9.07.2012

Health Update: When things start to turn a corner

I have had so many emails about my SIBO posts (just click "SIBO" in the Labels to read past posts). I have a great update with a significant breakthrough. So if you are here as a fellow SIBO sufferer, or suspect you might have SIBO, keep reading.

As a quick refresher, I have Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth as a result of impaired gut motility (from a serious GI illness in 2010). That lead to IBS symptoms AND food intolerances (a lot of them). So while the food intolerances cause the most severe reaction, the root of the problem is the impaired gut motility. If that's not fixed, then the bacteria might never stay where it needs to: in my lower intestines.

A few months ago I got an email form a woman who had my same issues and was currently cured. CURED. I almost passed out. She's a smarty pants who has a smarty pants doctor. So I took her advice to my doctor, who agreed that this advice was sound. So I started a new treatment.

I took 20 days (2 full rounds back to back) of neomycin. I couldn't afford the Rifaxin this go round because my insurance wouldn't cover it. So Dr. Stein put me on the neomycin and we went from there. At the same time I ordered Motiluim (also known as Domperidone). The Motilium is to get my gut moving. I take it 3 times a day (10mg, 20 minutes before a meal). This encourages the normal cleansing waves and stomach emptying that I used to know and love in days gone by. It started to work almost immediately. Within two days my heartburn was pretty much a thing of the past (unless I eat citrus, or go too long without eating, and then it will persist). And the antibiotic? It did the job. I started to notice a difference about 10 days in to the course.

Let's talk side effects. Well, with any large dose of antibiotics, there are concerns. Neomycin is unique in that it doesn't swim off into your bloodstream. It stays mostly in the small intestine and kills that overgrowth! I knew it was killing bacteria because I was experiencing other symptoms of lack of bacteria (ladies, you know what I mean). And my tummy was a little iffy that whole time (like it is on any antibiotic). But once I was done with the 20 day dosage, I was feeling fine. We were right smack dab in the middle of a huge move, but once we landed ourselves in a new state I sat back and realized I wasn't the same woman I was 20 days prior.

For starters I was about 10 pounds heavier. Which is awesome (I was SKINNY). The Motilum is a drug that is often used for nursing mothers who don't produce enough milk. So it stimulated hormones in my body that made me gain some curves (no I did not actually start lactating). I did miss my period last month, but it's back again like normal this month (sorry for the personal info, guys, but I want to share the side effects, because I was scouring the interwebs for them, myself). I also (ahem) went up a bra size. (My hubby wasn't complaining...) After a month on Motilium, I have evened out (no more weight gain). I notice that I am not experiencing breast tenderness like I was in previous months before my period, which is a plus. So whatever hormonal effects the Motilium is having, my body seems to be tolerating them well. The extra bonus with Motilium is that it reduces nausea. So if your SIBO is causing that, it will help! Motilium is not available in the US, but my doctor referred me to THIS SITE to order in bulk. Motilium is a dopamine inhibitor. And some websites I found claim it can affect mood. This might be the case for some. I'll admit my mood hasn't always been the cheeriest since having SIBO. But I can only imagine I will feel happier and happier as my stomach feels better! And as long as I get enough sleep, I feel mentally fine and dandy.

*As a note, Motilium does have lactose in the TEENY TINY pills I take. I have no problem whatsoever tolerating that small amount. If you have a severe lactose intolerance, there are pharmacies in California that will mix a special batch of lactose-free domperidone pills for you. You just have to Google that.*

So here I am a month after the treatment, and I am really feeling SO much better. No more IBS symptoms at all. I can now eat corn, more fiber, lettuce, nuts, and tomatoes with no issues (I can eat out at Chipotle, and any restaurant who can carefully cook me some chicken and veggies). And on an even happier note, I got seasonal allergies. How is this happy? Because it led me back to my previous allergist in Mesa, AZ who now treats FOOD INTOLERANCES! He uses sublingual homeopathic drops to treat allergies to wheat, eggs, milk, and many more. I responded really well to my past treatments of sublingual serum for seasonal allergies. So I've contacted them again in hopes of treating and improving my food issues. I will be posting more info on that as things develop. Fingers crossed and double crossed. For information on that, visit HERE. (They also have links for out-of-state patients).

Other updates:
Tried the GAPS diet. No go. Long story, but it wasn't for me.
Tried cabbage juice. Might help a bit, but it wasn't a cure.
Tried natural antibiotics like grapefruit seed extract. Nope. Not powerful enough.
Other things that have helped with symptoms: Iberogast tincture (found on Amazon), Ginger pills or tea. And I have considered taking these highly recommended enzymes, but haven't taken the plunge yet. I also take fish oil, a multi vitamin, magnesium, and vitamin B12 (when I remember to take them.) What has worked for you?

I think that's all for now. If you have any questions, post them in the comments, and I will try to respond. Thanks for all the emails, and if I haven't emailed you back, know that I read your email and posted this just for you! :)

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Christy said...

So so glad to hear you're feeling better!!!!

Kristen said...

Hi Lyndsay!

Thank you so much for posting all the details on your recent treatment here and for the email. I hope to find a good GI who will treat me eventually for this, the one I have now will be fired. THe weight gain is really exciting, and I hear you on that -- I could use some lbs too!

{april kennedy} said...

This is such good news. I'm so happy for you. Think of you often. love to you, april

Anonymous said...

Hi, thank you SO MUCH for this post. I have a question about probiotics. Some people report that when they took probiotics after taking antibiotics, their SIBO came back. What was your experience with probiotics, did you take any or not? It looks like I might have SIBO and I will have to take antibiotics. Thanks again. I am glad you are doing well.

Me said...

Hi. It looks like I might have SIBO and I will have to take antibiotics. I have a question about probiotics. Some people say that if they take probiotics after taking antibiotics, their SIBO comes back. What was your experience? Did you take any?

Thank you SO MUCH for your post. It gives me hope.

Me said...

Hi and THANK YOU VERY VERY MUCH for this post. It looks that I might have SIBO and will have to take antibiotics. You give me hope :)

I have a question about probiotics. Many people say that taking probiotics after antibiotics made their SIBO come back. But doctors recommend probiotics anyway. What was your experience? Did you take any? Thank you - I hope you answer my question.

Anonymous said...

hi,

a have a question about your Neomycin dose.

Thanks for the answer.

Karolina - Poland :)

Anonymous said...

I think Florastor helps with the yeast/candida problems that can occur with antibiotic usage. Get it off Amazon.