ZocdocAnswersAm I lactose intolerance?

Question

Am I lactose intolerance?

I got diagnosed wth IBS because of my anxiety but I am not convinced. I have had a blood test, ultrasound, upper endoscopy, and a stool sample done and my doctor diagnosed me with IBS. My small intestines were severely inflamed. Since he could not figure out why my intestines were inflamed he diagnosed me with IBS from my anxiety. I am not convinced. I feel like these doctors have tested me for everything...except food allergies or lactose intolerance.

Answer

I am sorry to hear that you are continuing to have so many symptoms! It sounds like you have had a pretty good initial workup done, although there is still in my mind more thinking and investigation that should occur. In particular, I am curious by the statement that your "intestines were inflamed". This is definitely something that can be found on endoscopy, but it should not lead to a diagnosis of irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), which is defined as abdominal pain and cramping in the absence of any evidence of inflammation. There, I think it is important to clarify this point regarding the findings on upper endoscopy. If it turns out that there was indeed evidence of inflammation, then several other conditions would be compatible with that, including inflammatory bowel disease (aka Crohn's disease, not be be confused with IBS) and celiac disease (reaction to gluten). I think it is time to involve a gastroenterologist, especially if you have not had any clear answers after so much initial testing. Your primary care doctor should be able to make the referral for you. I hope that you get some answers to this issue very soon and that you can start feeling better.

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