Q. Are there any tests to confirm IBS?

Answered by
Dr. Anshul Varshney
and medically reviewed by iCliniq medical review team.
This is a premium question & answer published on Feb 07, 2017 and last reviewed on: Apr 21, 2021

Hi doctor,

I have extreme upper abdominal pain or pressure feeling after eating. It causes nausea and vomiting within minutes after eating or drinking anything, including water sometimes. I have had several CAT scans, barium x-ray, two endoscopies, an EKG, a CAT scan of my brain and tons of blood work including endoscopy biopsy. Everything is apparently fine besides random high blood pressure and it is controlled with blood pressure medicines and an instance of higher, but not extremely high liver enzymes. They also found a small sliding hiatal hernia, which they say is not inflamed and would not cause this.This started after excess vomiting during my pregnancy. I ended up being diagnosed with pre-eclampsia that turned into HELLP syndrome. I had really high blood pressure, protein in urine and high liver enzymes. I delivered my baby through emergency C-section before two months. Before leaving the hospital, I ate a meal again and ended up with vomiting. They said that it was due to gas bubble. After going home, my symptoms got worse each day causing me to go to the ER. I eventually ended up getting my gallbladder removed three weeks ago and was great for three days on Oxycodine. I have since been hospitalized four times where each time they did testing, gave morphine for pain and never find anything in the ER. They discharge me without solving the issue. I am currently admitted by my gallbladder surgeon and going home tomorrow after four days because they say there are no other tests at the time. I am scared and really want some help. Morphine or any pain medicine for that matter is the only thing that helps once it kicks in.

If I go home, I will be back in the ER within three days with dehydration because without IV my symptoms get worse each day to the point of extreme dehydration. I must also state that since the four days in the hospital I have extremely improved, but this has happened before. The only reason I think I am improving here is because the pain medicines allow me to eat small portions (liquid diet). Without the pain medicines, the pain will never go away. I also threw up blood that looked like coffee grounds about three times or so, but they said it is normal because of the amount of vomiting I am having. If I am not in the hospital, the pain and nausea become so bad and I vomit every 15 minutes and end up going to the ER from the pain and fear of dehydration. I have a history of GERD and was on Nexium for a whole year and still on it. I am currently prescribed Klonopin for anxiety from all the stress, BP medicine as needed and Oxycodine as needed for when I do try to eat or drink while in the hospital. I was recently removed from Morphine, which I was on for 3 days.

Sometimes eating anything will immediately return my symptoms while other times, I can eat a few bites and feel fine. The pain is in my upper middle abdomen and middle chest. It radiates directly to my back, between my shoulder blades and behind my stomach. Do you have any other suggestions or tests or any possible things to check for as well? Please help with my upper abdominal pain and vomiting.



Welcome to icliniq.com.

We are here to help you.

  • After going through your query, it seems to me that you are suffering from irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) associated with acid reflux disease.
  • Pain in the abdomen with normal investigations is a consistent feature of IBS, as is true in your case. So, I feel you have IBS.
  • It is anxiety related issue, and that is why your doctor has given you Klonopin (Clonazepam). However, Klonopin alone is not going to help you.
  • I advise the following treatment of IBS. Consult your specialist doctor, discuss with him or her and take treatment with consent.
  1. A proton pump inhibitor like Pantoprazole and Rabeprazole, which will help in neutralizing any acid if you have in the stomach and smooth muscle relaxant like Mebeverine for stomach pain.
  2. You should avoid fat and pepper in diet and prefer to take a soft and bland diet.
  3. In refractory cases drugs like Chlordiazepoxide and Clidinium bromide can be used, if the condition is not responding.

For further information consult a medical gastroenterologist online -->https://www.icliniq.com/ask-a-doctor-online/medical-gastroenterologist

Hi doctor,

Are there any tests to confirm IBS? Would they have not seen this with the tests I had?



Welcome back to icliniq.com.

  • IBS is a diagnosis of exclusion, and when all your reports are normal, and still you have the symptoms of pain in the abdomen and acid reflux, then it fits with the diagnosis.
  • Do you have any weight loss or loose stools or associated constipation? Are you taking any medicine for any disease?

Revert with details to a medical gastroenterologist online -->https://www.icliniq.com/ask-a-doctor-online/medical-gastroenterologist

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