Small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO)

Posted by maryannegau @maryannegau, Oct 25, 2018

I’ve been battle SIBO for months now and have tried Rifaxin, Flagyl and antiviral meds. Also have tried Zithromax and am taking Atrantil (an herbal remedy). I can’t eat sugar or carbs or my stomach hurts quite alot. Any suggestions?

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@tiss

So maybe your problem was more reflux than SIBO? I had a massive bowel obstruction and had an emergency right hemicolectomy 2 1/2 years ago which includes removal of 18" of my colon cecum, illeocecal valve, appendix . I developed chronic SIBO and have not been able to get off Xifaxan for any length of time so I am on it daily. I also take Align daily. My dr told me to take a trial off Align and my intestines were a wreck after 4 days. Went back on it and within a few days was fine. Go figure! I think a lot is trial and error.

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I agree, @tiss. It is a lot of trial and error. You are doing a good job managing some difficult digestive problems. I'm glad that you are thinking for yourself and willing to experiment with the doctor's suggestions. Keep up the good work.

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@drpepper

Update: picked up script for Rifaxam ($700 for 30 pills 200mg). Decided to read a bit more before starting the antibiotic. On Atrantil website read that one should not take probiotics while trying to treat SIBO. My ileocecal valve was removed during a sm bowel resection in '99. Started having belching in 2015. Reflecting on my past medical history it was about that time I started probiotics that I started having belching problems. I started (dr recommend) more serious probiotics and belching got worse. Doctor after doctor and suggestion after suggestion e.g. – remove gall bladder, stop cpap use, repair hiatal hernia, and on and on… The site (Atrantil) said taking probiotics was like adding fire to fire. So I delayed the antibiotic treatment and stopped all probiotics. Within 2 days my insane belching was diminished by over 50 % and at this point close to 75 %. I have the Rifaxam on standby but right now I am feeling better than I have in years!..

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I agree. Our systems are complicated. My fingers are crossed.

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@tiss

So maybe your problem was more reflux than SIBO? I had a massive bowel obstruction and had an emergency right hemicolectomy 2 1/2 years ago which includes removal of 18" of my colon cecum, illeocecal valve, appendix . I developed chronic SIBO and have not been able to get off Xifaxan for any length of time so I am on it daily. I also take Align daily. My dr told me to take a trial off Align and my intestines were a wreck after 4 days. Went back on it and within a few days was fine. Go figure! I think a lot is trial and error.

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You may also like Florastor, another probiotic. I take it along Align daily

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@drpepper

Update: picked up script for Rifaxam ($700 for 30 pills 200mg). Decided to read a bit more before starting the antibiotic. On Atrantil website read that one should not take probiotics while trying to treat SIBO. My ileocecal valve was removed during a sm bowel resection in '99. Started having belching in 2015. Reflecting on my past medical history it was about that time I started probiotics that I started having belching problems. I started (dr recommend) more serious probiotics and belching got worse. Doctor after doctor and suggestion after suggestion e.g. – remove gall bladder, stop cpap use, repair hiatal hernia, and on and on… The site (Atrantil) said taking probiotics was like adding fire to fire. So I delayed the antibiotic treatment and stopped all probiotics. Within 2 days my insane belching was diminished by over 50 % and at this point close to 75 %. I have the Rifaxam on standby but right now I am feeling better than I have in years!..

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I am very lucky to have a great GI who is willing to try anything. My old GI never tested me for SIBO and threw up his hands and wanted me on an antidepressant. I told him no, partly because I'm already on an antidepressant. So I got recommendations from friends for new dr and they all raved about this guy (Dr Michael Martin, Tulsa , Ok,) He's great and helped me get on track by tests, medications, and referral to a registered dietician , what a concept! I have to admit I am hoarding all the Xifaxan I can right now because we have superb insurance. I turn 65 in a few years and I am nervous about Medicare paying for it. One step at a time!

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Update: picked up script for Rifaxam ($700 for 30 pills 200mg). Decided to read a bit more before starting the antibiotic. On Atrantil website read that one should not take probiotics while trying to treat SIBO. My ileocecal valve was removed during a sm bowel resection in '99. Started having belching in 2015. Reflecting on my past medical history it was about that time I started probiotics that I started having belching problems. I started (dr recommend) more serious probiotics and belching got worse. Doctor after doctor and suggestion after suggestion e.g. – remove gall bladder, stop cpap use, repair hiatal hernia, and on and on… The site (Atrantil) said taking probiotics was like adding fire to fire. So I delayed the antibiotic treatment and stopped all probiotics. Within 2 days my insane belching was diminished by over 50 % and at this point close to 75 %. I have the Rifaxam on standby but right now I am feeling better than I have in years!..

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I have been all over this forum after doctors told me I had this or that. I was starting to think I was crazy. Then one of my tests showed gastroparesis. Now my new gastro from down state has ruled out everything but now she has zeroed in on SIBO as well as BAM.

Between these two things my symptom list is long. One of my more annoying symptoms is this dang inner vibration that seems to be my stomach not working properly. My hair falls out, I have burning diarrhea then constipation. The Vagus nerve gets irritated setting off anxiety. Weird sweating episodes, light headedness, wright loss, dry skin. Insomnia and incredible fatigue. Low b12, low vitamin D. However they can't figure out my high calcium.

It has been absolutely awful. Doc should be prescribing antibiotics this coming week.

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@bumble81

I have been all over this forum after doctors told me I had this or that. I was starting to think I was crazy. Then one of my tests showed gastroparesis. Now my new gastro from down state has ruled out everything but now she has zeroed in on SIBO as well as BAM.

Between these two things my symptom list is long. One of my more annoying symptoms is this dang inner vibration that seems to be my stomach not working properly. My hair falls out, I have burning diarrhea then constipation. The Vagus nerve gets irritated setting off anxiety. Weird sweating episodes, light headedness, wright loss, dry skin. Insomnia and incredible fatigue. Low b12, low vitamin D. However they can't figure out my high calcium.

It has been absolutely awful. Doc should be prescribing antibiotics this coming week.

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@bumble81, I'm so glad that you and your doctor finally got things figured out as you said, and that you have a diagnosis of SIBO that is possible causing bile acid malabsorption (BAM).

You'll notice that I moved your message to this existing discussion group called "Small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO)" I did this so you can connect with others like @astaingegerdm @sita @jackiem95 @thull and others. Click VIEW & REPLY to read through past posts.

@bumble81, you mentioned that you'll be prescribed antibiotics. When will you start and for how long? Did your doctor talk to you about pro-biotics?

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@guthealth

I decided to join this discussion as it appears that I am now in what I call the SIBO limbo or no man’s land. From reading these posts it seems like my struggle has just begun. My symptoms began in mid July and it is believed that two consecutive rounds of antibiotics to treat two different conditions triggered it. I cracked a crown in late May and ended up with an extraction and implant. I took an antibiotic then but can’t remember what it was. Then I went for my annual physical in late June and was prescribed Clindimycin for a UTI. Symptoms of diarrhea, gas and bloating started about a week after I finished the Clindimycin. Long story short, my internist thought I had contracted CDiff from the Clindimycin and put me on Flagyl for ten days and performed a stool test which came back negative. The Flagyl helped for a week but then the symptoms restarted. My internist basically dismissed me at that point and told me to find a GI doctor, which took a few weeks and lots of phone calls. The GI doctor performed some routine blood work which was normal, and sent me for a CT scan of my belly, which fortunately also came back normal. He diagnosed me with SIBO and dysbiosis based on my symptoms (no breath test) and put me on another round of Flagyl. The cost of the Xifaxan would have been nearly $1500.00 for two weeks. So I took the Flagyl again since I tolerated it the first time. It helped for about two weeks and I then gradually slid back to the loose stools and lots of gas. He also put me on a low FODMAP diet, which helps a little but does not eliminate symptoms either. I have lost 15 pounds in three months due to diarrhea and being afraid to eat anything. I had a routine colonoscopy last year which was normal and I think that is why the gastro doctor is not in a rush to do another one (plus the normal CT scan). So here I am. I am not on medication right now, not eating much, afraid to eat anything. I am not even sure I have the correct diagnosis, but too many carbs make me gassier and when I am gassier I also tend to have looser stools. I go to work but rarely socialize with friends because it all revolves around food. Thankfully I am married and my husband has been very supportive. I cry a lot and have dark moments when I think I have cancer or will never be well again. I am afraid of what the gastro doctor will say when I see him next or that he will tell me there is nothing else he can do for me like my internist who basically abandoned me. How long have other group members been coping with this and what has helped? I am now researching a diet called the specific carbohydrate diet. Anyway, feeling desperate and looking for solutions like all of you. Thank you for “listening.” I hope I can also be of support to others here.

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I found a technology from Ireland that has been a life changer in drilling down into what my specific food offenders are http://www.FoodMarble.com 40 million Americans have some form of this,you did a beautiful job describing the disease and lack of solutions. Also a new company that provides meal(very tasty) for us people is modify health.com
Best of luck

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@lpolaka

I found a technology from Ireland that has been a life changer in drilling down into what my specific food offenders are http://www.FoodMarble.com 40 million Americans have some form of this,you did a beautiful job describing the disease and lack of solutions. Also a new company that provides meal(very tasty) for us people is modify health.com
Best of luck

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Anyone else tried this food marble thing, and how did it work for you ?

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@robinl

Hi
I just had my appointment with the gastro specialist. He explained to me that the nerves give off mixed messages to the abdomen. He told me to google monash university and search the low FODMAP diet. He said this is what he’s has recommended for patients with issues like ours.
Hope this works for you. Changing what you eat will certainly help.
Robin.

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I've been on lowFod 7 weeks and now 2 weeks and taking herbals reccomended by siebecker. Very little difference and I've been on xifaxan too 🙁 nothing is helping me. Water hurts.

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Check out foodmarble.com the devise allowed me to track how I digest food real time many times a day… everyones food transit time is different and modifyhealth.com when I get to lazy to cook healthy!

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Did you find anything that helped? Struggling a lot with this. Took amoxcicilin-clav, xifaxan and now on herbals berberine/oregano/Allicin. Waiting for Atrantil and GI advantage for repair. Its hard to tolerate water at this point. I suspected this last April and GI doctor couldn't test because of Covid. He just said IBS and gave me antidepressant and bentyl which actually slows motility and I think I have that. I lost 30lbs in 2 months from pain after I'd eat. I had a rib surgery that left me constipated for 10 days and all the pain meds made it worse. I was finally tested in January. Anywho!! I have very little relief and I dont know who to turn to.
Thank you!
Aimee

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