Why do you think Gastroparesis seems more prevalent in women than men? Well I could get into a physiological explanation of my opinion–> without a doctor’s degree, training, or knowledge. I could suggest the hormonal imbalances, ovarian cysts rupturing, structure of our bodies create a natural probability of statisical percent increasing our numbers higher than men. Then I could also tell you our empathy factor completely out weighs our male counterparts. What do I mean? When a woman is describing or has an active partner in a pregnancy – is there any doubt that a man will never fully understand what the feeling of labor & giving birth is about? This is the equivalent of trying to describe the levels of nausea, pain, fatigue, constipation, diarrhea, acid reflux with acidity, vomiting, Etc
It is very difficult to try to explain or fully convey the degree of pain created with colon in ertia, chronic intestinal pseudo- obstruction – if you have not walked through the experience (or labor giving birth) then top it with upper gi issues. If you are obstructed with bile and it will not be moved – it can perforate if you wait too long. It can cause days in the hospital to try to rehydrate & flush fluids to move the bile. This isn’t your normal “constipation” and throwing up green bile isn’t your regular “nausea & vomiting.” Part of this protocol requires a NG tube down your throat into your stomach to pull all the contents off, while helping with nausea. It is called “decompressing” to help move the bile.
Although it is a very very strange parallel, your body is having spasms to try to move the solid bile out. That is why a female can empathize easier. A baby IS NOT – IS NOT – IS NOT “bile” but your body is in spasms to move. Your body has an internal set of “instructions” if you will. Even if you are dealing with a large intestine (colon) which is paralyzed /dead. A stomach which has a loss of motility, a small intestine is questionable but functional compared to your large intestine at this point & time. All of your neuro pathways still know there is bile in your body which must come out. This begins to create a deep pain, symptoms from the bile not moving just as there are consequences to food not being digested as it should. Whether it sits too long or it moves too quickly enters the small intestines without the necessary nutrients or calorie laden without nutrition. This is part of the path to weight & malnutrition. The gases created from foods sitting in your stomach too long this is, in part, the path to small intestinal bacterial overgrowth.
Why break all this down and explain all of this? Because there are too many walking around with this bacterial overgrowth causing their tummies to swell in less than 15 minutes to the degree that someone would truly think they were 6-9 months pregnant. Do you know? Can you empathize with these people? Sometimes it is even a man.. Do you see how this could be so very very difficult? Do you see why I am picking up the two now and asking you to advocate on the behalf on those without a voice? They are also walking up to a checkout counter buying baby food (which is the only food digestible)& having their person checking ask, “When is your baby due?” We have some tough skinned, creative #Warriors , (who go home & cry) then there are others who break down in the check-out isle.
Are you seeing the picture clearer now? Now let me add another piece, ,,, you place a pack of adult depends in front of your check-out & a look of confusion may cross their face or they may not respond at all but having to do this — if you have not arrived at a place of “other people’s opinions do not rule my world.” If you have someone to pick these things up or able to order them it saves the looks & questions. It is a chance for advocacy if you in your #Warrior groove! Because you can simply say, “I am actually dealing with an incurable illness called Gastroparesis causing my food to not digest properly. It then creates gases causing my tummy to swell (not bloat- as you can see this is beyond bloat!) it helps to do baby food or smoothies when your digestive tract doesn’t work the way it should. (Touch the depends) yes it extends all the way through my body. Because it is all inside & most haven’t heard if it? It is understandable you didn’t know anything about it.”
If you are not strong enough at the moment to get your #Warrior on? There is a beautiful phrase my step-father shared in the true Southern tradition. “If you forgive me for not answering that question? I will forgive you for asking it.:-)”