Today I had an irritable bowel syndrome attack, nothing too out of the ordinary for me. I had coffee in the morning so it wasn't exactly a surprise that I was running to the bathroom all afternoon. When I have IBS attacks I also tend to have urinary urgency and increased urinary frequency, as I did today. They've found that urinary dysfunction is present in up to 50% of women with IBS, since the bladder is made up of smooth muscle like the intestines. Anyway, I wouldn't have worried at all since that's a normal abnormality for me, except that when I went to go lay down after one bathroom session, I started absentmindely feeling/massaging my gut and back area. My abdomen felt fine. But on the left side of my back, under the last rib, it was really tender and a little painful when I pressed on it. When I compared the other side it was tender too, but not quite as much. I compared it to the rest of my back and to my abdomen, and nowhere else felt as uncomfortable. And of course, now that I've poked and prodded those two spots a lot to try and figure it out, they are a bit sore even when I'm not touching them.
But are they sore just because I was poking them? After all the whole reason I started prodding was because it felt tender and a little painful.
Info: sexually active, monogamous, on NuvaRing, 25yro female. I had one UTI 4 years ago.
Last week I felt really tired and had a bit of a sore throat and stuffy nose, no other symptoms.
This week I have been feeling perfectly normal, with the exception of the IBS today. I didn't start having increased urinary frequency/urgency until my IBS started acting up; it was normal up until that point. No pain on urination, just the heaviness of not being able to fully empty the bladder/having to go in stops and starts. Which again, happens during IBS attacks for me. I did have to hold it longer than usual earlier this morning, before the IBS flared.
So do I need to go 'OH MY GAWD SILENT KIDNEY INFECTION' (as if it were stones I'd be in agony right now) or do I just go 'Meh, one of those times I get tender spots?' I get them now and then in other areas, like near my collarbone, without ill effect. Could it be coincidence that this time the tender areas were by the kidneys, since they weren't actually aching or anything before I started palpating in that area?
Help a hypochondriac out -- give me an answer one way or the other. Should I be worrying about kidney involvement? Or should I not be worrying unless urinary frequency continues tomorrow after the IBS is over/I start having other urinary tract signs/I get serious signs like fever and lethargy? Like many people coming to VP on such issues I am a poor graduate student with shitty insurance, so I'd really like to avoid spending the money if it's likely I'm overreacting.