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ms or ibs?

I am RRMS, diagnosed 12 years, current medication Tysabri only. For the last week or so I have had real problems with over active bowels. I wake and have to jump out of bed and run straight away, I can then go up to 10 times in the next 2 hours and after that its fine. First time is very soft but formed, afterwards it tends to be small and passes with lots of wind. After the morning rush i am fine until the next day. I keep thinking its going to be a one of but it just keeps going on. I have had similar symptoms before but after about 18 months normal service were resumed. Unfortunately in that time I started to lose weight at an alarming rate as I became scared to eat anything. I normally have porridge with dried fruit in for breakfast.

I think the best thing to do about a change in how your gut is behaving is to see the GP. They deal with people’s disordered insides every day of the week. The GP is likely to have a view on whether your troubles are a bit of an infection, IBS or whatever, and should have some advice on what you can do or take or eat or not eat to calm things down for you. Given that this is very troublesome for you and has already had quite an effect on your weight and eating habits, I do think a trip to the doc is due. Or you could talk to a pharmacist first to see if they have any good ideas. (If was in your shoes and wanted to help myself, btw, the first thing I would do would be to put toast and marmalade on the breakfast menu and ditch all that high fibre stuff!) I hope you get the expert advice you need. It is so important to stay properly nourished with this condition. Alison

I swapped from bread to porridge the last time this happened which was a good few years ago. I even gave up sandwiches and replaced the bread with oat cakes and this did help but I just can’t face doing that now. I don’t want to be making hundreds of different meals for every one, for a start I would never remember who’s was who’s. My 2 year old looked a little distressed when I gave her little plastic flowery plate to her big sister who was 9, and served her up an adult portion (knowing my 2 year old though she would have given it a good go). I started eliminating all sorts of things (even gave up chocolate) to no effect. A good number of years ago I ended up hospitalised with MS hug and ended up having a barium meal, and was told them I had an uncooridnated bowel (I wasn’t diagnosed then) but this seems a bit like a reoccurance of the bowel issue without the hug to confuse things. Seeing my neuro next month so will bring it up.

I love dried fruit, but have pretty much stopped eating any at all.

I get the symptoms you describe after eating dried Apricots, which I love the most. Other dried fruit are much less of a problem for me so I allow myself a small amount ocassionally.

My suggestion to you is to leave the dried fruit out of your morning porridge and see if that helps. If it doesn’t, which should take a day or two, go and talk to your GP.

Good Luck!