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Avatar universal

Stomach fluttering, constant coughing from stomach, tired, irregular bowels.


About 2 years ago i had what felt like a fluttering feeling just below the hard boney bit where your ribs meet, which lasted a few days.  I didn't think any more of it until May of this year when it returned- and this time- it hasn't gone!

I saw a gastroenterology specialist at my local hospital after i had vommited a small amount of blood.  My g.p initially sent me to a+e due to the blood- they did a full blood test set and an x-ray- nothing showed up.  

So i was referred to the gastro doctor.  He put it down to irritable bowel syndrome- which i thought explained my irregular bowel movements e.g one day soft, next day constipated.

I changed my diet- more fruit, less fizz, some of those pre/probiotic drinks etc etc.

The best way i can describe the pain in my chest is to say that it is similar to how letting air out of a balloon would be.  Over the past few months it has started to get painful at times, and i constantly feel like i have a burp stuck.

It is also bad at night time- i have always slept on my front or side - and i can't do that because this fluttering/ palpitation becomes persistent- and worse still if i'm on my stomach.  It is making it difficult to sleep.

Are these all the symptoms of IBS still??

If so, apart from diet and exercise and stress relief, are there any forms of natural remedy that people have used to help with IBS??

If not consistent with IBS anymore then please feel free to offer suggestions on what i need to be saying to my g.p who keeps saying IBS to me.

16 Responses
Avatar universal
IBS should be a diagnosis of exclusion, meaning thorough testing for more serious orders should be performed.  Endoscopy, colonscopy, etc... What type of testing have you had done?  Sorry, but I think doctors use the term IBS rather loosely for a very complex range of symptoms as we are all different.  I would be wary of a doctor who labels you with IBS so soon.  Tiredness can be a sign of anemia.  Have you had bloodwork done?  Bleeding in the stomach can cause anemia.  A good doctor should look for the underlying cause of anemia if present.
Avatar universal
Have you tried neutralising the gas in your stomach?
alka seltzer can do that,except it contains salt,chewing gum would make more saliva and it contains bicarbonate which will neutralise gas.
It sounds like you have too much gas.
Avatar universal
Hi Shang.  Carbonated drinks, alcohol intake, poor diet can cause all of the things you are talking about,  but not always (and I don't know your diet history, your weight, etc.) IBS is used a lot to diagnose nonspecific complaints (and many times it's used loosely.)   Anyone ever seen a hiatal hernia.  Done a barium swallow - (you have to drink a barium solution and then they x-ray you)?  
You are having pain in an area that could mean hiatal hernia, or -- you could also have some liver enlargement going on for some reason.  The "balloon" sensation at night and it interferring with sleep and the fluttering sensations can also be associated with a hiatal hernia OR a prominent liver (enlarged liver).  Has anyone (doc) palpated your liver recently?  An enlarged liver can be felt by the doctor on exam, but they MUST palpate your liver while you are lying flat, tell you to take a deep breath, let it out, and they feel for the liver edge.  ANy recent labs done on you?  

If it were me, and I had his pain and was getting more uncomfortable at night with it, I would want to be worked up with a new set of labs, and I would want them to rule out any liver problems.  IBS could be causing all of this, too, but you deserve to have any liver problem ruled out.  

If you ever vomit anymore blood  (could also be a sign of liver problems) someone needs to order an upper GI (endoscopy) on you, for sure.  It's a scope that is passed down the throat to the stomach to look at the lining of the esophagus.  

Best of luck.
Avatar universal
Cheers folks for the replies.

When i ended up in a+e they did a full blood work and a chest x-ray.  his was back in June of this year.  All came up negative- but got the referral to the Gastroenterologist who said IBS.

The fluttering feling, which does get quite painful, is regular now, and does leave a slight feeling of breathlessness which will lead me to cough quite a bit.

I have done the things that the doc said, in terms of changing my diet, having the yoghurts, no more stress than the average person anymore.  I would have thought that had it been IBS, with these changes in place, it would at least start to become a little better.

I did have an open appointment with the Gastroenterologist, and i now have an appointment for 8th February.

Is there anything you think that i should be saying or asking??

Avatar universal
Hi shang.  Yes, there are questions you can ask.

Tell him the fluttering and balloon sensation are still there (or have gotten worse), and that you're worried.  (By the way, a chest x-ray does not have the capability of identifying liver problems or a hiatal hernia or anything going on in your GI tract.)  

Ask him if he thinks your liver is OK.  Ask him if he feels ANY enlargement of your liver.  Ask him if your liver function tests are all OK and if your CBC is all OK   (all within normal limits).    

Ask him if it could be a hiatal hernia.  Ask him if he thinks you need to have an endoscopy  (also called an upper GI).  
Ask him if he thinks an upper GI would show anything that might be there.

This could be indeed by IBS,  but - you want make the doc aware that you are worried and that you want to make sure nothing is going on  (and those questions will be good questions to ask him.)

Let us know how it goes.  Good luck.
Avatar universal
I have been suffering with fluttering sensations for years.  Mine strikes right between my breasts or a bit lower.  I can go months without one; right now I am on day 4 of having them all day long.  It is very frustrating.  I too have had various heart tests over the years.  I do have a hiatal hernia but no doctor will come out and say that you can have this fluttering sensation from it.  In fact, when I suggest it, they look at me like I am crazy.  I get the speech about how there are many different types of "palpitations" and this could be one of them.  I have had episodes so severe that they scare the heck out of me and I end up in the E.R., get hooked up to all the heart monitors, but nothing shows. So it makes me believe it's the hiatal hernia, but that doesn't help me deal with the discomfort.  It still scares me when it happens so frequently.
Avatar universal
I also have a fluttering sensation in my stomach sometimes followed by a tightness in between my breats - I've had the endoscopy and nothing showed up - sometimes gas-x helps, sometimes not.
Avatar universal
This could be alot of things. Heart. stomach, esophagus, para esophageal hernia caused by, (stomach being shoved up into the chest due to be over weight, wearing belts or wastebands to tight, coughing to hard or to much, seizures), vegus nerve, gastro-paresis( suggish or paralized stomach)(very common ailment causes by diabetes, meds, surgery, aging). etc.
The best thing to do is to do a complete blood workup, endoscopy/colonoscopy, and get your heart checked. These are for starters. Then go from there. If the doctor can't find anything, its most likely nerve endings.  I am speaking from exerience and have been through all of this.  
Also know that the brain and the stomach are neurological and very much connected. The brain controlls everything including our stomachs. Take for example, vertigo. Everyone  knows that it is considered ear and brain, yet you get nausea in your stomach.  I have pain in my stomach and for sure I have a seizure.  
Something else to consider: Motor sensory and the brain.  They play on each other. I have a rare seizure disorder where someone just touches me and within 10 seconds,I will have a seizure. Thats all it takes. I can be in a store and someone will be walking behind me 6 feet away.  I can feel their energy on my skinon my back and it will cause a seizure with in seconds.    
I get a pain in my hip and it causes a seizure.  Some things are just unexplained and you may not find an answer now but maybe down the road but the important thing is to get the serious things excluded.  

The body is very complicated but you need to rule out the most important things first.  
Avatar universal
I have the exact same symptoms. My doctor told me it was probably acid reflux. At the time I just had this fullness in my stomach where I felt I could not eat. That everything just kind of got stuck there. Now I have that fluttering sensation also. Drives me crazy. It almost feels like I need to burp or hiccup but can't. From everything I have read I am pretty convinced it is a hiatal hernia. It is always worse after a cold when I have done a lot of coughing. It may last a couple of weeks and then go away. Eventually I will get to the doctor and maybe get a real diagnosis!
Avatar universal
I want to leave you a message.  I was posting a long dissertation for you and accidently deleted it and I have to run.  will get back to you.  
Avatar universal
I am back.  Anyway, as I was saying, you have the classic symptoms of gastroparesis delayed stomch emptying or paralized stomach.  I will tell you how or why.  you say you have acid reflux and fullness in your stomach and you really dont' feel like eating.  
What is happening is your stomach is not pumping like it should in order to move your food out.  It then sits for sometimes for days and starts to rot.  This causes acid to buld up and when food piles on top of food, the acid has no where to go but back up in your throat.  So yes you have acid reflux and for a good reason.  There are some things you can do.  www.jacksongastroenterology.com.  gastro doctors use this website for diet for gastroparesis.  Follow it closely.  Do not use Step 1 longer than 3-5 days.
Another thing you can do and you may of heard of this.  But it is actually true. 1 tbs. apple cider vinegar and 8 oz. of water after each meal.  It helps break down the food and helps it digest better. Yes it is a bit gross but you get used to it.  It might upset your tummy for about 10 minutes and then you start to feel better.  You will actually feel hungry by time to eat again.  
Dr. Rosenthal, an international spokesman on health has nothing against it.  He didnt recommend using it for your main source of  treatmeant, however, he still did not oppose to useing it.  They are actually doing major research on the use of apple cider vinegar.  It shows very promising news.  Thousands swear by it.  I do too.  I was using every med there was to try to help me.  I am severely paralyzed.  It causes nausea and vomiting.  Your food can get backed up so back you can end up in the emergency room.  IT is painful and gives a general overall ill feeling.  Apple cider vinegar was a life saver for me.  I know another lady who was in  serious condition and in the hospital over this,.  She too used this alternative and is doing wonderful.  
You can test for gastroparesis by doing a delayed stomach emptying test.  You eat an egg, toast that is laced with iodine.  It is a three hour test but they can tell you how bad yours is.  I have had food in my stomach 3-9 days later.  And I know becuase I knew when the last time I had popcorn.  I was still tasting it days later.  popcorn, corn on the cob, fibrous veg. and friuts are really touch on this.
YOu could also have a hiatal hernia with it.  but your biggest culprit is your stomach.  
The problem with taking pump inhibitors(nexium, prilosec)etc, is that it kills of the natural acid your body produces to break down your food.  Your body needs this.  There are two kinds of acid in your stomach.  One is natural acid, the other is the acid that developes from food rotting in your stomach. If we kill off the natural acid we don't have acid to break down the food.  Apple cider vinegar drink will break down your food, allowing the natural acid to do its job.  Also, makesure you keep your bowells cleaned out.  Otherwise you will get so backed up and then voila, fulness and yuky feeling.  
This stuff is horrible.  It just makes you feel so sick.  And one day, you will have something get hung up and end up doubled over.  It takes me 2-3 hours to stop feeling like I m going to pass out.  Then I will throw up and  feel instantly better.  Its horrible.  IT can put you in the emergency room.  So talk to your doctor about this.  They will probalby want to give your Reglan.  Its bad,  causes so much neurological symptoms.  
I drank my first glad of vinegar and water and never took another nexium or domperidome.  I was able to go cold turkey.  I can always tell when my stomach is out of wack again because I get a burnng in  my throat from acid.  When the stomach clears out, the acid goes away.  You shouldn't hve acid mroe than two days a week.  
And yes, I also have a hiatal hernia and have had 2 nissins to fix it.  Take my word for it, you have a classic gastroparesis.  By the way,  i was spending 150.00 a month.  now I only spend 52 cents a month and feel better.  It cant hurt you. generally does not effecgt your meds.  I is a cheap fix. try it and see if it helps..  everyone is different.  all i am saying is that I have it bad and this was a life saver.  
also, know that this condition will keep your blood sugars running a little high.  when i have the fullness, that is when my blood sugar is high.  you want to get this under control.  you are at risk for diabetes.  stay in touch.  any ?'s, you know where to find me.
Very informative thanks Sammie!
Avatar universal
just read what you are saying about you stomach i have been having different problems for years now  but about 3 monthes ago  i started having a quirver in my stomach noe it has  turned into a spasum where i have to rub my left side of my stomach to make it go down. i also have had all the upper lower g i stuff i care to have. no signs of cancer no ulcers 3 years ago had my hiatial hernia repaired  i feel desperate if i move a way it can happen or i can be standing still and it happens.kathy
Avatar universal
Wht people dont realize is that the Vegus Nerve is the biggiest cultprit.  It is a major nerve that  comes down from the brain and splits off into two different two nerves.  One is attached to thr heart and the other is attached to the stomach.  They play on eachother.  You can get arhithmmia's  in your heart and flutters in your stomach.  It too can bedescribed as a flutter, quiver, pain, anxiety, only its not always anxiety,  it just makes you feel jittery.  Its not a comfortable feeling. In fact it is very debilitation.  On top of it all.  Your stomach is highly attached to your brain and they make each other feel yuky leaving you feeling overall yuky.  A headache is quite commonly started in the stomach.  many people don't know that.  you have vertigo and you feel it in your stomach.  so I am not surprized by what you are describing.  Aslo sometimes the brain just sends out the wrong messge to the wrong parts of the body when it is under stress.  I have a rare conversion disorder.  Believe me I know about this.  And you don't have to have a conversion disorder to have it happen.  the good news for you is that your tests came out fine.  Miralax will help keep your bowells cleaned out in a healthy way.  Very important to keep things moving with regard to the stomach.  
It sounds like to me you just have an annoying nerve.  I have the same symptoms you described.  I have been told not to worry but just stay on top of colonoscopy and occasion endoscopy  if new symptoms or gets worse. I also have spasms too.  And thats weird considering  gastroparesis is about paralysis.  But I can tell you it's all part of the problem.  Stay in touch.  sammie
Avatar universal
One more thing, if you think it has anything to do with your heart like irregular PVC"S. Go to the emergency room.  Not trying to scare anyone, but for women, a heartburn could actually be a heartattack.  Just dont take any chances.  Our symptoms are sometimes different than men.  We think its just an upset stomach.  so if you have a strange irregular heartbeat and nausea, dont take any chances. get to the emergency room.  
Avatar universal
I had stomach fluttering in my upper right quadrant below the breastbone.  I was worried, so I asked my question on one of the doctor Web sites, where a doctor will respond.  Below is the response I received from the doctor:

What you are experiencing is most likely the gastric contractions and movement of gastric contents into the intestine. This can occur in many women in pregnancy as the enlarging uterus puts pressure on the stomach and upper intestine. It is certainly not a parasite. No parasite would ever make such a noise or sensation in human body. Another possible cause is heart palpitations. I do not think this is urgent, but an examination by a doctor is recommended. It would be appropriate to go to the ER and get checked to allay your concerns.
Avatar universal
I have had chest fluttering since 2002. One Dr said it was panic attacks. The next DR said I had the heliopolori bacteria although the test was negative, he treated me for the bacteria. I felt like a million bucks. Gradually the fluttering came back after a few months. I've had it ever since and it's now 2013. I've had an echocardiogram, 3 EKG's and a halter monitor by several different doctors. Nothing ever showed. I started the chiropractor by 2005. I was going 3 times a week, lost 9 pounds and felt great. Hadnt been going back since then since I moved. My rib went out of place yesterday and this morning my chest went to fluttering like crazy non stop. I had to call in to work because I thought I was having a heart attach. I didn't get much sleep due to my back being out. Then the loose bowels started. The fluttering stopped. I eat and get that heavy feeling in my chest like I have a burp stuck. It's ridiculous and never ending. I have an ulcer to, so when it flutters, a lot of times I take two over the counter Tagament and it usually stops the rest of the day. (I had a prescription but the pharmacist said to save money buy it over the counter and take two to measure up to the script I had.) Hope you can get answers. I too am tired of tests with negative results. Especially the first EKG which is 5 seconds long and showed nothing so he assumed it was a panic attack. Put me on Zoloft and I thought I was going crazy, pharmacist said I'm allergic to something in it. Dry heaves, skin crawling, couldn't sit still, etc. Good luck to you!!
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