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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Soilman has stomach or duodenal or both, ulcers. A doctor stuck a tube down his throat and looked at his stomach. He thinks this is why i have not been able to digest much since Apr 1.

I found that soymilk is keeping me from starving to death. If I sip it slowly I can absorb some of it. Large quantities, and just about everything else -- gets vomited up within 24 hours. So I've lost about 25 pounds in 3 weeks.

They wrote me a prescription for a drug that is supposed to clear up the ulcers "in 95 percent of the cases."
 

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Ugh, that sounds terrible. I'm sorry you're going through that.

I've never known what that feels like -- is it an acidic feeling?
 

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Did they say it was due to an h. pylori infection? I have been tested for that over and over to try to explain my stomach problems (but I don't have any ulcers, thank goodness). I hope you get well soon!
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Strix writes: "I've never known what that feels like -- is it an acidic feeling?"

Funny thing, it only hurts after I eat -- tho often many hours later. As long as i limit my diet to very slowly sipped soymilk (which is starting to make me nauseaus now that I've sipped several quarts over the last week) there is NO PAIN whatsoever. I just can't eat. Sometimes i feel all right for 10 hours -- then the pain -- and vomiting -- hits. So that's why i've stopped eating.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Austinswingrr, they want me to get tested for h pylori. If i have it, they will prescribe antibiotics. Otherwise they want me to fill a Nexium prescription.
 

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I hope for your sake that it is h. pylori!! They told me that it is very easily cured with antibiotics...too bad that's not what I have. I just get heartburn after every meal (without drugs) and get heartburn from certain foods (even with drugs). I have been on Prevacid for the last uhhhhh 5ish years. Tried a couple others that didn't work as well. Haven't heard of Nexium. Wish the best for you!
 

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Soilman, I am very sorry to hear about your condition. I really hope you work something out so that you can repair your hernia and get better and eat better and be up and around again. I am really concerned about you. Please keep us updated
 

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soilman, what does your doctor recommend you do? Vomiting that much and eating only soymilk is dangerous. Isn't your doc worried about your loss of electrolytes and such? I don't understand why a doctor would let a patient go on for so long like that.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
fairchild writes:

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soilman, what does your doctor recommend you do? Vomiting that much and eating only soymilk is dangerous. Isn't your doc worried about your loss of electrolytes and such? I don't understand why a doctor would let a patient go on for so long like that.

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The hospital emergency room gave me an normal saline iv to fix my dehydration, took x-rays to make sure I wasn't totally intestinally perforated and infected, and sent me home. Despite the fact that I said (truthfully) I was passing out when I vomited. They said the normal saline might help prevent me from passing out. In other words, yes, they didn't mind sending me home knowing I lived alone and might pass out when I vomited (knock my head on the bowl, fall in, and drown).

OK. I have 2 doctors dealing with this, the primary care phys, and the gastroenterologist. After I got back from the hospital I told the pcp, he got a same-day apptmnt with a gastro enterologist, who scheduled a cat scan for the next day and a gastric endoscopy for 3 days later. The endoscopy was how they discovered I had ulcers.

They prescribed Nexium which he said should clear up the ulcers in 2 weeks, and to make appointments for a blood test and a stool test for heliobacter pylori. So in 2 weeks I should be able to eat again, chances are 95 out of 100, they implied. Meanwhile, it is making me dizzy. And I still can't eat much. Beyond that, no, no other help. It is not their job. I kinda feel too weak from not eating, to spend 3 hours on a bus each way, to get the stool test and blood test tho. I took a taxi to-from the gastro endoscopy. But I don't want to spend $40 again for taxi fare for each test. I need to save that money for my hernia operation.

I'm sure they will give me more emergency hydration and electrolytes if I call an ambulance -- and then send me home again. That's about all they really are willing to do. That's how the system works. Unless I want to go into a nursing home. Find a vegan one. Haha.

I'd like to be part of a big loving vegan extended family, a real one not just a cyber one, but i'm not. If I were, I wouldn't be having these problems; but i'm not.
 

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I'm so sorry you're going through this Hell. Please let us know if you find out what caused the ulcers...the whole condition, even.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
fairchild, stomach ulcers are not considered to be a serious disease nor are they usually a life-threatening or limb-threatening disease. The chances of bad hemmorage are small. They are, in most cases, considered to be just a nuisance, unless they start hemmoraging, which is the exception rathr than the rule. And these days, with new drugs to control secretion of stomach acid at the nerve level, instead of patients simply having to buffer the acids by ingesting bases (such as Tums, Maalox, milk of magnesia, baking soda), which can upset electrolyte balance -- stomach ulcers apparently are now a problem that can often be cured within a few weeks. Never mind that the drugs are carcinogenic. In the past stomach ulcers would go on for years and years, but now this is the exception rather than the rule. The discovery of heliobacter pylori, and antibiotics which control it, has made ulcers less threatening, too.

The problem is not so much the ulcers, as it is my lack of family and friends to help me out for the next few weeks during which I will be weak. I can't substitute for them by hiring paid help because I need to save up every penny I can if I want to get my hernias fixed. The lack of family and friends seems largely due to my insistence on being vegan.
 

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first, I just want you to know I really feel for you, even though I don't know you. . . I wish there were something I could do to help.

have you thought about supplements instead of soymilk? I know it's fortified, but maybe something more calorie-dense would be better tolerated, since you could take in smaller quantities but get the same/more nutrition. I know genisoy (www.genisoy.com) is vegan, but I'm not sure about the rest. I have had chronic GI problems for awhile, decidedly not as severe as yours, but when I began losing weight from being too sick to eat, I ate things like that to try to keep getting nutrients into me and maintain my weight.

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I really sympathize with you about how the health care system has treated you - it's like patients aren't even people anymore - and I know it's not the same as someone who could come by and visit and help take care of you, but it's a similar emotion.

Please let us know how you're doing.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
matchgirl, I much prefer the nutrient profile of soymilk, made from whole soybeans and water, to that of "soy shakes" which are made from "isolated soy protein" -- the micronutrients are removed from it, as well as the wonderful high-calorie fat present in soybeans. Then highly refined corn sugar (fructose) is added. Then industrially produced vitamins. Genisoy shakes make no sense to me. If I want the vitamins I can just take a tablet -- the same industrially-produced vitamins. If I want the sugar I can add corn syrup or cane sugar -- same sugar devoid of anything else but 99.9 percetn pure sucrose or fructose. And I can add my own vanilla extract to soymilk, or some frozen rasberries or strawberries or whatever.

The health care system is not treating me any differently than it treats anyone else. My son is treating me perhaps differently than other sons may treat their father. My sister does not talk to me at all. All the rest of my relatives, i have no idea where they are, haven't spoken to any in about 20 years.

Genisoy shakes have no fat. You must have fat in your diet. Soymilk provide protein and fat in a relatively balanced ratio.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Also guar gum and cellulose gum are indigestible. These thickeners take up space and thicken the "shake" but are not a source of calories or micronutrients. They will have no food value, but may nevertheless take up space in my digestive system and become a challenge for my digestive system to deal with. They may not be a problem -- they are a form of soluble fiber. Or they may. I don't know. But they reduce the calorie-density of the shake, not increas it.

I don't think genisoy shakes are more nutrient dense than soymilk, if you compare them at the same level of hydration -- which is all that is important unless the hydration level provides a lot more water than you need -- not the case with soymilk, which pretty well balances caloric nutrients with the amount of water needed to process it.
 

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I'm sorry, I guess it was an ill-informed suggestion... It was a vegan brand recommended to me recently for weight gain, and the others I'd used in the past during GI difficulties to gain weight weren't vegan, so I didn't want to mention those.

I'm really sorry your situation with your family is so difficult.

I think mushroom has a much better suggestion... maybe even a local church, veg*n group/fellowship, etc would be able to do something like that... in the past I have been a part of groups like that which helped people by bringing them meals, helping them around the house, etc when they were ill or housebound for whatever reason.

I feel like I upset you with a poor suggestion, and I'm sorry, you've undoubtedly researched all your options by now... maybe there are other people on these boards who know more and can give you better advice.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Matchgirl writes:

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It was a vegan brand recommended to me recently for weight gain...

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If you don't have time to prepare you own shakes, starting with whole-soy soy milk, then a commercially prepared shake or shake mix containing whole-soy soy milk, may be a good idea. But unless there is some reason you must have zero fat in you diet, it makes no sense to me to make or buy a shake made with defatted soy protein (another way of saying soy protein isolate).

Aren't there vegan shakes on the market made with whole soy milk?

Also, many of the lightly sweetened soy milk brands, instead of being sweetened with the micro-nutrient- devoid "fructose," are sweetened with things like rice syrup or barley malt syrup -- which I think have some micronutrients. Though you will have to add more sweetener in order to turn lightly sweetened soy milk into a "shake." Whole soy milk is a good source of proteins, fats, and carbohydrates -- we need all three in our diet, in balanced amounts.

As a side note, I often find sweetened commercial products to be way too sweet for my tastes.
 
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