This is my very first post ever. I stumbled onto this site through a google search, looking for answers to stomach pain and Tecfidera. The info on the board ELIMINATED MY STOMACH PAIN. I wanted to write and share for everyone out there in pain and ready to give up. PLEASE READ ABOUT MY EXPERIENCE. I hope it helps someone.
Quick synopsis....been diagnosed with RRMS for 3.5 years. Been doing Rebif but stopped because I simply could not handle the flu side effects and needles. Every day after an injection I felt terrible with migraines, etc. Started Tecfidera in early July. I am on week 3.
In weeks 1 and 2, I experienced flushing, itching, but no GI issues. I was excited. At the end of week 2, I began to experience VERY severe stomach issues...diarrhea, cramping, bloating, extreme stomach pain, DEBILITATING nausea and repeated vomiting. The pain was so severe it would wake me up in the middle of the night. Nothing I seemed to do helped. I was unable to work, in bed all day literally writhing in pain. The only advice my neurologist gave was to eat food and keep trying to stay with it for a month. Same with the Tecfidera nurses. I literally felt like I was going to die.
Then I found lots of helpful info on this site, particularly Ladymac's recommendations. LIFE CHANGING. If you haven't read her post yet, READ IT RIGHT NOW. I think this is the link:
After reading her posts, I called my neuro and requested an anti-nausea med and asked for permission to take Zantac. I have never had stomach issues before, and knew nothing about acid reflux. My stomach pain was sharp, severe and I felt like I had a tennis ball wedged underneath the left side of my rib cage. The combo of my doc's prescription for anti-nausea meds and the Zantac worked like a charm. Other than an occasional "twinge", MY STOMACH ISSUES ARE RESOLVED.
In a nutshell, this is what worked for me:
1) One hour before breakfast I take my prescription anti-nausea drug (Ondadsetron tablet, 4 mg) and OTC Zantac (Zantac 150, cool mint)
2) About 45 min later, sip/drink half a cup of hot tea for 5-10 min to get my body ready to eat (I never eat breakfast, so my body does not want to eat this early)
3) Eat breakfast (protein, carb, fat--scrambled egg with cheese, bacon on muffin or frozen meal like Weight Watcher's Egg Quesadilla)
4) Every hour until lunch eat 1 saltine cracker to keep something in stomach. Yes, I know you aren't hungry and are nauseous, but YOU HAVE TO EAT
5) At lunch, I eat some protein and soup or salad. My protein can be some grilled chicken, beef, 2 rolls of lunchmeat, etc
6) Continue to eat 1 saltine every hour until dinner
7) One hour before dinner, take my anti-nausea med and OTC Zantac.
8) Eat half of dinner, take pill, eat other half. Dinner must include protein, fat, starch/carb, etc. Tonight it was grilled chicken, a very small salad and some potatoes and cheese (another WW micro meal-used half as my side dish)
9) Do not lay down for at least 2 hours
10) DRINK WATER ALL DAY. I am drinking 10-12 large glasses. I have a tumbler with a straw and take it with me in the car, to work, while running errands, etc. This is really crucial
The neuro is very pleased. I am elated. I was ready to give up. Ladymac's advice saved the day. So, if you are in pain and reading this, please try her ideas and stick with them EXACTLY for at least 3 days. I hope you have as much success as I have had. It literally was a night and day difference. To everyone on the board who took the time to post tips and advice, THANK YOU!