Kacie Babbit, an accomplished equestrian who attends Bryant University, has suffered from stomach pain for more than a decade. When she was in high school, her stomach was a little better. Then one day she was at the barn tacking up a horse and, as sometimes happens with horses, got kicked in the face. She suffered a fractured jaw and five fractured teeth, lost one tooth, and needed 22 stitches. Despite this harrowing experience, Kacie continues to love horses and considers riding essential to her overall physical and mental health. Here, in her own words, is her story on how she was put on the path to recovery.
After the accident with the horse, I was not able to eat solid foods for four months. This was painful on my stomach. My stomach started to get worse and worse. It felt like someone was beating up my intestines. I went to one doctor and had every test under the sun, but that physician never really listened to me.
My mom was seeing Dr. Jennifer Nayor with Emerson Health Gastroenterology and recommended I see her. In addition to gastro issues, I have struggled with body dysmorphia and bulimia. Dr. Nayor was the first doctor who really talked to me to understand the nitty gritty and find out what is wrong with my stomach.
I started to see her in June 2020 and could tell she wanted to really get to know me. As with many people who suffer from GI issues, managing symptoms is not often easy, and finding a cure is not simple. For the first time ever, a doctor wanted to hear my story. I have learned that it takes a trusted partnership with your doctor, some experimenting with different medications and lifestyle changes, and patience until you see results.
I feel more relaxed now. I have become more able to control the pain and have had more control over my vomiting and the pain that comes with it. I feel like I have a doctor in my corner who is supporting me. Dr. Nayor is a doctor for the long run. She makes me feel so comfortable and I trust her. This helps my stomach relax.
One of the things I love about her is we have conversations; she takes time to understand me. She does not blame my stomach on one thing or send me to a lot of different tests or throw medicine at the pain. If I did not start going to her this summer, my stomach would be a lot worse than it is. She is always there for me. She helped me get through a challenging semester in college. I took six classes in the fall, which is a heavy load. She helped me identify foods I could eat at school, so I was well fed. My parents are so supportive, my dad makes food for me and brings it to me when I am at school.
One of the important things I learned is that I feel much better having a doctor I trust. It can be hard to find a diagnosis with stomach conditions. But once you find a doctor to help you out of the dark, it is so relieving. Medicines are not always the answer — finding a doctor who believes in treating patients as people is important.
I want people to know my story because I do not want anyone to go through what I did. I am on the path to good health now. It was a journey to get here, but with Dr. Nayor on my team I already feel better.
Developing a Relationship With Your GI Doctor
Dr. Jennifer Nayor talks about developing a relationship with your gastroenterologist and tips to make it a valuable experience.
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About Dr. Jennifer Nayor
Dr. Jennifer Nayor is a board-certified gastroenterologist with Emerson Health Gastroenterology. Dr. Nayor performed her residency at Johns Hopkins Hospital. Please visit Dr. Nayor’s physician profile to learn more and request an appointment.