I know it has been awhile since my last update. I have just been dealing with the side effect issues that I already discussed however a I may be on the road to getting to the bottom of this.
First, I had my monthly appointment at my Medical Oncologist office on November 1st. I had my normal chemo port flush and blood draws. Simple things to do now. I talked to the doctor and told him I was going to get a 2nd opinion at UCLA’s digestive diseases center. He thought that was a great idea and even knew the doctor I made the appointment with. Other than that, I got my Lupron shot and was on my way.
On November 9th I went to UCLA. I saw a Dr. Weiss who is a Gastrointerologists. I brought all of my MRIs, reports, etc. We discussed what has been going on and what my current GI doctor diagnosed me with. He thought that I may have the radiation interitis and that the section of the large bowel affected was not moving my stool through. But, he stated that will cause the next issue which he believed to be “overflow diarrhea”. He did not think I had bacterial overgrowth syndrome. The root cause of the overflow diarrhea is actually constipation. The stool stops and your body naturally absorbs the water from it. If it sits there too long, it hardens and you become constipated. It is probably doing this in the section that was damaged. So the hardened stool sits there and diarrhea builds up behind it. On occasion, the diarrhea comes past it with force. So not only do I get bloated, stomach pain, back pain, with the constipation, I also get diarrhea that I can’t control. Horrible cycle.
To test this theory, I told him I just had diarrhea that morning. He stated that if I just had normal diarrhea, there should be no stool in my bowels. So we took some xrays. He stated that we have to keep the stool moving so that section can heal. So today I got the xray results, sure enough, I had stool and gas in there. So the constipation was already building up again. So I am taking miralax twice a day and other stool softeners that he prescribed. It seems to be keeping things running. If I get any buildup, I have to take more.
So this isn’t the thing I want to be writing about or having you read about but I have to tell someone! At least I am not posting pictures!!
Anyway, other than all of this, I am continuing the fight.