In my early twenties I was plagued with pain in my left side, which grew and eventually caused a large tumour like swelling to occur in my left side. So bad that it was visible through my clothes.

After several fruitless visits to my new GP I was referred to the hospital, first to the bowel screening clinic and then to the gynaecological department.

I had many visits and finally had a camera put up into my bowels (Enteroscopy)to check for any problems, when this came back clear I was then referred to the gynaecological department. I was examined by several doctors there and underwent checks for everything they could think of. Even going as far as to have another camera put inside my body, this time through my belly-button, looking for damage to my ovaries etc., as well as checking for >Endometriosis

When these all came back clear I was discharged from the hospital with no diagnosis but still major swelling on my side as well as several other nasty symptoms. My GP referred me to a new GP at the practice who was also a Orthopaedic surgeon. One 30 minute examination/appointment later he gave me a diagnosis. There wasn't one thing wrong with me but three, he treated me for each and his diagnosis proved 100% correct.

My spinal deformities had become inflamed and I had a pulled muscle in my lower left groin area. Kind of like a hernia. Both of these were tackled with physiotherapy. As for the swelling and all those other nasty symptoms I've had to live with for over a year by then. I had a condition called Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS).

Originally I thought, given the information I then gathered about IBS, that the symptoms haunting me without rhyme or reason since my teens were IBS. As many of the symptoms were familiar to the recurring symptoms I had long since had to live with, coming and going without warning quite frequently sometimes since my early teens when my spinal problems were discovered. But this wasn't the cause, but I will come to the cause on another page later.

So I basically attempt to control, or rather reduce the effects, IBS with diet. Avoiding foods and drinks which basically cause it to flare up badly giving me constant swelling, grumbling sounds from my bowel, constipation and diarrhoea, and bloating to name but a few lovely symptoms.

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