• d d
    December 10, 2008
    Can back pain cause abdominal cramps?
    d d
    December 10, 2008

    I have had chronic stomach pains for a while now. I was told that I have IBS, but I'm just not sure if that is right. Now I have a pinching-type pain in the right side of my stomach and burning pain in my lower back towards the sides. I have also noticed something that looks like mucus when I have a bowel movement, and I am very tired and feel weak. This is not like me at all. I am worrying about this all the time, and that is making it much worse.  What could it be?



  • Cort
    Health Guide
    December 10, 2008
    Health Guide
    December 10, 2008

    Have you tried the Check a Symptom box on the upper left hand of the page to see what it says about your symptoms? The gastrointestinal system is very complex and only a doctor can diagnose. IBS can cause a lot of symptoms, including lightheadness in some people. In fact, severe gastrointestinal symptoms are caused by illnesses that are very uncomfortable but are not considered dangerous. Then again, it could be due to something else.

    Did the doctor do anything other than a physical examination? Did she/he take any blood work,urine or stool tests, x-rays, ultrasound? These are some of the tests doctors may do when confronted with abdominal pain. If she/he did do them perhaps you can feel better that this really is IBS. On the other hand its very clear that anxiety causes increased pain, shortened breathing patterns (which can cause dizziness, etc.) If you're feeling particularly anxious you might want to do relaxation/breathing/meditation type exercises and see if your pain abates. Paste the url below into the address bar at top for more of the symptoms of IBS; mucus in the bowels, it turns out, is one of the more common symptoms, as is - in severe IBS - dizziness. Perhaps your physician needs to more aggressively treat your IBS. Good luck!

    Here are some links that you might be interested in as you're dealing with this: 

    Inflammatory Bowel Disease information

    Cooking to Control Chronic Pain

    Dealing with Anxiety and IBD/IBS


  • TK Hash December 11, 2008
    TK Hash
    December 11, 2008


    Hello, it sounds like you are having most of the symptoms of severe IBS.

    How much Tylenol do you take?  Please be careful about taking this.  I was diagnosed with IBS 15 years ago and have been on every medication that drs have access to and nothing works for me, so I eat lots of fruits and veggies and take a generic form of MiraLax to help with mine.

    Around  8 years ago, I was having similar problems like yours.  I was taking Tylenol to ease the pain and was put into the hospital with infection throughout my intestinal tract, infected gallbladder and liver and the Tylenol was the cause of it.  I took only the recommended dose on the bottle, but I still had taken too much of it, so please be careful.

    The mucous with your bowel movements is a sign of severe IBS, the pain in your sides is also a symptom, but the stress you are feeling is not doing your IBS any good, it is only making it worse.

    Have you had a colonoscopy yet?  You need to look into that also if you have not.  Also the burning pain is also typical of IBS.  I have that on a regular basis if my life is stressful.

    What type of dr are you seeing for you IBS?  I was referred to a Gastroenterologist and he perfomed the necessary tests on me that needed to be done and that is when they diagnosed me.  Now I have to have a colonoscopy every 2 years. 

    There is a possibility for many things that can cause the symptoms that you are having, like colon polyps (which most of the time there is blood in the stool with this, but can cause the pain that you are describing) which I had.

    Please go and see a specialist.  At least then you would know for sure what is going on.

    I hope you are feeling better soon.

  • dr. greg December 10, 2008
    dr. greg
    December 10, 2008

    Also, don't forget that anxiety and/or depression underlie many gastroinestinal disorders, often including IBS.  You may want to check with a profesisonal in that field to make sure any of these issues are not a factor.

  • tabisch December 11, 2008
    December 11, 2008

    I also had major abdominal surgery after the birth of my son. I had a hysterectomy and was left with some major adhesions to my abdominal wall. Those were the ones they found and separated at least. They've returned though. I also had the good luck to develop polycystic ovarian syndrome. That will cause severe abdominal pain which radiates into your lower back. If your gyn does an ultrasound he/she will be able to see cysts without being invasive. Good luck, you'll probably need it to get an accurate diagnosis.

  • Pauline December 11, 2008
    December 11, 2008

    Have you been checked for food allergies... I found out I have celeack aka glutten intollerence... and it can be a nightmare depending on what you eat... my daughter also has dairy allergies... and has serous stomach issues with that too...

  • sunflwrfae December 13, 2008
    December 13, 2008

    There are several things that can cause those syptoms.  I know of a few at least.  A kidney infection, heriated discs, and Fibromyalgia.  I'm no doctor so don't quote me but, those are the symptoms that I have experienced in my life.  It can't hurt to ask a doctor about those illnesses.

  • michele December 12, 2008
    December 12, 2008

    You definitely need a colonoscopy. I have always had ibs, it would switch back and forth between constipation and diarrhea. About 5 years ago, my bm's started getting looser and looser, till i was always in the bathroom at any unexpected time. They couldn't find anything in my bloods or on the gi series or the barium enema. Then my colonoscopy looked clear to the doc, and he was telling me it was just severe ibs, but when the report came back on the biopsies, it showed I had a rare form of Inflamatory bowel disease(IBD) called collagenous colitis where bands of collagen grow in the interior walls of the intestine and are undetectable except by biopsy.

  • BRKyle December 11, 2008
    December 11, 2008

    YES.  Go see your doctor.  If it's been this long, there are all sorts of things, and even if you just get an IBS diagnosis, follow up ruthlessly and ask to see a specialist if your plan allows it.  You have to keep track of such things, and no one else but you will do so.

  • vlh ,alabama December 12, 2008
    vlh ,alabama
    December 12, 2008

    It could possibly be Crohns Disease, you need to get further tests like a Colonoscopy. Please check with your Doctor.

  • Dana December 11, 2008
    December 11, 2008

    Have you been tested for kidney, or gall bladder stones? They can come and go and offer up some nasty pain which can come and go with movement. Also infection kidney or bladder can stir things up as well. Get some tests done and at least rule out the bad stuff. The change in your pupils is strange do you have yellowing in the whites of your eyes? That is liver problems. Don't be bullied, pain can and does radiate so nothing is classic symptoms especially if you have been enduring  pain long enough.

  • Al
    December 11, 2008
    December 11, 2008

    Yes.  I had those symptoms with Whipple's Disease.  There is also a rare one called Weber-Christian Disease which contributed inflammation when it piggy backed on a Whipple 'attack' for want of a better explanatory description..

  • JH from Oregon December 11, 2008
    JH from Oregon
    December 11, 2008

    Yes, please get a colonoscopy! You may have Crohn's Disease. That explains some of the symptoms I had before I was diagnosed (i had a wide range of symptoms) If you are not running a fever, I would not be too worried yet. I also have IBS and Crohns and know how bad that side and back pain can get. A lot of Doctors will not "put you under the scope", especially if you have an HMO. Demand it! There are medicines to help but not cure, sometimes just knowing what you have makes things a bit better.

    In my experience, primary care doctors as well as some GI's, somehow do not think IBS can be so painful and disabling, even with the medicines that are out, it is awful to deal with.

    I cannot believe the post that the person with IBS eats lots of fruits and veggies!! THAT WOULD MAKE THE PAIN INCREASE AND INTENSE! NOT TO MENTION ADDED BOWEL MOVEMENTS! OH MY GOODNESS SAKE! you want to baby your poor stomach. Try dry toast, plain foods, such as bread, just plain bread! - carbohydrates and no acidic foods what so ever! See if your IBS gets better with an anti-anxiety and a VERY bland diet. If so, you can learn to ease in foods that will not hurt you.

    OVERALL.... if pain is your worst symptom, and not running to the bathroom 20 plus times a day, then I would definately, check your temperature when you have the pain and then report to your nearest primary care to be referred to a GI, if you can go directly to a Gastroenterologist, do that. My very first GI I ever had said to me, "you should never have to live/deal with pain, it is not normal nor natural".......

    Good Luck

    JH from Oregon

  • Beentheregirl December 13, 2008
    December 13, 2008

    Smile   Hello,


    I have IBS and I know all the stuff with it.  But in your case this sounds to me

    that you may have a problem witha severe bladder infection, or kidney infection.  Because the symptoms you tell us are consistant with this.


    But also, there are other things to consider -

    1.  Spastic Colon

    2.  Ulcerative colitis

    3.  Chrohns Disease

    4.  Imflamatory Bowel Disease


    Now all these are related to IBS,  but the symptoms are more severe.

    There is also the possibility of a bowel obstruction - that's where a little

    piece of tissue wraps around the colon and causes it to back up because it

    cannot get to the colon and through the digestive section.  I had this once,

    it required surgery to remove the piece of tissue around the colon.  It was

    very small,  but big enough to case a problem.  Surgery for sure..


    Having IBS is no picnic, but we have to look at all the outlets before we go

    off into another world.    I suggest going to the mayo clinic newsletter and

    checking out symptoms.  If you are in this much pain, it concerns me.


    The kidney is the one thing you have to watch.   Are you being monitored by

    a physician?   you will probably have to have a  catscan to see if you do have

    a blockage.  If I were you, I would not wait another day!   You have no choice.

    Are you in a stressful situation?  Because IBS thrives on this.   diet is so

    important.  I have to eat Raisin Brain cerial every day the rest of my life.

    Just to keep those colons working!   You could get constipated as well.

    You may need Dol-co-lace  to soften it up and move it along in the colon.

    Works for me.   There are also "trigger" foods that can cause this.  I have

    several - but of all things chocolate is the biggest one!  Sealed   I had to find

    another comfort food to suit me.


    I sure hope this all helps you!

  • ladybugg December 12, 2008
    December 12, 2008


    A few years ago I went to the ER from having horrible low back pain and severe cramps. I did not feel well at all, and like when I would bend over I "almost" could not get back up, the pain was so bad. It was totally unbearable. The ER doctor did x-rays and told me my bowels were completely full. How embarassing for sure...ugh... I would suggest a colonoscopy for sure and x-rays or anythnig else they can do for you, like a few have said before me, DEMAND it after all, the doctors are suppoe to work for us, right?.

    Sometimes mucus was there too, when I did go a little, but I also take alot of meds and my doctor gives me Lactulose, AWESOME stuff for constipation... It's a prescription, and I haven't cramped on it, which is a miracle.... Good luck to you,

    and May GOD Bless You and Yours!

    Let us all know what happens....


  • dnichols December 11, 2008
    December 11, 2008

    I was diagnosed with IBS many years ago, along with a spastic colon.  A few years ago something similar happened to me, but I also began losing weight and not being able to eat with mine.  The problem was my gallbladder. The reason I started losing weight and not being able to eat the doctor told me was that my gallbladder had died and began metasticizing to my liver.  I surely know how you feel, and pray that nothing that drastic is wrong with you.

  • Janet Holmes December 11, 2008
    Janet Holmes
    December 11, 2008

    Have you ever had abdominal surgery or an accident that could have resulted in abdominal scarring? This sounds very much like my situation from 1995 to 2004. No one knew what was wrong with me, and the pain kept getting worse and worse and all they said was "IBS" and "Stress." After 42 doctors, 5 days at the Mayo Clinic, constant pain medication from 2003 (which gave me my life back fror about a year), two colonoscopies (I wouldn't do that again, there was nothing wrong with the inside, so it showed nothing and was incredibly painful as they forced the tube between the areas that were tied together by scar tissue), a stalled life, isolation, etc., I finally found a gynecologist who listened to me. He had seen ARD before (Adhesion Related Disorder), so he asked me the question I asked you. He also said he'd seen this so many times with women.... I had surgery and am finally pain free since 2005.


    Of course you're stressed and depressed, who wouldn't be? You go from being productive and active to slowly sliding into a bed in continual pain and fear. BUT, the anxiety is FROM your condition, it is not the CAUSE!


    Be well, Janet



  • DeeJay December 11, 2008
    December 11, 2008

    Please seek medical advice if you have not.  Once diagnosed and treated you can compare treatments with others but please seek professional care.

  • stephaniesue December 11, 2008
    December 11, 2008

    Hi there,


    Check you meds!  I was put on Ultram ER for FMS and widespread osteoarthritis.  I ended up with terrible nausea and vomiting.  Discontinued it and I straightened up.  FMS'ers are overly sensitive to side effects.  My neuro increased Requip from 3 to 4 mgs.  Just that small increment caused nausea, vomiting, terrible diarrhea, hair loss, profuse sweating, weight loss and appetite loss.  Went back to 3 mg and all is well.  (I just wonder if the hair loss is permanent!  Anyone have an answer to that?)  Good luck and I hope you can find answers.  Take care.....Sue

  • Cici December 11, 2008
    December 11, 2008

    You need to be diagnosed by a medical Dr.; people on this website, altho well meaning, are not professionals.  A full abdominal workup including CAT scan may be needed.  Good Luck

  • Joni December 20, 2008
    December 20, 2008

    Unfortunetly, these symptoms were the SAME as mine which makes me want to say... go get an MRI, blood work & colonoscopy.  I was diagnoised with 2 things that are common symptoms as you state... (1) TOO much anti-bacterial medication was given over a period of time for IBS that killed the GOOD Bacteria Cells which are found in Yogert, Cottage Cheese, etc.  The med that I had to take to counter act this issue was very expensive so it's best to treat NOW then later...  (2) MRI & a trip to the Urologist showed Kidney Cancer which in turn led to having one kidney removed.  BOTH of these cause stomach & back 'side' pain.   And STRESSING about it does NOT help!  Put one foot in front of the other & just do it ... make appt. w/Dr.  If he/she doesn't help make another appt w/different Dr.   P.s. If you do get a Colonoscopy, preparing for it is the worst... I had to drink a gallon of this 'nasty' liquid... Hint: do it IN the bathroom - comes both ends QUICKLY!

  • basketpam December 16, 2008
    December 16, 2008

    You might want to have yourself check for Celiac disease.  This is a food allergy to wheat or gluten.  I had every kind of pain possible in the lower region of my body and I think a great deal of it was due go the celiac disease.  It's just a blood test, nothing extreme so what can it hurt.

  • missy December 11, 2008
    December 11, 2008

    Since medicine could not be the cause, iI would make a journal for the next week of EVERY symptom and  make another appt with the Dr. I have found in the past if they

    1 See it all out in front of them

    2 See it is affecting your daily life and

    3 that you are serious

    They are much more likely to give you a second look. Also nicely demand some blood work and a ct or ultrasound

    Hope this helps


  • QuestionAnswerer March 18, 2009
    March 18, 2009

    thankyou for posting this question.. i have the exact same as you. i blackout and i have had the uppper camera down and a million blood tests aswell as back&forth trips to the hospital, i apparently have ibs or something wrong with my nerves where it sends the wrong signals to my brain but i dont think that its right either. when you find out whats wrong please somehow let me know. thankyou sooo much for posting this.

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