I am wondering if you have had any testing done as you say the docs just listen to you and toss out meds.
If your symptoms are particularly severe or don't respond to treatment, you may need to undergo other tests to check for GERD and other conditions.
Endoscopy. A more direct test for diagnosing the cause of heartburn is esophagogastroduodenoscopy (EGD). In this test your doctor inserts a thin, flexible tube equipped with a light and camera (endoscope) down your throat. The endoscope allows your doctor to see if you have an ulcerated or inflamed esophagus (esophagitis) or stomach (gastritis). It can also reveal a peptic ulcer. During an EGD, your doctor can take tissue samples to test for Barrett's esophagus — a condition in which precancerous changes occur in cells in your esophagus — or esophageal cancer, two potential complications of severe heartburn. Your doctor also may take biopsies of the stomach that may reveal the presence of a bacterium that may cause peptic ulcers. Some of the reasons you may need an endoscopy are if medications aren't working for you, you have had GERD symptoms for a long time, you experience difficulty swallowing, weight loss, regurgitation of blood or black material, or your doctor is not sure whether you have GERD. Although endoscopy results often appear normal despite GERD, sometimes endoscopy can reveal inflammation, stricture, Barrett's esophagus or cancer.
Ambulatory acid (pH) probe tests. These tests use an acid-measuring (pH) probe to identify when, and for how long, stomach acid regurgitates into your esophagus. This information can help your doctor determine how best to treat your condition. In the standard tube test, a nurse or technician sprays your throat with a numbing medication while you're seated. Then a thin, flexible tube (catheter) is threaded through your nose into your esophagus to insert the probe. The probe is positioned just above the lower esophageal sphincter. A second probe may be placed in your upper esophagus. Attached to the other end of the catheter is a small computer that you wear around your waist or with a strap over your shoulder during the test. It records acid measurements. After the probe is in place, you go about your business and then come back one or two days later to have the device removed. Another ambulatory test called a Bravo pH probe may be more comfortable than the standard test, because it eliminates the need for a tube in your nose. In the Bravo test, the probe is attached to the lower portion of your esophagus during endoscopy. The probe transmits a signal to a small computer that you wear around your waist for about two days, and then the probe falls off to be passed in your stool. Another benefit of the Bravo test is that you can shower and sleep more comfortably than with the standard test. Generally, if you have symptoms of GERD your doctor will likely first treat you with medication. If the medication doesn't work or you have side effects and can't tolerate it, your doctor may order an ambulatory acid (pH) probe test.
Esophageal impedance. Rather than measuring acid, this test can measure whether gas or liquids reflux back into your esophagus. It's helpful for people who have regurgitation or reflux of materials in the esophagus that aren't acidic and wouldn't be detected by a pH probe. The test works by placing a catheter through your nose and into your esophagus, similar to a standard pH probe tube test. However, because the test is new, its role in helping people with GERD hasn't been clearly defined.
I know our members that have gone through surgery have had testing done before surgery is considered.
I hope you find a good GI physician that will start to take your symptoms seriously and do some testing.
Take care and please do read the threads by dencha as the informations shared in the threads is awesome and I am sure you will find it helpful. Great dialog between the members in those threads.
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