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Chipsygrl
Regular Member


Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 29
   Posted 3/10/2010 12:30 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi everyone,

I have GERD and have had a few tests already which has confirmed it. I recently had blood work as my GI doc also thinks I might have Crohn's - my brother has this (common for siblings to have it) but we are not in contact. I have an endoscopy on April 12th and am not so worried about the procedure thanks to people on this site..TY! My doc has also suggested I have the Nissen fundo wrap done as I am no longer responding to medication. My symptoms are severe and I have lost a lot of weight as I have a fear of eating anything. I find almost everything effects the reflux. I mostly feel it in my back between my shoulder blades and under my sternum. He will be looking for a hernia. Could someone tell me ways to know if you have a hernia (hiatal SP?) If I rest my hands on my stomach near my sternum it hurts - a lot of pressure.
I live in Canada and it has taken me a year to get in to see a GI specialist as there are a shortage of them here and since the disease is so common. I am wondering if there is anyone in Canada on here, how long did it take for you to get a date for surgery? I don't know how long I can take the pain anymore. I am a university student and it is directly effecting my studies a great deal. I live in Hamilton, ON.

I hope someone can get back to me regarding these two questions. I have made drastic lifestyle changes and have lifted the head of my bed, don't need to lose weight, am active...etc..etc...

I am so glad this forum exists
smilewinkgrin

dencha
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 7185
   Posted 3/10/2010 7:27 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi Chipsygirl,
I'm glad you found our forum! I was also very grateful to find it, as there are lots of very negative posts on the internet, and a lot of forums are not at all active. There are some great people here, who will support you through this process. I live in the states, so can't help you regarding Canadian surgeons, but hopefully there's a member who will stop by soon to share information and encouragement.

You're right in not worrying about the endoscopy. You'll do just fine. Actually the less sedation you have, the better your throat will feel afterward, since you can help swallow the tube. I had my first one with minor sedation, and the second one with no sedation. It only lasts about five minutes at most, so it's not a long time that you have to tough it out.

Anyway, I've got to get ready for work. Good luck to you, and again, Welcome to the GERD/Heartburn forum!
Denise turn

Good Days
Regular Member


Date Joined Oct 2008
Total Posts : 146
   Posted 3/10/2010 8:43 AM (GMT -6)   

Chipsygrl,

Glad you found the forum.  Hopefully you will have lots of feedback.

The scope is a breeze.  But until Denise, I tell the Dr. that I don't want to know anything.  No problems so far and I have had a few.

Do all the research on surgeons you can and make sure he has sucessfully done 100's of them.

Hope you find some relief soon.

 

Jayne


stkitt
Elite Member


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 32602
   Posted 3/10/2010 11:52 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi Chipsygirl,


Welcome! Mike C is from Canada as well as others on here. I hope he reads your post.



Good advice already given and I hope you only have the GERD and not Crohn's disease. My hubby has Crohn's.

We also have a forum here just for Crohn's Disease so you may want to read through some of the threads in that forum and even post any questions or concerns.



Take care and again welcome,



Kitt






MinnesotaMark
Regular Member


Date Joined Dec 2009
Total Posts : 53
   Posted 3/10/2010 4:21 PM (GMT -6)   
Hey Chipsygrl----I use to live in Burlington, now live in Minnesota. Anyone who thinks that the Canadian health care system might be better hasn't lived in Canada with an illness!! :( The waits are ridiculous. It sounds like you are already on meds? Does this include PPI's? If not--head to Buffalo and pick some up (Prevacid, Prilosec) at the local Walmart. Sometimes trying a different PPI variation works. You mentioned you are active--make sure you exercise on an empty stomach and stick to non-impact activities like eliptical versus treadmill. Good Luck MM

my7pinecones
Regular Member


Date Joined Feb 2010
Total Posts : 74
   Posted 3/10/2010 5:54 PM (GMT -6)   
Welcome Chipsygrl! Glad you are here with us.

I have had many esophageal tests some many times, such as the endoscopy you mention. The best test to see the hernia (HH) is with the scope. I have had several HH repaired during esophageal surgeries and the most significant of all the tests that could clearly show it was the scope.

I have had some relief from a relatively new medicine which I am taking prior to surgery is Kapidex 60 mg. It also comes in 30 mg.

I hope you find relief soon! Good luck with your studies:-)

Mike C
Regular Member


Date Joined Mar 2010
Total Posts : 45
   Posted 3/10/2010 6:15 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Chipsygrl, thats an usually long time to wait to see a GI... the most probable reason is that you live in a small city.Meanwhile you have to stop eating anything with acid in it ..all juices and coffees.Try not to worry too much about your Gerd..usually we all go through that"first shock"after the first diagnose.I am surprised your doc wants you to do the Fundo wrap so soon... after just confirming your Gerd. The thing is if you get Chrohns you might end up getting prescribed prednisone which is a steroid,that alone will badly irritate your Gerd... so I wish you luck with that... Let us know how that test turns out.

couchtater
Elite Member


Date Joined Jul 2009
Total Posts : 14475
   Posted 3/10/2010 7:46 PM (GMT -6)   
Welcome!
I've had three endos.
The first one, I knew nothing during, and woke up fairly quick afterwards.
The second one, I knew nothing during, and slept 3 hours afterwards, but I fought the doctor during it. :)
The third one, which followed the second one three hours later, I knew nothing during, and woke up quick.

Joy

Chipsygrl
Regular Member


Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 29
   Posted 3/10/2010 9:20 PM (GMT -6)   
Thank-you everyone for your replies. I have been diagnosed with GERD for around 2 years so the actual diagnosis isn't new. I was diagnosed simply with medical trials. I was on a lot of Rinitidine for several years which worked great until one day it stopped working. I had intense pain in my back between shoulder blades and difficulty swallowing, back flow of liquids and hoarse throat, pain in my ear and sinus. I also started to have a choking sensation as if my neckline on my tops were too tight and at times would vomit from the back flow. I had to sleep sitting up for a long time.
My doctor ordered blood work for H.plori (came back neg) and other stuff and an ultrasound to see if it was my gallbladder and other possibilities. I was diagnosed with GERDS because when she prescribed omeprazole 60 mg/day it improved. This did not work for very long and slowly the symptoms returned. I am still taking them however I have the pain in my back and feeling as if my neckline is too tight and difficulty swallowing when I eat, cough only at night time and I have lost A LOT of weight. I was first given an appointment with a GI a year ago with not too long of a weight but cancelled it because the symptoms disappeared to return a week later. I remember it being a long wait then as well.
I have waited a year to see the one I am seeing now knowing I could get in sooner to see another one but my GP recommended the one I have now as she said he is very thorough and has a great bedside manner. I have the endoscopy on April 12th and an MRI on June 8th and my follow-up appointment is on May 2? of 2011!! I will have an opportunity to speak with the GI after my endoscopy as he said he will know the results right away except for biopsies. He told me without any tests that I have GERD as I have been diagnosed with an ulcer previously. I believe the MRI (for the small bowel) is to check for Crohn's.
I told him that at times I take 3 omeprazole a day when I cant take it anymore hoping it will help and I was told not to as I was on a high dose. He then brought up the Nissen fundo wrap because I am not responding to medicine anymore and that I am a good candidate for it since I am active, young and eat a fairly healthy diet. I dont drink juices or eat red meat or citrus, mint, onions, garlic...at this point I find everything effects the GERD. I dont care what they do so long as they fix it! I am afraid to eat and cant fall asleep until about 4 or 5 a.m. I am a university student so not eating and sleeping makes for long days and enormous difficulty writing papers.
I have researched the fundo wrap and have read mostly horrible experiences but I think maybe that is to be expected as people need somewhere to vent. The stories about positive outcomes makes me very hopeful that there may be relief in sight.

Thank-you again for all your support, suggestions and encouragement. Much appreciated!

couchtater
Elite Member


Date Joined Jul 2009
Total Posts : 14475
   Posted 3/11/2010 10:28 PM (GMT -6)   
Good luck in getting in to see him soon. Maybe you can get on the list to be called if someone cancels?

Joy

MinnesotaMark
Regular Member


Date Joined Dec 2009
Total Posts : 53
   Posted 3/11/2010 11:00 PM (GMT -6)   
Hey Chipsygrl---you are right about the lap fundo stories. Statistically over 94% success rate (over all variations) and you are right--we tend to her more from the ones that don't go so well. Keep that in mind.
Sounds like you are going in with eyes wide open though--you do need to be aware of the risks and of course the recovery can be 'un-comfy' for some. Way I look at it, even if I had to deal with a miserable recovery for a few weeks (or even months), it seems a reasonable price to pay for 10-15+ years of relief. Only a moment in time-things always get better. In my case, I know my hernia is causing issues. MM

Chipsygrl
Regular Member


Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 29
   Posted 3/12/2010 1:02 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi Couchtator, ya, that is exactly what happened. My appointment wait with him was shortened by a month b/c someone cancelled. While the nurse was scheduling the endoscopy he jokingly said I'll probably get an appointment in 2014. When the nurse told me April, he said there must have been a cancellation as he has been scheduling appointments for November - so I am fortunate that way. The MRI is June so hopefully the same thing happens.
Minnesota Mark, yeah, I have found the replies to be extremes as well. Either people are saying it is the best thing they have ever done to read this post it could save your life: not to do it. I joined this forum b/c there is more of a continuum. I am looking at it the same way you are. People think Im strange wanting to have it done but the meds aren't working anymore and I can't live like this. Thats why I say Im not worried about the actual surgery but the 6 weeks - but it's uncomfortable now swallowing and eating. Im concerned about my weight as I cant afford to lose anymore but Im still losing as afraid to eat. It's the waiting that is bothering me and at times tempted to call and tell them I cant wait much longer - it's very uncomfortable especially at night.
Thank-you for the replies =)

couchtater
Elite Member


Date Joined Jul 2009
Total Posts : 14475
   Posted 3/12/2010 4:52 PM (GMT -6)   
My swallowing was no trouble as long as I followed the diet. Liquids for at least three weeks. Gradually add more pureed foods. Then soft foods and lastly the solids. I listened close to my body and ate very carefully and slowly to avoid swallowing too big of bite or air.

It worked great. I only overate three times and paid for it big time (ouch).

Joy

Chipsygrl
Regular Member


Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 29
   Posted 3/12/2010 11:44 PM (GMT -6)   
okay, good to know. I am so glad it worked for you! Great to hear positive stories :)
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