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Ask Dr. Gott 1/30

A medical reason for grouchiness?

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Posted: January 29, 2007 6:02 p.m.
Updated: February 13, 2007 5:00 a.m.
DEAR DR. GOTT: My wife has to urinate a lot. She is tired most of the time and has no desire to do anything. She's too grouchy too often, doesn't have much sex drive, her ankles are swollen and she's unusually puffy up to her waist.
    She has mitral valve prolapse, but the doctor says it is of no danger to her health.
    She eats a lot of salt and sugar but is really healthy. She is 44, weighs about 120 pounds and is 5 feet 4 inches tall. Could you tell me what could be wrong with her? Please answer soon. It's driving me nuts.
    DEAR READER: Fluid retention, called "edema," can be the result of a variety of health issues, including heart disease, kidney disorders, inappropriate salt consumption, vein blockage and others.
    Your wife's frequent urination and swelling of the legs and lower body suggest that the kidneys are not clearing out excessive fluid, perhaps because of weak heart action, which could be worsened by excess salt in her diet.
    I urge your wife to meet with her primary-care physician for an exam, which should include an analysis of her legs and heart, followed by appropriate blood tests to check for anemia, kidney failure and mineral levels.
    Her doctor may choose to refer her to a specialist, an option that I would endorse, depending on the lab findings. Also, some scanning procedures should be carried out, such as a chest X-ray and possible CT scan.
    Your wife's edema should not be ignored. In addition to the appropriate medical follow-up that I have suggested, she should place herself on a low-salt, low-sugar diet. This would include no table salt or salty foods, such as TV dinners, dill pickles, anchovies and junk food. Let me know what the testing shows and how this health problem is resolved.

    DEAR DR. GOTT: You asked your readers to respond to any experience they have had with Digestive Advantage. Well, I wanted to let you know that I have suffered with an irritable bowel for many years and have had severe bouts of diarrhea. My husband read your article about an alternative treatment for IBS and showed it to me. We went to the drug store that day and purchased a package of Digestive Advantage IBS. I took a pill immediately. All I can say is Digestive Advantage IBS is a great product, because my diarrhea has stopped, and I wish I'd known about Digestive Advantage IBS years ago. It would have given me back a normal life instead of one that always revolved around a bathroom.
    Thank you ever so much for writing about Digestive Advantage IBS in your column. It has truly helped me.
    DEAR READER: You're welcome. Other readers have also experienced striking improvement with this product.
To give you related information, I am sending you a copy of my Health Report "Irritable Bowel Syndrome."
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