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Thread: Do stool tests rule out IBD?

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    Do stool tests rule out IBD?

    I took some antibiotics(flucloaxillin) on May 5th, only 3 doses and have had a nightmare of a time with stress and what was clearly a complete destruction of good gut bacteria. The doctor handed them to me without ANY advice or warning and frustratingly I ended up getting my infection cleared with a very friendly external antibiotic gel. Im glad the infection cleared up as it was on my thumb but Ive suffered worse than I ever have and lost 11 pounds within 2 months. Im now in a weird place after a good weeks of bad bms* where Im back to my usual constipation but im still suffering loose stools. I have been to the doc TEN (yep ten) times explaining my concern and finally got myself some blood tests, h.pylori tests and a stool test which all came back clear today - I was worried this was an-antibiotic caused infection but if it was, would it show in the stool test?

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    Forum Supporter ~Seraphim ~'s Avatar
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    Yup , it would . Possibly you have IBS.

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    Platinum Member j.man's Avatar
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    IBD encompasses a wide array of disorders. Your GI is either inflamed or it's not. Whether your stool sample comes up positive or negative for certain bacteria doesn't change that. If you've seen your doctor 10 times, then statistically speaking you should have accidentally asked the right questions by now. If you don't feel he's taking you or your condition seriously, I'd try to shop around. Prolonged changes in bowel behavior aren't to be taken lightly.

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    Have you had a colonoscopy?

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    Ordering stool tests (very broad term btw - more information about the specific tests would help) from a laboratory detect microorganisms in your stool that may or may not be pathogenic. Some tests are specific, such as H. Pylori, while others are more broad, for possible isolation and identification of other organisms. Hence the doctor can rule out infection or not. However, this does not account for any underlying autoimmune reactions or disorders, which may be acute or chronic. Depending on how long you've had this going on determines which kind it is. Chronic is usually at the 1 year or more mark. So this puts you into the acute category.

    For the blood tests (also very vague term), I can't say much to such little information. My guess is they ordeded at least a CBC (complete blood count) or other metabolic tests. Doctors don't order "everything", in regards to laboratory tests. They are specific orders, so not knowing what they are makes it hard to say what exactly came back clear. Hence, it's hard to say if they properly ruled out infection or an immune response.

    I assume this is an acute reaction from the antibiotics you took, which wiped out good gut/colon bacteria. Take probiotics and eat yogurt, preferably with live cultures. If this doesn't improve your situation after some time, there is a procedure to implant a stool "seed" culture into your colon to help introduce normal flora back into your system. Consult a gastroenterologist if you haven't already. They could measure your body's inflammatory response via other tests or means.
    Last edited by yatsue; 07-10-2019 at 06:09 PM.

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    No colonoscopy - I went through a milder version of this last year after a near car crash and it eased when I changed my diet and have pushed the docs to do a further explore HOWEVER, I was more or less fine until the day I took the meds hence why I know its something which started as SOON as I started. Tomorrow Im having a discussion with the doc who gave me the go ahead for those previous tests, he told me its most likely IBS if ive faced it before (I have TERRIBLE health anxiety and have to confess this entire thing has had me INSANE due to worry) . Just glad I have no infection as I was scared of taking another antibiotic which would mess with me - I asked for a colonoscopy in late May as I was literally eating and having everything go through me for days but one of the doctors said 3 doses of medication wouldnt cause something like C.diff and I guess he was right as it wouldve shown (I think)

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    If they were looking for it then they would have found it.

    I have IBS and it can be truly miserable . Stress and anxiety definitely add to the misery . Hopefully they find out what the issue is.

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    Originally Posted by ~Seraphim ~
    If they were looking for it then they would have found it.

    I have IBS and it can be truly miserable . Stress and anxiety definitely add to the misery . Hopefully they find out what the issue is.
    You cannot "look" for something if you don't know what it is. Sure, you can have an idea of a cause, but this is why doctors order laboratory tests, in order to rule out or confirm specific organisms. Based on symptoms, doctors order specific tests. For all they know it could be C. Diff, just for example, but if they didn't order the specific test detecting it then the results would come back "clear" for the other tests they did order. It is a crap shoot (pun intended) since symptoms can have overlapping similarities to other causes of illness. If your doctor misses ordering a test it might be, if they think it is unlikely or just didn't think of it, then it really is the patient's loss. I see doctors add on tests in the lab I work in all of the time because they think it might be something else, or ordered the same test again if they believe it wasn't detectable in the sample they sent yet. It could be IBS, but it could also still be an infection if it was missed. We can't be sure because we do not have all of the information here. I just hope you end up with a good doctor OP.
    Last edited by yatsue; 07-10-2019 at 06:45 PM.

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    Platinum Member ThatwasThen's Avatar
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    Have you tried taking a probiotic supplement or even lactose free Activa Yogurt? I also have IBS and I've been so much better since adding the yogurt to my diet.

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    Cheers for the insight guys - Im finding it hard to even explain to the docs these days my issues as I have slowly began to introduce foods into my diet again and have noticed things have calmed down .. buttt when I say calmed down Im constipated which for me feels very normal...basically not going for a day then the next going in "pieces" - its made me realise I probably have got some chronic condition as constipation on a regular basis is NOT normal. However, my diet before May 5th consisted of tomato curries with chilli, cumin, basil, garlic and couscous , pasta sauces and even jalapeno based meals and I was 100% fine. I had one d* attack in March after a Subway but thats the last time I had d* as opposed to c*. The doctor Im speaking to tomorrow was fantastic with me one week ago, he sat me down but did mention this stool test contained a broad spectrum of things and I swear he said IBD (hence my post...) ...Im finding that when I eat bread, pasta, rice and dry cookies Im normal but I dont wanna eat this cos its given me baad heartburn so for the past few days Ive included broccoli and sweetcorn and apart from the constipation I have zero spasms/twinges which put me on edge.

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