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Imatinib Tummy Upsets, Imodium, and Water Intake


I am 6 months into my Imatinib journey and getting a fairly good response. I do suffer the often talked about side effect of multiple trips to the loo each day. After reading here about others with similar issues I have tried Imodium with some success at reducing the issue and also tummy tenderness. However, I have recently increased my water intake each day by about 2 litres as I realised I was drinking less since starting Imatinib. Since increasing my water intake I have not needed to take Imodium. Has anyone else found that drinking more water helps with tummy issues? Less dashing to the loo and less discomfort. To be clear, my water intake has gone from sufficient to plenty, I am not drinking silly amounts. Many thanks for your input.

I don’t know about water intake but I can tell you that it’s important to eat a full meal when taking imatinib. I did damage to my stomach as a result of not eating much when taking the medication. I even went as far as grinding the pill and dissolving it in water taking it as a drink. That was not smart I can tell you as I developed severe heartburn. Take it from me, take the pill on a full stomach and try to be consistent taking it at the same time everyday. Your body will just. Give it time. Also it is my opinion to take as few medications as possible giving your body a chance to metabolise the important life saving compounds. Good luck.

Thanks for your input Pojo, and I take on all you say. I am only 6 months into Imatinib 400mg daily. As you say I always take it at the same time and after breakfast. Even if I dont really feel like anything I always follow the instructions and take after food.
My tummy has really played up as forecast by my consultant, rushing to the loo has become an unwelcome part of life, but worth it with this life saving medication.
The increase in water intake has improved that tummy issue so much, I thought it worth mentioning. I now have a large glass of water perhaps three or four times a day more than I used to, and weirdly, tummy has calmed right down, much less discomfort in lower belly and much less unwelcome urgency......
Thanks for taking the time to respond. As with all illness its easy to feel you are alone, and I realise this is a farly quiet forum, so, thanks for your response and good luch with your journey.

BTW, havnt taken imodium for 3 weeks and thats a big change :)

Come to think of it I never really drink that much water. Even now. I think I will follow your lead. With imatinib I had a whole bunch of annoying problems. One of which was gas. Maybe if I drank more water that would have lessened. Thanks Smee I will learn from you. I’m gonna drink more water when I take the pills. Never too late to learn something new.

I can relate to this! I drink lots of water (3+ litres at least a day) but also go to the gym, so I also take a sugar free electrolyte with water after the gym or after a visit to the loo as and when that happens now

Hi all,
I am still drinking more water, about 3 to 4 pints more than I feel the need for, spread through the day. After a month of this regime I now have a fairly normal tummy. As a side effect my weight is falling, albeit very very slowly, as lack of thirst gives me less munchies. Attacking the biscuits less. No immodium, which is nice.
Onto the next issue :) look elsewhere for my post today about kidney cystatin c test.