Gastrointestinal: IBS, SIBO & Urinary
Digestive disturbances are often a large part of ME/CFS. Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) refers to regular constipation, gastroparesis, or diarrhea, and can come with nausea or cramps. Small Intestine Bacterial Overgrowth (SIBO) refers to an excess of bacteria, fungi, or archaea in the small intestine, which normally does not contain such pathogens. Some patients demonstrate low-grade gastroenteritis in an endoscopic exam. Food Intolerance is a general term that refers to any bad reaction from eating food. Some patients seem to have a deficiency of digestive enzymes or stomach acid, leading to malabsorption. Severe ME patients often have problems swallowing food and intestinal paralysis, leading to dehydration or malnutrition. This is also the place to discuss urinary symptoms such as abnormal urinary frequency or bladder dysfunction.