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Exams and IBS Watch

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    Today, I have had a flare up of what I believe to be my IBS. I say that because my doctor never officially diagnosed me, just said that is what he suspects when I went to him two years ago. I tend to get these flare-ups due to intense stress, usually exam stress, but the symptoms are usually delayed (I had a flare-up last August after my May-June exams, my GCSEs, and also had one this March, after my January exams). My two main symptoms are extreme cramping as well as diarrhoea. My first question is, does this actually sound like IBS, which is what I have always believed it to be, or does it seem to be something else?

    My second problem is, I have two exams, one after the other (with no break) this Friday. This means I will be sitting in the exam hall for over three hours. As IBS is not on any of my medical records with the school, no arrangements have ever been made (or needed; as I said, the symptoms are delayed) for me. For this reason I don't think it will be possible to sort anything out now in terms of a separate room or being allowed out to the toilet etc. I am so worried. I take buscopan for the pain, but is there anything I can take to stop me going to the toilet, just for these three hours? Would love to know what works best for other IBS sufferers. Thanks in advance

    loperamide - available over the counter from pharmacies and supermarkets, marketed as diarrhoea relief.

    Try and reduce your stress. I've got IBS too and although there are dietary triggers for me, if I'm stressed it usually has just as big an impact on my bowel. Just taking a couple of hours off and doing something that takes your mind off helps alot for me.

    Also have you not had a sigmoidoscopy to see if it could be anything else?

    IBS in August due to stress of exams in May? Surely you're not stressed in August, you're enjoying your summer holiday?

    Either thats an incredibly delayed response, or there's another cause/something else going on.

    Ask them. It could be possible. Earlier this week I got my university exams moved to a separate room for the similar issues - I haven't been diagnosed with anything and they didn't even ask for something from my GP about it.

    Also, you are allowed to leave the exam room to go to the toilet. Just raise your hand and ask to go. They wouldn't want people soiling themselves whilst sitting an exam.
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Updated: May 17, 2012
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