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Health anxiety and bowel issues

5 Oct 2020 16:54

Hi. First I hope I've posted this in the right place and don't mean to trivialise other people's situations with my terrible health anxiety. But a couple of weeks ago I had a bout of diarrhea after eating a meal which lasted for the evening but my bowel movements haven't gone back to normal since. I've had the urge to go to within half hour of getting up in the morning. Initially it was very loose easy passing stools and once it was out of the way for the day that was that. I didn't think much of it. Then about 5-7 days ago I started thinking - urgh - this is still happening. Something isn't right. I've got a lot of stress in my life at the moment. I wake up feeling that dread of going and sitting a life changing exam and so the loose stools seem to match this feeling - a typical nervous tummy. But my health anxiety has made me bypass all of this and instantly in my head it's bowel cancer. This isn't a totally irrational fear. My friend died of it last year at 42 and it was only discovered when her bowel perforated. I don't have any pain, any sign of blood or anything other than soft stools which are now not passing as easily as I'm not eating as much because I'm worried that eating might make it worse, am paranoid every time I visit the loo, and I've developed some piles so feel pressure in my bottom and like I'm trying to control the muscles which won't relax sufficiently to let a decent size stool out. They've been soft but formed but no bigger diameter than the size of my thumb. When I went earlier it was little slivers - I guess what you'd describe as ribbon or pencil thin. 
I had a phone consult earlier with my dr and mentioned my anxiety but she seemed to ignore that and has prescribed Meberevine. Now im

hoping this works because I think of I can nip the anxiety in the bud and this is still an issue then it probably needs more exploring. Having always had a strong stomach, though anxiety is pretty new to me, I don't know why I've jumped straight to a worst case scenario but I do know my friend's death hit me pretty hard and makes me over cautious to everything theee days. 

Health anxiety and bowel issues

7 Oct 2020 10:26 in response to Calamityjane

Hi CalamityJane and welcome to the forum.

I'm sorry about the symptoms you've been experiencing lately but it's good you got in touch with your doctor.

Hopefully what they've prescribed will help but if you'd like to seek some support and guidance with managing your health anxiety it may be worth getting in touch with Anxiety UK as they have a lot of great resources and advice.

I hope this helps and your symptoms start to improve soon.

All the best,

Steph, Cancer Chat Moderator