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Nurse Milli, RN
Nurse Milli, RN, Nurse (RN)
Category: Health
Satisfied Customers: 4139
Experience:  20 years experience in many areas of Nursing. Both Hospital and Private Practice experience.
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My Husband is 63 and was diagnosed with diverticulitus over

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My Husband is 63 and was diagnosed with diverticulitus over 20 years ago, but started having more trouble with colon problems including gas that he has extreme pain and difficulty passing. He also has trouble getting his bowels to move easily. He had a colonoscopy done in August of 2009 after the gastro doctor had him take a course of antibiotics because he felt he had diverticulitis (inflammation in the colon). He was diagnosed with diverticulitus thoughout his whole colon, but mostly concentrated heavily in the lower left quadrant. This is the area he experiences most of his pain. It usually comes on him within 2-4 hours after a meal, sometimes he will experience pain in his middle around his stomach area right after he eats. He takes several PX for other problems- high blood pressure (was taking Lotrel for years, but doctor recently switched him to Exforge because he was complaining of his stomach hurting after he would take the Lotrel, but he has had some problems emptying his bladder and more trouble getting his bowels to move since he has been taking the Exforge - about 3 weeks) and diabetes ( he was diagnosed with type 2 in 1993). The gastro doctor put him on Miralax after the colon test 2 years ago so he could keep his bowels softer and be able to pass them easier. It seems to help with that, but causes him to have more gas. He has internal hemorrhoids too! Can any of the blood pressure meds cause him problems emptying his bladder? He also takes Cardura 4-8MG once a day. He also takes Finasteride to help shrink the prostate. We are at our whits end about all this pain he experiences- he can't sleep well at night. He takes Gas X for the gas - it helps sometimes. But as soon as he sits up from a reclining position in the morning he is hit with PAIN and until he is able to pass the gas or have a bowel movement he continues with the PAIN. It even causes him difficulty emptying his bladder - he has to continue to try time after time, sometimes taking up to two hours or more to feel relieved in that area. Sometimes he is up and down throughout the entire night trying to empty. Can you give us any ideas as to what might be causing all his troubles and what we can do to remedy them? Any help will be greatly appreciated !!!
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Health
Expert:  Nurse Milli, RN replied 5 years ago.

Hi there and thank you for the question. I am a Registered Nurse and will be happy to help you today.

Let's address the question you asked about blood pressure meds causing him to not be able to pass urine. It would be more likely his prostate that is causing him his problems empyting his bladder. I feel sure his pain is from the Diverticulitis but he really needs a new colonscopy if he has not had one since August of 2009...a lot can change in 2 years. At his age, and his medical history and his current symptoms, he would be a good candidate for one. As far as the problems with emptying his he taking a stool softener? He would benefit from taking one if he doesn't already. His diet will also have a lot to do with the gas he has....Foods that commonly cause excess gas are apples, artichokes, asparagus, beans, broccoli, brussel sprouts, cabbage, cheese, corn, fruit drinks, Ice Cream, milk and milk products (which you avoid already), onions, pasta, peaches, pears, potatoes, prunes, and whole wheat foods. Something that is not proven but may be helpful is to take probiotic drinks such as Activia. As far as over the counter medications go, the Gas-X is the strongest thing you can get over the counter. Instead of gas pains he is feeling, he may be experiencing cramping...cramps may be associated with the Diverticulitis or other diseases of the colon like IBS.

Customer: replied 5 years ago.
The probiotic drinks like Activia that you suggested, are they milk based? And if Gas-X is the strongest thing over the counter, do you know of anything stronger that is a PX? If the Pains are cramps, is there any medicine that could help with them? And he has been taking stool softeners at night and the Miralax in the morning.
Expert:  Nurse Milli, RN replied 5 years ago.

Hi there and thanks for the reply back.

Yes, Activia is milk's yogart with live active cultures that help aid in digestion-like I said, some say it works wonders and it might be worth a try. Gas X is the strongest thing over the counter so if this doesn't work, there is no 'prescription strength' Gas X. Bentyl would be an good antispasmotic for cramps. If he does have the colonscopy and is found to have an inflammatory bowel disease, keeping it under control will ultimately help with the pain.

Customer: replied 5 years ago.

Is Bentyl a PX Med? If so, can you find out if it has any side effects and/or if it could be taken with his PX's I listed earlier? Is diverticulitus an inflammatory bowel disease or are you talking about something else? If so what are the symptoms of inflammatory bowel disease and how can it be kept under control to help with pain? Do you consult with a doctor when you answer my questions?

Expert:  Nurse Milli, RN replied 5 years ago.
Yes, Bentyl is a prescription. It should be able to be taken with most meds...his Dr will make sure it's okay and compatible before prescribing. Inflammatory bowel disease would be like Ulcerative Colitis or Chron's. IBS is an irritable bowel 'sydrome' - it will come and go. Inflammatory disease symptoms can vary from diarrhea, to constipation (or mixed), mucus in the stool- even blood in the stool. Also, cramping, and pain. (some of the same symptoms as Diverticulosis (like fever, and fatigue).
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