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Functional Abdominal Pain Syndrome/Centrally Mediated Abdominal Pain Syndrome

Discussion in 'General Discussion Subforum' started by Wings313, Mar 26, 2019.

  1. Wings313

    Wings313 Peer Supporter

    Hi, all:

    It's been a very long time since I've posted anything or been involved on the wiki, but I'm now here for a friend's son. He is about 14 years old (don't know exactly) and about 3 months ago suddenly developed severe abdominal pain below the umbilicus. He near constantly makes groaning sounds due to the pain. He's been to the Cleveland Clinic, and apparently there are others with this condition, but it goes by several names (clue #1 that it could be TMS). He is not responding to any of the normal treatments, he's not in school, and not surprisingly, he's depressed. I found the following information about the condition from iffdg.org:

    This condition is called centrally mediated abdominal pain syndrome (CAPS) – formerly known as functional abdominal pain syndrome (FAPS).

    CAPS is a functional GI disorder. There are no abnormal x-rays or laboratory findings to explain the pain. It occurs because of altered sensitivity to nerve impulses in the gut and brain, and it is not associated with altered motility in the intestines. CAPS is characterized by continuous or frequent abdominal pain that is often severe. It has little or no relationship to events such as eating, defecation, or menses.

    This sounds exactly like what he has and sounds very much like a TMS/PPD condition. Basically I'm posting here for a few reasons:

    1) Has anyone had experience with this specific or similar condition, either as a patient or a therapist/doctor?
    2) How do I gently and not offensively suggest to my friend that while the pain is very real, the cause may be psychological?
    3) Can anyone provide any more resources that I could share?

    This family has been devastated by this situation, and I feel terrible for them and especially the boy. You can imagine how uncomfortable, inconvenient and disruptive to life that near-constant groaning and moaning would be. And it could all potentially be fixed with TMS therapy.

    Thanks in advance.
  2. JanAtheCPA

    JanAtheCPA Beloved Grand Eagle

    We hear about these things more frequently these days - hard to say if it's epidemic, or if it's the ease of information transference. Probably both, since the pressures on children are monumental these days. We certainly have far more younger users of this forum than we did when I started this work in 2011.

    I have said the something like the following for a number of years: If they can't tell you what it is, but they give it a name anyway and add Syndrome or Disorder to the end, it's TMS.

    You might refer your friends to this article from NPR. There is some controversy about the methods described in this program, but 1) consider that this is a news article, and not an in-depth study, and 2) it's quite obvious that they are treating a severe and mysterious pain syndrome of teenagers (mostly girls in this case) with mindbody techniques:
    https://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2019/03/09/700823481/invisibilia-for-some-teens-with-debilitating-pain-the-treatment-is-more-pain (Invisibilia: For Some Teens With Debilitating Pain, The Treatment Is More Pain)
    Titus Groan likes this.
  3. Titus Groan

    Titus Groan Peer Supporter

    That sounds a similar to what I had, but it was called "Chronic Pelvic Pain Syndrome" which just meant that I got random pain in different parts of my abdomen (tummy, groin, bladder, lower back, prostate etc.) - I managed to conquer mine pre-realising it was TMS, but ultimately it was realising that it was linked to my anxiety that helped. Choosing to come off medication and just saying "no" whenever the pain turned up was what did it for me.

    Not sure if that's the same thing or not, but either way what your describing sounds a lot like TMS.
  4. Kozas

    Kozas Well known member

    I have stomach pain, for the last ~8 years every second of my day I feel pain in my abdomen.
    How I was finally convinced it's mental? Well, ALL the tests came back pretty much normal, and after 8 years my state didn't get worse. I mean seriously if you have something structuraql it's either gonna heal or worsen over time. But if doctors can't find nothing, and all the medications/treatments don't do anything, then what could be the answer?

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