View Full Version : side effects of skipping Ultrase

11-18-2005, 11:02 PM
I have a question that I hope someone might be able to answer. I've been forgetting to take my Ultrase for about a week straight and because of it I have the usual cramps and going to the bathroom all the time. Well lately I've been losing weight, could the skipping Ultrase be the only reason?

11-19-2005, 01:46 AM
If you aren't taking Ultrase, you aren't breaking down and absorbing fat-solubule nutrients, which would greatly contribute to weight loss. I find that Ultrase is the easiest thing for me to remember... between the foul smells, cramps and constant need for a bathroom, I find it very hard to forget them.


25 w/cf

11-19-2005, 01:50 AM
I hear ya brotha, once in a blue moon, I might forget like maybe 1 time a week but not every week.

11-19-2005, 03:33 AM
Yes, skipping your Ultrase is probably the reason. Sometimes I'll forget (like when I go out to eat), but luckily I rarely feel the side effects. I might get a cramps now and then, but not very often. I DO remember most of the time, though. I have a little section on my dinning room table with all of my oral meds on it, so every time I go in the kitchen to get something to eat, my pills are right there so I can't forget. You might wanna try something like that if you're having trouble remembering.

11-19-2005, 04:13 AM
FYI, Ultrase is just a brand name for the digestive enzymes needed to break down the nutrients for foods.

Some patients may use Creon, some may use Pancrease, or even Viokase. (all of them have a difference of balance to the active ingredients)
As I was growing up, I had Viokase in powder form (YUCK!!), and then went from Pancrease in capsule, to Cotazym-S.

The enzymes have 3 basic active ingredients: Lipase, Amylase, and Protease.
the Lipase is used to digest fats, and there are three types, one type produced in the mouth, one in the liver, and the one we more than likely need, is the one produced in the pancrease.
Amylase is used to change complex sugars (and starches) into simple sugars for the body to digest. Two kinds, one produced through the salivary glands, and the other, also one we are more than likely in need; is produced by the pancreas into the small intestine.
Last of the active ingredients, Protease, is an enyme, used in the aid of digestion of proteins, basically.
(disclaimer-this is what I resarched, so anyone correct me if I'm wrong, ok)
Basically, due to the mucus blockage in the pancrease, the enzymes needed are not being supplied. The result was to give enzymes to make up for what was not being produced by ourselves.

I was using other forms of "digestive aids" in Japan, but was shocked to find out what it really was! (Boy, did my ex stiff me!) When I realized that it WASN'T the same, I looked at it like this; In order to get the nutrients I needed, I had to eat twice the amount of food, but nearly 3/4 of it would just pass through my body (sometimes painfully), and that would be just to keep up on nutrients, etc.
With eating a normal amount without enzymes, anytime I ate, the nutrients wouldn't be sufficient, and my body would begin to break down, and I'd always be hungry.

Probably, in my case, I was both mis-absorbing nutrients, and anytime I had something high in saturated fats (animal, or vegetable), I'd have to run to the bathroom every hour, (And, sometimes say, "What the heck did I eat wrong, this time!!") because my body didn't absorb it.
My weight went down from about 175 to 160 my first year here, but leveled off from then. If I ate enough, and was carefull, I could gain, but it would burn off after I went back to my daily routine. Up until a few years ago, I was pretty active, including having to walk quite a bit (No car for me). Though I'm still perplexed as to how I could gain so fast in a few months. I wonder if it could be bloating has started.
Now, I found some "over-the-counter" enzymes, and they help me, maybe too much 'cause I don't wanna be the fattest CF'r in the world! (good for some, but not for me!)
Anyway, long answer, but I hope it was very helpful as to answer why weightloss (and stomache aches) occurs when not taking enzymes.

(P.S. Lilith--good idea about the medicine section! My wife doesn't have a place for my meds, so the table is full of medicine bottles--You'd think it was a pharmacy! But I rarely forget with that method)

11-19-2005, 05:09 AM
I wanted to ask the last person who posted, what kind of over-the-counter enzyme are you taking and how good is it?

11-19-2005, 11:16 AM
When I was a little girl - about 6 or 7, I stopped taking my pills. I didn't tell my parents, I just decided I didn't want to take them anymore. I ended up with a bowel obstruction. I rarely forget now. I have tried to alter them to help with weight loss (I know, I know - a CFer who wants to lose weight - but I might indeed be the world's fattest CF person - I have about 25% body fat - I think), but the repercussions of taking less or no enzymes is far worse to me than a little extra padding around the middle. I keep a bottle in the kitchen, a small bottle in my purse, a bottle in my glove box and also a bottle in my husband's car, so though I do forget sometimes, it is rare.

11-19-2005, 01:44 PM
I agree with the others...more than likely you are losing weight because you aren't taking your enzymes. Basically, the food isn't being absorbed into your system, just going into the toilet. I just started enzymes myself about two months ago, I started to lose weight rapidly (hey, I needed to get rid of some of it anyway LOL), about almost a year of suffering with eating anything fatty. The docs finally diagnosed the pancreatic insufficiency, it is almost like day and night...I am careful with what I eat, I am actually still a little bit overweight (I had lost almost 100 lbs over a year and a half, lets just say I am not the typical CF'er..my pancreas was working fine until about a year ago) I always remember to take them these days or I suffer the consequences almost immediately if I don't, they are next to me at home, in my pocketbook etc....I have them everywhere so that if I decide on a meal or snack, I know I always have some nearby. Hugs Jenn <img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-smile.gif" border="0">

11-21-2005, 12:19 AM
In reply to "anonymous's" question;

Under my unusual circumstances, I had ordered enzymes via the internet (actually, my wife did), and simply put, the're not as reliable as the prescription medications you (You, meaning CF patients in general) are taking.
I'm fortunate to have a sister as a P.A., so she could answer my question about the differences between the over-the counter and prescription type medications. Her reply was that medications that do not pass FDA standards, are not within the range to be considered "Prescription", and this would include "Herbal" related medications (her quote).
Without getting into a debate, nor causing an issue, simply put, the medications that I'm using is the type that has a large deviation to it's active ingredients, and can vary depending on the lot. Unlike the FDA certified medications, the medications not certified won't be as "potent" as the prescribed medications, and for both reasons (Not FDA approved, and not as potent) the cost will be lower.
Until I figure out a way to get a prescription "Called In", and get "the real McCoy", I may have to rely on whatever sources are available at the moment.
I certainly do not recommend anyone presently taking prescribed medications, to go with the "similar type" if they are not FDA certified and can be filled "without a prescription".
However, I have seen the same medications that the CF Pharmacy offers on other internet home pages during my search for enzymes. I also will not endorse any of those home pages, either. So, please "Enter at your own discression".