Friday, July 1, 2011

About Me Part I: Diagnostic Journey

I was diagnosed with gastroparesis in 2008.  I've suffered with digestive issues on and off  from the age of 19, shortly after undergoing laparoscopic surgery for endometriosis and ovarian cysts.  At the age of 28, after years of pain and discomfort, a gastric emptying test confirmed mild GP. 
The doctors prescribed me Reglan, which, over a period of 6 months did not help but instead caused severe depression.  I decided to pursue help through a naturopathic doctor who took me off the medicine and replaced it with thyroid medication, high quality vitamins and gluten-free diet (tested positive for gluten intolerance).  The following 6 months I felt amazing, filled with energy and finally pain free.  However, in the spring of 2009 I slowly started feeling the pain and fullness returning.  I specifically recall one day when the intense spasms in my stomach began.  They were even visible on the outside, and looked like something was growing inside me!
My GI doctor suggested I take Domperidone, a motility drug available only outside the states.  After the mental torture I experienced with Reglan I was scared to death to try another and refused.  Instead, I survived on smoothies and broth until my weight dropped so low, 20 pounds, that I ended up passing out in the grocery store and was admitted into the hospital.  Three days of fluids, MRI’s, blood draws, and scopes they again diagnosed gastroparesis, only much worse this time.  With my life on the line I decided to take a chance and try the Domperidone.   I was then sent to a specialist in Seattle to repeat the gastric emptying test and advised to double dose of medication and if condition worsens to consider the gastric neuro-stimulator.
During the next few weeks I was extremely blessed to have support through friends and family.  I actually stayed with friends for awhile that had the time to take care of me by cooking for me and helping to create meal plans that would help me gain weight and strength back.  Many changes occurred over the next 6 months including moving into a new home (more to come about reasons for this), working part-time, counseling with my husband to help us learn to deal with this condition together, and lots of acupuncture!  I regained my weight back while continuing the medication and finally began to feel like myself again.

1 comment:

  1. hi, this is Neelima and I have been diagnosed with gastroparesis and am living with it from past 6 months. but doctors are not able to diagnose the reason for that as I haven't gone through any surgery or illness before. similarly like you I feel bloated to extremes and start burping for hours. what kind of food should I have to avoid fullness