is my fatigue due to GERD?

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canadave
New Member


Date Joined Mar 2008
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 3/31/2008 8:50 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi all,

New here, just wanted to ask a question about what might be going on with me.

I'm a 36 y.o. male. about four years ago, I came down with a sudden virus that gave me vertigo and made me bedridden. A few days later I was okay to get up, but felt incredibly tired for quite a while. Eventually I had a test done on my inner ear, and found that I had lost 40% function in my left inner ear due to what was post-diagnosed as a probable "inner ear viral infection."

Around the same time (not sure exactly how perfectly the events coincide, but fairly close), I started to feel a bit strange in terms of my abdomen. Hard to explain--a sort of unsettled, vague, tense, ill-defined kind of feeling, centered just under my breastbone. Almost a "butterflies" or "breathless" feeling. It's not the classic "burning," but it's a cousin. It's not quite "nausea" in the sense of wanting to throw up, but it's not far off...it's a queasy feeling of general unwellness, without feeling a need to vomit at all. I also slowly developed heartburn, not blindingly painful or anything, but occurring fairly often--enough to become an annoyance.

I went on Prevacid for a while, but that didn't help. Eventually wound up at Nexium, and that seemed to help a little bit. In the meantime, because of the heartburn, weight loss, abdominal issues, and the mysterious chronic fatigue and general feeling of "unwellness", my doctor had me go through various tests. First a battery of blood tests (checked thyroid, blood sugar, many other likely things...all normal), then a barium X-ray of my stomach (normal), then finally an EGD. The doctor who performed the EGD (who I never saw again) wrote out a report saying the esophagus looked normal, but there were symptoms of "a touch of GERD" present. I stopped taking the Nexium after a while (it got too expensive)....and I was okay for about a year.

Fast-forwarding to today....I'm feeling the same symptoms again, off and on, for the past year and a half. Some days I feel "sort of okay", but most days I feel pretty "off". On the worst of those days, I'm irritable, fatigued, get tired after only a little activity, and generally don't look forward to doing anything or interacting with anybody ("malaise" is the word, I believe). I do still get heartburn often, and there's the constant vague strange feeling in my abdomen that comes and goes in severity. One day, I suddenly realized I felt totally fine, and it was like the sun shining through the clouds--I was on top of the world, giddy, for a few hours, and then slowly slid back into whatever this is.

What I find myself doing is kind of gently massaging the area under my breastbone and slightly to the left....it's some sort of instinctual thing, as if there's something irritated under the skin there and I'm trying to soothe it. As for foods, nothing I do seems to affect how I feel--some days I'm not TOO bad, some days I feel really crummy, and sometimes that changes by the hour. The scary part is, I feel like I'm getting worse very slowly and gradually--four years on from when I first felt this.

I'm probably forgetting a bunch of things in my tale, but that's the gist of it.

I guess my main question is: can GERD cause extreme fatigue along with irritability? I can't get a straight answer off the Internet from the extensive research I've done online. Another question--does GERD cause a "general feeling of unwellness" and malaise, particularly with that feeling centered below the breastbone? I almost feel like sometimes, if I reach my fingers under my sternum and "lift" it away a bit from my body, it almost "relieves pressure" on everything below, and I almost feel like it's a little better. Is that something associated with GERD?

I just moved, so I'm in the process of finding a new doctor so I can go and have a chat, but I just wanted to hear from some folks who are directly involved with GERD to get a sense of whether it's a case of "yeah, it's all due to GERD" or "could be GERD, but sounds like there's something else going on." Grasping at straws here.

Thanks for listening....
Dave

Zigzag2
New Member


Date Joined Mar 2008
Total Posts : 8
   Posted 4/1/2008 12:57 PM (GMT -6)   
From my perspective, this type of fatigue comes from anxiety and depression. At least that is true in my case. (Although in your case it may be something post-viral.) I get up feeling pretty much okay and then, at the first "symptom" of GERD (generally some little twinge) I feel panicky and hopeless, and then exhausted. I, like you, have moments where everything feels normal, or what normal used to feel like, only to descend into some physical sludge where I don't want to move. I do know that anxiety can cause a host of symptoms by itself that manifest physically.

stkitt
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 32602
   Posted 4/2/2008 8:03 AM (GMT -6)   

Good Morning Dave, You have alot going on and I agree your sx maybe be anxiety or depression or a combination of the two.

We have a great forum for Anxiety and Panic as well as a Depression forum too.  Please take a look at the threads on those forums.

Take Care
Kitt


 
Kitt, Moderator: Anxiety ~ Panic  ~ Crohn's
Not a mental health professional of any kind
It is health that is real wealth and not pieces of gold and silver.~Mahatma Gandhi~
 


HappilyWrapped
Regular Member


Date Joined Oct 2007
Total Posts : 182
   Posted 4/2/2008 8:52 AM (GMT -6)   
Thought I'd offer my 2 cents.

I was diagnosed with GERD back in 2000 - had had the symptoms for years, but finally went to a GI in 2001. I took Protonix for years. There was a lot of esophageal damage even with the Protonix and the reflux was so bad, I'd wake at night choking on my own "liquids". Protonix does not stop reflux, just neutralizes the acid, so the liquid was constantly up in my throat while laying down. Even a wedge pillow did not help.

I noticed I was sleepy during the day and would fall asleep at the wheel driving. I was tired during the day although I was physically in bed for 7-8 hours per night. I would wake often during the night to move around or cough - not a real total wakeup, but enough to remember moving around. I was tested for sleep apnea at two different clinics and both determined I did not have sleep apnea. However, I continued to have the symptoms of fatigue during the day that went with sleep apnea.

In October 2007 I had a Nissen Fundoplication. My reflux is gone. All sleep apnea symptoms are gone. I sleep straight through the night and get a full restful sleep. It appears that my body didn't enter a deep rem sleep when I was having GERD symptoms because I was waking enough to move around or cough when reflux happened. Sometimes I remember moving and sometimes I didn't fully wake enough to remember, but was awake enough to move around. In other words, I just wasn't getting a proper night's restorative sleep.

Not sure if this answers your question, but the removal of reflux definitely affected my sleep and I no longer feel tired during the day. The difference was very noticeable from the very first week after surgery.

Good luck to you.

poonie
New Member


Date Joined Apr 2010
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 8/24/2010 12:12 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Dave - Did you ever find a solution to your issues?

skooby
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2005
Total Posts : 205
   Posted 8/24/2010 12:28 PM (GMT -6)   
Can the meds cause fatigue. I noticed since starting them i get very tired.

stkitt
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 32602
   Posted 8/24/2010 5:33 PM (GMT -6)   
Dave only posted once back in March of 2008.  This is an old thread.  You may want to post a new thread with an intro and share with us  your questions and concerns
 
Thanks and welcome to HealingWell poonie.
~~Kitt~~
Moderator: Anxiety/Panic, Osteoarthritis, GERD/Heartburn and Heart/Cardiovascular Disease.
www.healingwell.com

"If you can't change the world, change your world"

Rodie
New Member


Date Joined Nov 2010
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 11/17/2010 10:43 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi everyone,
I am a 37 year old male. I have the same symptoms in my upper stomach as Dave, although I do not have any heartburn. Actually, my heartburn has seemed to go away ever since I have had the discomfort in my upper stomach. I also have been very lightheaded in the late morning, afternoon and early evening. It is a very spacey and heavy feeling, almost like I am going to faint. It is driving me crazy. I am not myself anymore, but seemed to happen overnight. All bloodwork was normal, but going back to the doc to take further tests and get a gameplan in place. I have been taking nexium for the past 3 weeks, does not seem to be working. I am trying to figure out if the lighthead and spacey feeling is related to my stomach discomfort. The discomfort in my stomach comes and goes, but the lightheaded and spacey feeling does not. I have never been depressed or have anxiety, but I do teach special needs, so I am under a little stress. This thing is wearing on my mind, and hope to have an answer because I want my life back. Please help-
Todd

couchtater
Elite Member


Date Joined Jul 2009
Total Posts : 12405
   Posted 11/17/2010 7:25 PM (GMT -6)   
Rodie, there's no need to repeat post. We read everyone here. Please start your own thread to introduce yourself.
Joy

droper
Regular Member


Date Joined Mar 2010
Total Posts : 56
   Posted 11/18/2010 8:03 PM (GMT -6)   
From my perspective GERD is a symptom.

salmanc
New Member


Date Joined Mar 2011
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 3/14/2011 12:01 PM (GMT -6)   
ACID REFLUX and FATIGUE, can acid reflux be associated with Fatigue? In my case definitely. I get reflux when i eat certain foods but it isnt massively major. Then i get fatigue and tiredness throughout the day followed by sensitive skin and my inner abdomen all around feels kind of sensitive. Feel acid back of throat after food.


i have the EXACT same symptoms as Dave. An irritation below left of the breastbone that makes me want to massage it.

I get tired/spaced out slightly vertigo symptoms when i look down at the keyboard.

Definite acid but not waking up at night spluttering with acid in mouth. Mild acid back of throat.

Feel tired in the morning when I wake up. Afternoon get a bit of energy back.

Cant really go running anymore just dont have motivation. seems when i do run its just on adrenaline rather than energy.

Feel tired after eating.

Go up the stairs carrying something and I feel slightly out of breath and legs feel very tired.

Weight loss (currently weigh 12.5 stone) 79.37 kg

Got definite brain fog, dont feel myself, even typing this is making me feel a little funny!

Definite depression type thing, 2 weeks ago had suicidal type thoughts, feeling low, emotional, things seem to be far more magnified in this state. Even mild shouting upsets me more than usual. Just want quiet.

Dont feel like i used to feel full of energy and wanting to do stuff. Just yawning and want to sleep.

Checked thyroid, all fine, small lump on neck found to be an enlarged node not dangerous, slightly enlarged thyroid.

Feel heart is racing all the time, eyes feel like they are tired. Skin on stomach feels sensitive to touch in the area below breastbone.

Im glad there are others feeling this too. Seems like a condition that has been left to linger and nothing really proper has been done about it.


Possible Solution by me.
Personally I feel I have too much acid in my body and it has passed the level that it can cope. There is too much acid in my body I believe and I tried eating more alkaline foods to see what happens. I recommend this to everyone. Apart from this I would suggest the following:

Early morning wake up
Sleep no later than 10pm
DO NOT eat after 7
Try eating Bio yoghurt natural yoghurt NO sugar throughout the day a couple of spoons.
Morning eat some oatmeal with 2tbsp honey and almonds. I eat that as breakfast.
If hunger pangs, have water ROUTINELY through the day. Try 2 litres at least a day. Mineral water is probably better.
Try and get routine.
Slowly, i think your body will take a few months to get back to normal but i truly believe its about what we are eating and this is why this is happening. There is no other cause, with general malaise. First try the change of diet/sleep/excercise then see what difference it made, If nothing then you know its something in your body which may be serious.
My sis said to try this first, shes a doctor and said theres nothing else wrong with me.

I want to believe there is so at least i know! but im going to try this.

Any help appreciated!!




turn

couchtater
Elite Member


Date Joined Jul 2009
Total Posts : 12405
   Posted 3/14/2011 5:10 PM (GMT -6)   
Welcome to HW.
You do sound like you have gerd, but something else is there too.
Have you been tested for sleep apnea? People with thyroid problems sometimes have sleep apnea.
Answer these questions: (yes for any of them and you need to talk to your doctor.)
1. Do you fall asleep when you get still?
2. Do you feel like you're waking up at night to change positions a lot? And it's not from pain.
3. Do you snore?
4. Do you wake up with a dry mouth?
5. Do you wake up tired? Like you hadn't been to sleep?
Joy

ilovelife
New Member


Date Joined Mar 2011
Total Posts : 5
   Posted 3/14/2011 5:11 PM (GMT -6)   
I have been learning so much about myself lately & how medication can really mess up your body. If you are taking medications look on this site to see what they are doing to others & look at my post.

salmanc
New Member


Date Joined Mar 2011
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 3/14/2011 6:25 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Couchater. Thank you for your kind words.

In answer to your questions:

1. No i do not fall asleep when i am still
2. Yes i do wake up sometimes to change positions but not loads
3. I sometimes snore when im really tired
4. I do wake up with a very dry mouth
5. I wake up like I havent slept

My doc told me this is to do with Acid in my belly which goes up and is causing referred pain in my muscles specifically my back and just in between my shoulder blades, a kind of dull achiness tiredness like when you go to the gym and you wake up the next morning aching. Like that.

Also, sometimes when i have water I feel like its just coming back up or not being washed down at all. Could this be a kind of hernia?? my doc is useless.

I will check out sleep apnea. Im assuming there is a treatment for it.

couchtater
Elite Member


Date Joined Jul 2009
Total Posts : 12405
   Posted 3/14/2011 6:55 PM (GMT -6)   
Treatment for sleep apnea is a Cpap machine. You'll need a sleep study to get the right perscription level. It also helps push the acid down at night (bonus!).

The water coming back up is probably from the weak LES valve in your stomach. It's not tight so you're getting leakage.
Joy

salmanc
New Member


Date Joined Mar 2011
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 5/10/2011 12:13 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi All, well i just thought I would give you an update.

My GERD has slowly got a bit better by taking Omeperozole a Proton Pump Inhibitor at 20mcg a day but i didnt want to take that long term so I decided to just do that for around 8 weeks even though the docs would have you on that or stronger meds your whole life!

I still do wake up with aching in my upper back and feeling exhausted and that happens on and off now, but i truly believe it is to do with eating properly and not just a surgical problem. I will check out the sleep apnea issue as it seems to be affected by the GERD - im still not completely convinced its an issue on its own since I did sleep reasonably ok up till a couple of years ago?

In other news, I was diagnosed with a Thyroid Cancer, thankfully it was curable and the mildest form and caught early and I was treated 2 weeks ago successfully for it. Your prayers helped. Only time will tell about my symptoms so i will keep you informed as to how the thyroid is linked at all to the GERD or whether my fatigue is completely GERD, or a combination of both!

Still having some trouble swallowing and getting some dizziness on and off whilst my body gets used to the new meds. My legs are also a lot heavier and arms in the morning and then it slowly gets better, i dont feel like going for a run after work ,put it that way!

The GERD continues however in its milder form but I am slowly getting a tack on it.

I would suggest to anyone that they strongly look at their diet and just stop for a couple of hours and go through what it is you should be eating daily and do some planning. This is incredibly hard, i know, and takes motivation because you just want to eat what everyone else is eating.

Yours

PH Fan
Regular Member


Date Joined Dec 2009
Total Posts : 88
   Posted 5/10/2011 12:47 PM (GMT -6)   
I just found out through routine bloodwork that my iron level is a little low,i've been on prevacid for about 4 years and been tired alot lately,could it be gerd or the meds?

Mjolkbud
New Member


Date Joined Jun 2011
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 6/3/2011 5:22 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Dave, I am wondering how you have been getting on with your GERD?

Your story sounds so much like mine. I am a 36 year old female. I fell ill with Labyrinthitis which I was told most likely was caused by an upper viral infection. It all happened while I was going through some IUI treatment with a very low dose of hormones.

I then started to have some problems with my stomach; bloatedness, discomfort around my lower stomach area, a heaviness which I'd never experienced before, constipation and I woke up with strange hunger feelings at night a couple of times. Felt like my stomach was being sucked in.

Then about 6 months ago I started to get these throat pains in the mornings and at night, if I bend over slightly or moved about. I am normally quite an active and healthy person so I find it hard to understand how I could have gotten something like GERD.

I too feel extremely tired and irritated when I'm not taking the acid suppressing medicine and my symptoms are the same as yours: stomach ache which I feel the need to rub a little bit to soothe the area and I too find that it helps a little. I agree that it feels instinctive.
I usually wake up once a night with pain in the middle of my stomach, after going with it for a long time it sort of aches to my back as well.

I was diagnosed with h pylori and got treated for it but my GERD still persist. I was told by my GP that it's most likely due to too much acid which in turn is causing irritation around the muscles and stomach. I too am trying to find the cause as I never used to have it like this before.

I do believe that my physical tiredness comes from the inflammation of the muscles and due to lack of sleep. It feels a bit like having come down with the flu and I know exactly what you mean. It's like night and day for me when I'm on the acid suppressants and when I'm not. I feel like two different people but it is due to the condition.

It would be great to hear from you and to see how you have been getting on!

All the best

Mjolkbud
New Member


Date Joined Jun 2011
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 6/3/2011 5:26 PM (GMT -6)   
I forgot to say that I too get the same sensation in my upper mid part of my belly - tingling butterfly feeling and a rushing feeling.

I was told by my GP that it's the acid... The feeling if anything can make you anxious but I don't feel anxious before it happens.

I have a feeling that it must be something mechanical causing it, I don't believe that it's psychosomatic.

stkitt
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 32602
   Posted 6/4/2011 8:16 AM (GMT -6)   
 
I was sorry to read of your thyroid cancer but thrilled to know it is treatable. I suspect you have more then one thing causing your sx and waking up at night will make you feel tired during the day.
 
Sending you healing prayers and do keep on talking with us.

~~Kitt~~
Moderator: Anxiety/Panic, Osteoarthritis, GERD/Heartburn and Heart/Cardiovascular Disease.
www.healingwell.com

"If you can't change the world, change your world"

haidar
New Member


Date Joined Jan 2011
Total Posts : 12
   Posted 7/8/2011 9:47 AM (GMT -6)   
Hey Salmanc..i have also silent relfux with lack of energy like u have..i use to weight train like an ox but now i am verry tired after meals yawning bloating etc...also i canot eat protein because this meals are the worst...maybe i have acidic body like u said..
what is you re diet??
u took protonix ??
what suplements u take?
Tks man!

PH Fan
Regular Member


Date Joined Dec 2009
Total Posts : 88
   Posted 7/8/2011 10:24 AM (GMT -6)   
I've been on Prevacid about 4 years and didn't notice any tiredness or lack of energy until about a year ago,then I started feeling tired and lack of energy,so about 2 months ago I went to the doctor and had some bloodwork done,everything was normal except my iron level,it was low,so they did some test to see if I was losing any blood,that came back negative,I ask them if it could be from prolonged use of ppi's and they said NO,I then realized that about a year ago I changed vitamin suppliments,it was the kind that would give you more energy,that didn't help,then I looked at the label and there is no iron in it,so about a month ago I changed vitamins that has 18mg of iron,plus I took just an iron supplement with 65mg for about a week,boy what a difference,I feel alot better,I quit taking the 65mgs because too much iron can constipate you,I hope this helps.

mudmagnetmum
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2011
Total Posts : 1532
   Posted 7/8/2011 11:03 AM (GMT -6)   
I'm iron deficient too. I wondered which contributed the most - the antacid medication (which could potentially reduce iron absorption by not helping free iron from food) or gastritis which can cause blood loss as well as interfere with the function of the stomach (I presume). I was anaemic a year ago but came back to normal haemoglobin whilst taking Omeprazole. Since stopping ppis (cos I had problems with side effects) I have become anaemic again. My guess is that the gastritis/GERD is causing me blood loss and/or poor absorption. I think people taking ppis should have an annual blood test for anaemia because:

a) GERD or gastritis can cause blood loss and anaemia would be a sign things are not controlled
b) PPIs may hinder iron absorption long term

Lack of stomach acid will affect iron availability of iron in plant foods, but "haem iron" (that is in meat) should still be absorbed normally via the small intestine. It's possible that less is absorbed than in someone not taking ppis, simply because we don't have the stomach acid to "pre-digest" the meat before it reaches the small intestine where most absorption of nutrients takes place.

Anyone who is anaemic or has low iron but has very well controlled GERD should be investigated for blood loss from elsewhere in the GI tract.

PHFan - the test you had for checking for blood loss - was that "faecal occult bloods"? That used to be the standard test here in the UK but for some mad reason the test has been withdrawn. Apparently if they suspect blood loss from the GI tract now, instead of doing a simple non invasive test, they send you for a colonoscopy (and a gastroscopy if you have upper GI symptoms!!). Seems a bit OTT as a first step!!
New stuff: GERD. Interstitial Cystitis
Lifelong stuff: Food allergies, eczema, asthma

PH Fan
Regular Member


Date Joined Dec 2009
Total Posts : 88
   Posted 7/8/2011 12:25 PM (GMT -6)   
Yes,it was the fectal occult, i have to have colonoscopys every so often because of colon cancer in the family,the last one i had was 2 years ago,all clear,don't have too again for 5 yrs.

jasmine8
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2011
Total Posts : 69
   Posted 7/8/2011 1:32 PM (GMT -6)   
just another opinion here. I'm always exhausted, and I think it's because my body always has to repair, repair, repair from the acid damage. That's my thought
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