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Fecal Breath Odor
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Fecal Breath Odor

Every 6 months to 2 years I suffer from horrible abdominal swelling, gas, vomiting and fecal breath odor. I have to go to the ER for the pain. These episodes are usually around stressful times like holidays, but I don't believe them to be anxiety-related. I do suffer from mild bipolar disorder and major depression, though, so you never know... I also have GERD and have been under treatment for it for years (prilosec).

I need an answer for this. The pain feels like I am might explode from the abdominal swelling and gas. Last time I was in the hospital, they discarded my stool sample because of its foul odor (but not until I was forced to keep it in my room for several hours.)



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Avatar_m_tn
Actually, if they show up during times of stress, I'd be willing to put money on it being related to autonomic effects from anxiety. I'm also willing to bet that the pain and bad smell are caused by delayed gastric emptying during these times. This is quite common, particularly for people with GERD.

By the way, when you present depression and digestive issues, I'm willing to bet there's some level of anxiety there, since many of the brain functions and nerves are interrelated. (Particularly with the ever important vagus nerve.) Malfunctioning of this nerve (for whatever reason) is associated with GERD, dyspepsia, gastroparesis, and other autonomic effects.

Request during one of those times (or at any time, really) to (a) be referred to a good gastroenterologist, and (b) to have a gastric emptying exam done, to see what the results are. It might be as severe as gastroparesis, and based on your trips to the hospital, it wouldn't surprise me, but I'm also willing to bet you're near the borderline.

In the mean time, fnd a good acupuncturist or holistic physician, and if you're under any anti-deptressants, try to get off of them (with psychiatric supervision, of course). These tend to mess around with digestion as well. If you don't already, also start exercising some, at least an hour a day of fairly vigorous work (though preferably not exclusively running), as this will help improve the GI motility, and improve your mood. Working out with a friend is even better, but even alone is better than not at all.

Good luck!
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Avatar_m_tn
By the way, I never adressed the actual question: the fecal breath smell, pain the stomach, and bloating are all caused by food hanging out in the stomach too long. During times when this is happening, change your diet to stuff that digests very easily, like soft fruits, low-fat foods, and meal replacement drinks, and avoid foods like hard to digest vegetables like broccoli, corn, and cabage; foods with lots of seeds; fatty and fried foods; and high-fiber crunchy cereals like grapenuts.
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603946_tn?1333945439
how about adding fiber choice- I think you can take up to 8 a day- they help me and are a Godsend
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Avatar_f_tn
I agree with all the above stuff.  But I wanted to try to summarize.  It is very good you are so observant about this happening when you are stressed, altho you don't think "that's it."  I suffer from panic disorder.  When I get over the top with my anxiety, same with other people who stress out, the guts kind of lock down.  Wastes slow down, and the more food you put in your mouth, the more you swell up, until you wind up with the hospital and your waste is just totally stuck in there.

Like the second post said, when you start to get nervous, change what you eat to all soft foods, mashed potatoes and gravy, salad with spagetti, applesauce, creme of wheat with milk and sugar, just a little orange juice, stuff like that.  Avoid real cold food and avoid heavy meat dishes.  Drink extra water, walk off your stress, or even do hard exercise where you can bang out your stress.  I like to shadow box.

Then there's meditation techniques, which can be quite varied and simple.  Me, when I get to a point where I don't know what in the world is going on anymore, I sit cross legged in the den where it's very quiet, and look at some glass stuff I have in the window, and then I close my eyes, breathe very deeply and concentrate on the breathing sound, and then empty out my brain except for one thing:  I ask the heavens, "What is really the problem I have right now?"  And lo and behold, the answer comes to me.  Sometimes I'll cry a river when that happens.  Very relaxing and comforting.

I also think your gastroenterologist should change your prescription for your GERD.  I also think they should check out your small intestine, mainly because of the smell you report.
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Avatar_n_tn
I hadn't considered gastroparesis or my vagus nerve. BTW, what is a "gastric emptying exam"? I exercise (walk my dog) about 45 - 60 minutes most days.

A question about your second post: Wouldn't the food have to be beyond my stomach to develop the fecal odor? Also, the smell is the same from what comes out of me at both ends.

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603946_tn?1333945439
gastric emptying is the easiest test I had- eat radioactive scrambled eggs- just tastes like salt then lie on a table a few minutes and yack with the radiologist- I waited around about 30 minutes- he read it right there and said I passed with flying colors- and then another 30 minutes later I had a huge BM- guess it went right thru me.

You know the smell could be blockage or fecal impaction or worst case - I don't even want to think about it- have you googled fecal breath?

have you talked to the docs on here? I have a better relationship with the medhelp dentist on here than with my own dentist in town LOL- well almost
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