• 8 months ago

    Location specific IBS?


    This is a very weird question. I have relatively mild symptoms that are often associated with Irritable Bowel Syndrome: bloating, gas, very loose stools (sometimes after every meal), and the feeling that I can't completely void my bowels. I say these are relatively mild because they're never bad enough to stop me from going out in public, for example.

    Ok. Now for the weird part: they happen only where I live - in the DC area. If I go away, they cease immediately. E.g., I'm now in Pittsburgh. I arrived last night. I spent the whole day yesterday in the DC area - including Virginia and Maryland suburbs. I had pretty bad symptoms - lots of gas, and strange loose stools after meals. These all disappeared almost immediately after arriving (by car) in Pittsburgh last night. I've eaten anything I want today, and everything has been completely normal - no symptoms. But this is just an example. It happens whenever I leave the DC area.

    I've tried different diets. I don't drink tap water at all in the DC area. But still the symptoms return when I return home.

    I have no idea how this could be. There seems to be no correlation with any type of food or drink I put in my gut. The only correlation is with whether or not I'm in the DC area. If I travel far enough away - I often go to Canada, Pittsburgh, Europe - all symptoms disappear.

    Any thoughts?