching online. I feel they are just writing it off as that because they don't know what it is or they don't believe it’s that severe and I am really really frightened.
I'm scared and keep saying to my boyfriend when it happens that I want to die, I just don't want to live like this when any minute it could happen again and when it does it is so bad I cannot tolerate it. My heart feels like it is under soo much pressure for soo long. The last time I was admitted they thought I had a heart condition so now I have to have more tests on my heart, but initial tests I've had in the past couple years show my heart is fine. It goes to show how severe I am for the medical team to think I had a heart condition
Tests so far;
- Gastroscopy x 4
- Colonoscopy x 1
- Multiple blood tests (FBE, Liver Function, ESR, Vitamin B12, Iron, IGG Subclass, TSH, Porphyria urine test, stool ova/parasite test x 3, blood cultures (standard and fungal), Quantiferon Test, Bordetella pertussis serol, mycobacteria culture, sputum mcs, c reactive protein, HCG, Urea, Elec and Creat, Folate Red Cell and Serum, Glucose Random, Haemoglobin A1c, Lymphocyte Subsets, Syphillis (syphilis) Serology, Vitamin D, HIV, Packed RC Volume, Glucose Fasting, Tryptase, Helicobacter Urea Test, H.Pylori Breath test, Factor IX, XI, XII, Group Screen and Hold, Blood Film Review, Factor 8 studies, Holotranscobalamin, Platelet Aggregation, Anti-T'Glutaminase, Immunoglobulin E, Lupus Anticoagulant, RAST 1 & 4 Allergens, Prolactin, Calcium & Albumin, Magnesium, ANA Screen & Titre, Rheumatoid Factor, CMV Igg Serology, Coagulation profile, Hep B Core Ab, Hep C Antibody, Porphyrin, Lipase)
- Stool tests for parasites/ova test x 2
- Multiple chest x-rays
- Ultrasound Abdomen
- Brain MRI
- Sputum tests
So my brain which is constantly analysing has become paranoid that from bulimia I have damaged my stomach and as a result I have severe gastritis or inflammation/leaky gut which is causing "toxins" from parasites to release and cause me such intense symptoms. I really don't know what to believe or what to do.
I am seeing a psychiatrist but no diagnosis yet at all. I have tried SSRI's in the past but react badly to them.
I have spent hours trying to find people with my symptoms, but can't find anyone which is making me worse. It's scaring me to death because I am convinced this will kill me and I will be a victim of a "misdiagnosis" or a "rare illness"
My mother thinks it is psychological and that it is beyond me. That it is more like Dysautonomia, and that my autonomic nervous system is creating this havoc in my body and that it's not medical.
I am stuck and I need help and I am even feeling anxious about the answers I might get because I don't want to hear that it is something I suspect when doctors don't believe in parasites causing such severe symptoms or candida but I can't take anything for detox because it nearly kills me every time without fail. Prior to my candidiasis diagnosis and googling, I never experienced these symptoms. Deep down I am hoping that it is all psychological and not medical but I want to know either way so I can treat it! I'm desperate and would really appreciate all your help and advice.
Once the attack passes the symptoms dissolve and I am ok again. My mucus comes back, the nausea passes and my heart rate reduces. I don't have that unwell feeling until the next attack.
Have you asked your Medical doctor for a referral to a therapist or a therapist who is running a group for anxiety sufferers....In a group, you will hear many stories and gain some ideas about your own recovery. I do wish you the very best of luck
Anxiety can come with a very long list of possible symptoms and you do have many of them.
At first I was thinking an ulcer but if you've had several scopes done it would have shown that.
Can you say what meds you've taken for your anxiety and depression? And also, how much time did you give them? The first week or so on a new med can be kind of hard. Nausea, headaches, feeling a little strange. If you hang in there though these side effects usually do go away.
You said Xanax did'nt help but there are other anti anxiety meds you can try. I think it would be a good idea to talk to your Dr about a long acting anxiety med so you'll stop having the attacks.
I feel so bad for you because I know what anxiety feels like, most of us here at this forum do. I understand the nausea and other horrible symptoms when a panic attack hits.
We're here to listen and help anyway we can.
Thank-you for your reply. I have tried Zoloft, Effexor (severe reaction - blacked out my blood pressure dropped and I felt incredibly unwell), Lexapro, and Citalopram. The SSRI's caused severe bruising all down my legs, I was made to discontinue use. My heart rate was also increased to higher than usual and I felt like I was high. I also tried Moclobemide but noticed no difference.
I have tried diazepam, xanax, valium and clonazepam. I was also give one dose of Olanzapine in the ER as they thought I was having a psychotic episode. I wasn't, but it knocked me out completely for a few hours.
You're very welcome. I just wish I could be of more help to you.
I see that you've tried alot of meds. I'm wondering if you would be alright if you were started on a very low dose? In my opinion, some Drs can start their patients on to high a dose, they get terrible side effects and quit taking it.
I read over your post again and I don't see that you're in any kind of therapy. If you're not, I would highly recommend it. Find a therapist that does CBT. Many people do very well with that kind of therapy.
OMG, I am so sorry to hear of your pain. Recently I have had an issue with not being able to sleep (perhaps 1 or 2 hrs a night) and while this has been bad (for me) I have had none of the issues you describe, nor for the length of time. I have nothing to offer you in the way of solutions or advice, but I will say this: You are a very strong person to have gone on this long and while I am sorry for your pain I have to stand in awe of your strength. (I myself have been considering a much less honorable solution.)
You truly are a strong person and I wish you the very best of luck as it really may take that before you find your solution.
I have had many things you had for some amount of time. So, I feel that I should share it with you.
The thing where the mind wanders off to many unconnected thoughts which are doomed. I have had it. It felt terrible. It became OK for me. So you ll also feel well and all these will go. You will lead a happy fruitful life. I think u r only my age if 87 in Monika87 is your dob.
The episode on diarrhea and vomiting is related to repeated food poisoning. Change your place. Move. Shift your job. Go to a different climate. It ll stop.
The body is very good in curing itself, in attacking the invaders. If you really want to know if you are being treated properly you should have a doctor degree yourself. Since that is not possible, the next best thing is to search for a good doctor. Not hospital. Doctor. One who many people vouch for. I know a doctor who gave no medicine to my friend once he found out what the problem is. Simply nothing. He said she ll get well on her own. And she did. Once you found your good doctor. You'll be okay.
The cutting edge is not available in Google. The cutting edge, the depth of knowledge in technical matters is available inside institutes and companies only. Just try googling out something specific in your field of study. U won't find it.
If you need emotional support you can watch in YouTube with search term sadhguru. It helped me.
Your body is the essence of natural selection of ten thousand lifetimes. I m sure it can handle what is thrown at it. When you feel terrible try this. Imagine that you are not undergoing this but watching from above what you are undergoing. That distance will help ease the pain and suffering. Bless you.
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