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Kamper

Va Hospital

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Hello everyone I am new here.

A quick background about me.

I am a 22 year old Iraq veteran. I spent 4 years with the Marine Reserves (Infantry). With one tour in Iraq. I never had any digestive issues before Iraq but after I returned things started to change. I always had gas and cramping but never thought anything of it. Ever since I returned I have never been able to put a pattern on my bowel movements. I have a feeling it stems from when I ate local food which played havoc on my digestive track.

Then last February (weeks before my wedding) I had lower right abdominal pain and went through a barrage of tests from stool samples, to CT scans, to x-rays. Even gave me IBS medication to see if that helped (you guessed it.. it didn't) All by civilian doctors. All came back normal so they sent me to a GI specialist and he suggested using a heating pad to make sure it wasn't muscular-skeletal. Well low and behold my back started having issues so we found that, but that still doesn't explain all the intestinal issues. I was going to start Physical Therapy for my back until I discovered that it was going to cost me about $1000 before insurance. So I went to the VA.

The VA did help, got me into PT and even ran an ultrasound to see if I might have gallstones (I didn't) He suggested for me to try eliminating certain food groups starting with dairy and then moving on to others to see if that had any effect.

Well dairy had no effect and then I just decided to deal with it and I have been doing that for the past 8 months. Until we talked to one of our neighbors who has Celiac Disease and was sharing the symptoms and red lights started going off. Low and behold I remembered my aunt having a wheat issue so I gave her a call. Turns out she was diagnosed with C.D. and my father has similar symptoms (which oddly went away when he was on the Atkins diet).

So I called the VA and left a message and they called back several hours later. I told them of my findings and they said that they would talk to my doctor and the head doctor about testing options. I told him I could not go on a wheat free diet until after the tests as it can give false negative (I thank all of you here for that information) at which point he said that they would call back tomorrow afternoon because the head doctor doesn't come in until 1:30. So I will find out tomorrow after noon if the VA is going to redeem itself for some of their other issues. Please hope and pray that they have some common sense.

Sorry for the long post

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Welcome Kamper!

It sounds like me that you are one of us already (just awaiting testing ;) ). Your symptoms as well as your strong family history points in that direction.

Whether or not your testing indicates Celiac, a positive dietary response is the best diagnosis....and it don't cost a thing.

I am happy for you. It sounds like this may be the end of your discomfort and a new day.


Lisa

Gluten Free - August 15, 2004

"Not all who wander are lost" - JRR Tolkien

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Sounds like you might have your answer. I agree with Momma Goose - no matter what the VA says, I'd go ahead and try the diet. With your family history, it certainly can't hurt. And remember that gluten is wheat, barley, rye and oats - not just wheat (I noticed you just mentioned wheat in your post and wanted to make sure you go completely gluten-free!) Welcome and good luck!


Gluten-Free since September 15, 2005.

Peanut-Free since July 2006.

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No word from the VA so I left a message mentioning again that I can't change my diet until after tests and that I am rather miserable.

They have until the new year to redeem themselves at which point I get some decent insurance and then go the civilian route. So there is a good chance that I will be glutening myself for 3 more months. <_<

(A large part of me wonders why they want to have socialized health care nation wide. They can't even run the VA health care system which is an example of socialized health care.)

AMERICA where everyone can get fair health care!... after waiting for months in line.. and in pain!

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