Q. What causes gas with bloating in a paraplegic patient?

Answered by
Dr. Asma Sajid
and medically reviewed by Dr. Divya Banu M
This is a premium question & answer published on Jan 27, 2020

Hello doctor,

My husband is a complete SCI paraplegic, he is 28. He has been having severe stomach pains come and go for months and is not receiving any answers we were at the ER 3 times in a week, no results of infection, or constipation or anything seen in X-rays and cat scans, he gets very bloated and wakes up almost every morning with gas pains and has to make himself sick if he cannot burp them out, no fever but sometimes he will get the chills and sweats still without fever or temperature drop, he needs answers, it is very unbearable to him.

Dr. Asma Sajid

Family Physician General Practitioner


Welcome to icliniq.com.

I have read your query but as you have not mentioned how long ago the injury was sustained, I will presume it was not recent but the gas build is recent. If both are recent, you might want to look into the Bowel Program for SCI.

First, make sure his diet is not very high in sugars, vegetables like broccoli, cabbage, radishes etc to decrease methane production in the gut (the gas). Second, introducing suppositories or carminatives will help with passing wind. Tablet Motillium 10 mg thrice a day before meals promotes gut motility too. If it does not work, there are other drugs like Erythromycin (an antibiotic) available to promote gut motility, that should help with releasing gas. Have a look at his gall bladder too: sludge or sand and not just gallstones causes bloating/indigestion.

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