Wow! It has been a long time since I lasted visited this forum. I have been through quite a bit, and I have gone full circle you might say.
I was off any sort of PPI medication for 10 months. Ten very long months. It seemed that my days were spent stressing over my digestive issues.
I knew that I could not go back on Nexium. One morning I was in the medicine cabinet fishing for a pepcid when I came across a prescription bottle with 30 little pills called Pariet. My wife was having heartburn issues a year earlier as a result of her osteoporosis medication, and her doctor prescribed them to her. She never took them. I did.
Almost one year later, and I am still on them! They work for me. Over the course of this past year, I have had to double up maybe twice, and I have added a pepcid to the mix maybe a dozen times. The tiniest pill you have ever seen, and it has given me back my happy life. I believe that in the US this pill is marketed as Aciphex, but I could be wrong.
During my ten long months off of PPI's I discovered that I indeed suffered from Gerd. Plain old reflux. I learned to sleep on my left side, which helped a lot, but if I ever spent any time on my back I could actually feel the liquid rolling up my esophegus. I started to develop that post throat mucous drip. I was at a tipping point. I was miserable pretty much all the time.
The pariet has really helped. The only side effect that I have is that I am getting cramping in my calf muscles again. Not as bad as when I experimented with Prilosec, but still constantly a threat. I have been diagnosed as having "restless leg syndrome". That in itself is not a big deal, but the constantl leg moving and stretching during sleep is not helping the cramping. I have tried potassium and magnesium and calcium and tonic water, but nothing helps. It is worse whenever I consume alcohol, that much is perfectly clear. I am tempted to try a 2 month holiday from ppi's again just to see if they are actual responsible for my cramping.
Of greatest importance, at least in my case, is that I am not hurting my esophegus daily anymore, and my mental health is fantastic. This has been a great year for me. I really hope that by returning to PPI medication I am not doing myself any long term harm, as that was my motivation for stopping in the first place.
I have not taken a gaviscon or used any other supplements (besides those few pepcid) for an entire year.
Just as an aside, not long after I started on Pariet, I found myself spending a weekend 6 hours away from home. I had forgotten to bring the Pariet! My brother in law offered me a couple of his Nexium until I could get back home. I tried the Nexium and wouldn't you know I got a pain in my belly within an hour of taking it. The exact pain I had before I decided to quit it. So I know for ceratin that my experiences with these PPI's are pretty much drug specific.
Best of health to all!