IBS-D and pregnancy — The Bump
1st Trimester

IBS-D and pregnancy

hi there! Just want to warn everyone ahead of time this post talks about poop in great detail. I am pregnant for the first time!!! 8 weeks and 6 days!  I have been battling IBS-D (irritable bowel syndrome with diarrhea) for about 10 years now. When I first found out I was pregnant I had pretty bad diarrhea for about a week. Also, to clarify when I say “diarrhea” it is not straight liquid, more just large piles of mush with no shape (in all fairness I did warn you about the poop talk!). Around 6 weeks it slowed down quite a bit and was going every 2 days or so but I would go a lot when I did go. This past week (week 8) I have been back to having multiple large, mushy shapeless bowel movements everyday. Pregnancy is supposed to slow digestion but I often “see” what I ate in the toilet only 5-7 hours later which I feels very fast! I have an appointment and ultrasound next week so I will talk to my OBGYN about it then but I wanted to see if anyone here has gone through anything similar? 1) I have this fear that the diarrhea has come back because my hormones are dropping and I am going to miscarry. I do still have other symptoms though, just not many. Mostly fatigue, headaches and some nausea. 2) I am worried that my baby (and myself honestly) are not getting the necessary nutrients because everything passes through me so quickly.

I have some trigger foods that I cut out of my diet, but honestly I have never been able to fully control my IBS-D with diet. I also make sure I take my prenatal vitamin everyday. 

Thoughts? Advice? Reassurance?

thank you! 

Re: IBS-D and pregnancy

  • If you’re taking your vitamin your baby will get all the nutrients they need. Make sure you are staying hydrated. Around 8-12 weeks your placenta starts to take over hormone production and people tend to start seeing their symptoms change, so that might be related. Definitely discuss with your doctor.
    ME: 33  DH: 33 DD1: June '16 DD2: March ‘19 :::: Married since 2011 :::: USN Wife ::::
  • It’s hard but don’t read info symptoms too much. Some have every symptom in the book while others have hardly any. Pregnancy will slow things down and many women need stool softeners to stay regular. On the flip side, some will go thru bouts of diarrhea. I wouldn’t take that as a sign of pending loses and your OB should be able to give tips on coping with your IBS-D during pregnancy.
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  • My biggest problem with IBS-D and pregnancy is no longer being able to take the meds I use to help short-term. I was sick my first trimester for a couple weeks just like you said, but the second/third was actually really nice. The constipation others got due to pregnancy just evened out my IBS-D into how I suspect normal people live. Some anxiety bouts gave me a flare up, but much rarer than when I wasn't pregnant.

    Tl;Dr: it gets better!
  • I also have IBS and am 8 weeks 2 days today and have had a similar experience. I bought Metamucil thinking I was going to be constipated now that I was pregnant, but I often deal with diarrhea more often than not. Weeks 5-7 were terrible with the IBS, but it's finally starting to be normal more often than not. I wasn't too worried because the anti-nausea medicine I'm on (because between normal morning sickness + IBS, my stomach was all tore up) has a side effect of diarrhea, so I figured it might be that. I'm hoping that in a month or so, I can go off the anti-nausea meds and my IBS might be better like your experience @babybison. Fingers crossed. 
  • I have IBS-D too and I was just joking to my husband that little did I know, what I needed to do to cure it was get pregnant! I'm only 5 1/2 weeks now though so I'm bummed it seems the cure won't last.

    No advice but glad you posted about this topic.
  • So for anyone wanting an update, I am now at 12 weeks and 4 days and holy constipation Batman! Around 11.5 weeks things slowed down quite drastically and I have hardly pooped at all in 3 days. According to my doc this is normal especially entering the 2nd trimester. I never thought I would say this but I almost miss the diarrhea, the constipation is so much worse! 
  • @sparkles8991 I am now 11 weeks and was soooo constipted up until yesterday when I started going a lot.. now today I am peeing out my butt! I was just like you thinking my hormone levels are dropping but I’m sure they aren’t and this is just pregnancy.. I have my 12 week appt on Tuesday so can’t wait to see everything is ok in there! I’m done being in the first trimester.. it’s so scary!   
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