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Pots And Bloating Help Help


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Hi Everyone,

My worst symptom these days is the bloating and ab pressure. It gets worse as the day goes on. Eating adds to it, but I can have even on a pretty empty stomach. My dx is pots and I am treated by a cardio but am wondering if I need to see a gastro dr. Do most of you with pots also have bloating? Thanks for you input! I am sending out healing wishes to all!!

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A lot us here seem to have bloating. I didn't know that beef caused a problem. I don't eat much beef, but have a lot of bloating and gas. I have been playing around w/ my diet because diet can make a big difference - it helps to eat easier to digest foods (toast, rice, potatoes) and avoid things that cause gas (beans, brocooli, etc.). There is good info online, but it might be really helpful to see a gastro.

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I don't have the bloating problem.

When I DID have the problem it was a gall bladder issue. Post gall bladder surgery I have no more bloating.

I also have the Irritable Bowel diagnosis, but like Amy, diarrhea is my symptom of that.

Good luck with things. Ithink I'd recommend checking this out with your promary care doc or a GI doc.

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A lot us here seem to have bloating. I didn't know that beef caused a problem. I don't eat much beef, but have a lot of bloating and gas. I have been playing around w/ my diet because diet can make a big difference - it helps to eat easier to digest foods (toast, rice, potatoes) and avoid things that cause gas (beans, brocooli, etc.). There is good info online, but it might be really helpful to see a gastro.

Since POTS, I found that my body does not like beef at all. A simple hamburger or small steak leads to hours of pain and bloating. I can tolerate chicken (a little) but pork is just as bad as beef... so I rarely eat any meat. My diet consists of soup, rice, toast, eggs (not often), tea (herbal with no caffeine), macaroni/spaghetti (I'm Italian, so I cannot give it up no matter how I feel afterwards <smile>), lentils and gatorade.

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I would think it could be My-Body-Doesn't-Regulate-Itself-Right related.

My brother suffered for years with slow gastric emptying, which is autonomic-related. So I'm sure bloating can be, too.

Considering the number of things our autonomic system has a hand in, it might be hard to list many symptoms that for certain AREN'T related to dysautonomia. Maybe athlete's foot.


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Autonomic dysfunction can affect the digestive system, and if the ANS dysfunction is milder, then I assume other related ANS symptoms will be also, including digestive issues. However, some people can have other symptoms of dysautonomia that are more severe, and still have milder digestive issues. Just as the CNS--(central nervous system) has many different functions, and someone with a disease that affects the CNS can have diffferent areas of the body that are affected more then others.

When I was younger I had digestive problems, and I still do. They waxed and waned just as they do now, only they are more prevalent now--------AND MORE DISTRESSING. BLOAT is one of the main features--- :P:)B):lol:

I don't know if there is a day in my life when I don't have BLOATING. My bowels are slow also. The CNS can affect digestion also, as my spine instability, and lower brain stem compression has added to this. My EDS has caused me to have a lot of diverticuli in lower bowel, as I just recently found out. I have also had one or two large diverticuli in duodeum-(small bowel)---3rd, and 4th sections-----------(both areas have some thickening that the Docs are keeping an eye on). It appears I have some inflammation. I can feel it, as I get full easier when I eat. I already got full easily, but now it's even worse.

I think when the barium CT was done---the barium got stuck in the diverticuli in the small intestine-----

I've been kind of miserable, and feel like I just ate a full meal most of the day until I wake up in the morning.

I just had a barium lower GI last week, and still suffering from that. The prep is the same as it is for colonoscopy, but the Doc that ordered it wanted to avoid sedation that comes with colonoscopy due to very low BPs, and unknown territory of the EDS bowel----(we just have no idea how the EDS has affected my bowel)----we just have clues it might due to the unusual amount of diverticuli in large bowel, and the large diverticuli in small bowel.

The good news is that the rediologist did not report lesions or tumors in large bowel. We have as family history of colon cancer. My brother has it now, and it has recently spread to liver, and just outside the liver---(this was just confirmed a couple weeks ago). My mother died earlier this year, but we don't know where her cancer started, as we were told it was in her entire abdomin--(terminal), just three days before she died. LONG STORY THERE---won't go into that. Her brother died of advanced colon cancer two weeks after she died.

My doc--(she's the surgeon who did my brother's bowel resection) would like to follow up on small bowel with more testing---even though possible neoplasm was mentioned, the radiologist said less likely, and more likely diverticulitis. She did not think Cancer was there either------(she said the radiologists have to mention the differentials----(things it could be) to cover their behinds).

MY mid right gut bothers me, kind of like someone has thier hand wedged in there. Plus I have a recent desiccated disk on T-8, and the doc said this can aggravate my bowel problems.

I'd say my guts are comfortable maybe 20% of the time-------- :huh:

Maxine :0)

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lina et al -

as others have said, it certainly may be dysautonomia-related for you. many people without any type of dysautonomia have various degrees of bloating though as well. many people do find that dietary changes are helpful though what is helpful can vary a lot from person to person and thus can take a lot of trial & error. if severe/ bothersome enough there may be some meds that could help too but certainly no magic fixes or easy answers in that regard. if the bloating is bothering you though (which it sounds like it is) it's certainly worth discussing with your doc. perhaps you could see if your PCP has any thoughts/ ideas and if that doesn't help pursue seeing a GI. it often takes some time to get in with a GI specialist if the situation isn't emergent so you could pursue an appt now, talk with your PCP and/or try dietary changes in the meantime and have an appt "on the books" if you don't find any relief.

in terms of the specific relationship between bloating & dysautonomia there are two mechanisms that could be going on:

1. for some people GI issues can act up in relation to other autonomic issues acting up (i.e. orthostatic stress, tachycardia, etc) and will improve upon better management. i've heard (& experienced) this to be the case more so with nausea than with bloating but it's not out of the question. one non-technical explanation of this is that the orthostatic stresses take up a lot of your body's energy leaving less for concurrent digestion....sort of the reverse of why some people have a lot of tachy and/or low BP if they eat a big meal, lots of carbs, etc.

2. for others there is actual neuropathy in some or all of the GI tract to varying degrees. this is a type of autonomic neuropathy and leads to motility disorders including gastroparesis, intestinal dysmotility/ pseudo-obstruction, colonic inertia, etc (though these diagnoses can also be caused by muscle disorders so aren't always neuropathic in origin). these disorders can be mild or severe and of course the whole spectrum in between. bloating can certainly be a part of them. as i'm sure you know autonomic neuropathy can be the root cause of POTS as well as other autonomic disorders so in this case POTS may not be the cause of your bloating but rather both POTS & bloating are both caused by the same underlying problem, autonomic neuropathy.

the two categories i used aren't particularly always clear cut, there can be overlap & interplay, etc. but hopefully some of the ideas within can help you understand some of what MAY be going on.

i get severe bloating at times & in different locations, i.e. upper abdomen vs. lower. for me it's a part of severe dysmotility throughout my GI tract (worst in my stomach & varying degrees elsewhere) caused by autonomic neuropathy. i don't have POTS but rather autonomic failure/ systemic autonomic neuropathy; essentially i have neuropathy in every part of the autonomic system.

i know that bloating can certainly be bothersome, annoying, & uncomfortable but aside from that it's not something i would worry about unless it's incredibly severe with an acute onset. for instance if you've never had a problem with bloating before & all of a sudden look pregnant, are in a lot of pain & haven't gone to the bathroom in days it may be something that requires more urgent attention. otherwise, though, it's more an issue of comfort, so try not to worry but don't hesitate to seek out ways that may make you more comfortable. i've found that a heating pad can be helpful; it doesn't fix anything per se but can feel good.

hope this helps (and doesn't just thoroughly confuse you!),

:) melissa

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p.s. bloating can also be caused by small bowel bacterial overgrowth (SBBO) which is generally something that happens in those with slow motility. there is a pretty easy test for this that a GI doc would be able to initiate.

p.p.s. lactose commonly causes bloating in those who are intolerant. cutting out dairy for a few days would be a fairly painless way to see if this might be an issue for you.

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