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Swelling stomach, heart racing, stomach problems - episodes
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Swelling stomach, heart racing, stomach problems - episodes

I have started having "episodes" where my abdomen swells and distends greatly and I have other symptoms as well - gas, diahrrea, general pain in stomach, heart racing, and this last time, I ran 102 fever, chills, aches, and my blood pressure and heart rate increased. I went to ER and had a CT scan of the pelvic area.  The only thing it showed was free fluid.  Last month when I had a similar attack I went to my gyno and had an ultrasound and it showed nothing but free fluid.  I am going to a gastro doc this week, but it is hard to know if it is gyno related or stomach related.  So, we are trying to rule out everything else before I go back to my gyno. I keep thinking it is gyno related because the two episodes I have had happened exactly 30 days apart which tells me it might be related to my cycle. A few years ago I had a very large ovarian cyst that ruptured and I ended up in the hospital.  I have also had endometrial ablation due to the polyps I had in my uterus and therefore I do not have a period anymore, but I still go through my cycle. I know I have scar tissue in my uterus due to that surgery.  Are there any ideas of what could be causing this swelling of my stomach, my heart pounding and stomach problems? I am glad the ultrasound didn't show anything, but I am surprised too.  Could I have ovarian cancer and the ultrasound and CT scan not show anything on my ovary? I also had an ultrasound of my gallbladder and that was fine.  Please help!  Thanks so much.
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Dear MFoley,

it sounds like you are getting a good evaluation. you have had an ultrasound and a CT scan. I take it that these tests did not show any ovarian cysts, masses, or growths at the present time.

There has been tremendous anxiety about ovarian cancer since the newspapers picked up on a 2004 report that retrospectively, women with a diagnosis of ovarian cancer had a year of symptoms including bloating, swelling, and a feeling that something was wrong. The message of that study was that if women have those symptoms, they should be evaluated . The evaluation recommended was exactly the evaluation that you have had. The additional recommendation was for a CA 125.

Now x rays are not perfect. If symptoms persist, the next step is a laparoscopy. But you are right to look for other causes as well. Most women with these symptoms have an intestinal disorder such as the new development, lactose intolerance, diverticulitis (an inflammation of the large intestine), and certain infections of the intestine.

Heart racing can be due to many issues such as:  anxiety, a cardiac problem, drug related (use of caffeine or certain herbs), anemia and so on.

My only question for you to ask your doctor about is what free fluid on the ultrasound means. usually this is a sign of ovulation. The ovary bleeds a little when the egg pops out. this hurts, the ovary bleeds. the blood in the abdomen is irritating and give a sensation of pain and bloating. this usually lasts 2 to 3 days each cycle. if the fluid seen on the ultrasound is excessive and does not go away, that is another reason to consider a laparoscopy.

take care
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Thank you so much - that helps me a lot as I move ahead and have further tests.  It is just so weird how swollen my stomach still is.  I think they are considering diverticulitis.  Even though I am only 34 and that isn't common for my age - the symptoms may be consistent.  I will find out more about the free fluid.  The ultrasound and CT scan so far have not shown any cysts.  Thank you again!
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