So, I'm about 23 years of age, average health (honestly, below average lol) and I've been having a stomach pain that's lasted quite a while. I'd say this pain started around 2009, I cant honestly remember if its older than that or not. So anyway, I started having this pain around 2009, didn't think much of it as I am Lactose Intolerant and figured I just need to change my eating habits. The pain started small, went away after a day or so, and only appeared once in a while (2-4 weeks). In 2011 I started Drinking more (do the math, lol) and admittedly went a bit overboard, i.e about 1-2 bottles of brandy (shared with others, mind you) per day. Averaging about 4-7 per week. At the same time I was dealing with a really stressful relationship with a friend. after a few weeks I noticed the pain was intensifying and didn't leave. Every day I'd wake up doubling over in pain. I shirked it off and popped Acetaminophen to pacify it (4-8 pills per day) it intensified to the point I couldn't move and almost passed right out while standing still. I called a friend and had him rush me to the hospital, where I stayed in the waiting room for 8 hours (no joke) wasn't seen or even acknowledged and wound up leaving as the pain subsided. I figured it was triggered by an argument I had with aforementioned friend. The pain went from an average Tummy-ache to a centralized stabbing/burning sensation in one area on my abdomen, in the exact same spot as the pain, I also noticed my abdomen was swollen ( left side, right below lowest rib, about the size of a plum) this swelling has stayed since then, appearing more prominent at times and fading away at times. A few months later the pain had subsided again to a mere tummy-ache, which only peaked as an actual gut-wrenching pain once in a while (1-4 times within a month). It had stayed this way until my newly acquired job. With the start of this new job, I've been under a lot of stress, resulting in me picking up a bad smoking habit. ( peaked around 1 pack per day). Have been employed here for about 10 months now, for the past 9 months my overall health has taken a severe dive. I went through a period where I was so stressed I lost about 20-25 pounds in less than 2 weeks. ( I usually average 165lbs, dropped to 140-145) and haven't seen my normal weight since then.
*Constant Tummy-ache feeling
*Constant Heaviness of Stomach
*Extreme Loss of appetite
*Sudden Weight Loss and inability to gain said weight back
*Often feeling of Dizziness/nausea seemingly out of nowhere
*Disorientation at times
*Sudden migraines that seem to coincide with the stomach pains
*Infrequent bowel movements, yet increased urination.
The pain/pressure intensifies at night and in the mornings. I haven't noticed any specific types of food that trigger/subside the pain compared to any other type of food. Over the past month or so I've had Sushi, Steak, Vegetables, Alcohol (much less than my younger days), fish, chicken, whole wheat, eggs, and so on... so yeah, I've had a pretty diverse diet lately. TUMS used to subside the pain a few years ago back when it was a mere tummy-ache, although, mysteriously TUMS and Pepto Bismol both cause sudden Nausea when ingested nowadays.. I don't use either anymore so I'm unsure the effectiveness of them on the current situation. I stay away from medication of any kind if at all avoidable, so that is to say, I don't take any NSAID's or Aspirin or anything like that which could cause similar symptoms. I haven't vomited anything as a direct cause of this pain ( to my knowledge, as I only tend to vomit when inebriated) and just once has it resembled a tarry/bloody substance. I honestly figured it was due to whatever I had eaten the night before. (went to a party, drank only 2 cups of a weak mixed drink, ate some ralleys, and tried "a legal incense which is most commonly smoked from a pipe to induce a short but intense psychedelic trip" the drug itself had no immediate effect on me (figured it was fake) but nonetheless I Blacked out and woke up covered in this dark black/red vomit that resembled a hell-beast's diarrhea. I had alcohol poisoning (i think) for two days following, where I was constantly vomiting this same substance. I honestly hadn't any clue that it could be an ulcer at the time. thinking back, it does scare me.
I know this post was pretty long, But Its getting to the point where I'm constantly logging into Personal time at work due to this. I want to know whether this could be an Ulcer, and how much it should cost? I live in California, and don't make much more than minimum. i have what i can consider insurance through Cigna, but they only cover up to 1000$ of fees,after which I'm subject to at least 20% of the fees, which from my research could still easily reduce my wallet to a pile of pitiful ashes.
Well, without a detailed clinical evaluation it would be difficult to determine the cause of your symptoms. Possible causes that may need to be considered include GI infections, inflammations, gastritis, GERD, peptic ulcers, GI motility issues, dietary causes, neuro-muscular causes, chest wall inflammation, costochondritis, growths/ masses etc. I would suggest getting this evaluated by a primary care physician initially and depending on the cause diagnosed/ suspected, it can be managed accordingly or specialist care may be sought. Meanwhile you could try taking a glass of cold mild 2-3 times a day and one early morning, avoid taking spicy/ smoked/ hot food including beverages and avoid stress. OTC antacids may be useful for pain relief.
Hope this is helpful.
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