Introduction and question about smoke

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New Member

Date Joined Mar 2010
Total Posts : 5
   Posted 3/20/2010 10:47 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi, what a great forum!! I am 46 yo woman from montana and have sort of an odd question. Have had GERD for about 9 years, was really "good" with the recommendations for about 2 years and felt okay, then slid off the wagon back to my old ways (drank carbinated drinks, etc) and voila! GERD back with avengence!!! very painful, scary heart palpitations on prilosec, waiting to hear back from doc about prevasid/other meds, in the meantime making all possible lifestyle adjustments (again!!), but here is my question...
my husband (Native) runs a sweat lodge. I carry (and smoke) a pipe. I smoke about 2-3x a month, and sit in the lodge (small, enclosed, LOTS of smoke)...could this be making things worse?
It is a religious ceremony and would be very hard to give up but was wondering, as my heartburn is much worse than last time and I am back on the wagon so to speak-no carbination, very bland diet, elevated head for sleeping, no food at night, exercise only on empty stomach, etc)
Nice to know there is such support, as no one I know up here has it or knows anything about it, other than "its just heartburn". My mom has Barretts so my family is pretty tuned in to diet, and all that, but very comforting to know there are others out there who know just how bad this can be!

Elite Member

Date Joined Jul 2009
Total Posts : 14475
   Posted 3/20/2010 10:56 AM (GMT -6)   
Welcome, Lila.
Smoke will relax the LES, which can cause more reflux. What kind of PPIs are you on? Maybe you can increase or change it to help you? Do you see a GI?


Elite Member

Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 32602
   Posted 3/20/2010 11:00 AM (GMT -6)   
Hello Lila,

Smoking can cause or aggravate many health problems, and gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) is one of them. If you already have GERD, smoking can make your symptoms worse.

Do you have a medical physician or GI Physician that you could discuss the smoking of the pipe risks with this professional?

Wish I had some really great words of wisdom for you.

Stick with us and perhaps another member will have info for you.

A warm welcome to you,


New Member

Date Joined Mar 2010
Total Posts : 5
   Posted 3/20/2010 11:20 AM (GMT -6)   
thank you so much and for all your support. It is SO helpful reading other people's experiences and thinking "oh boy do I relate to THAT!" I have an appointment with a GI guy up here APril 8 so will for sure talk with him about it, but of course am anxious (!!). THis will likely have some pretty significant reprocussions on my marriage, not insurmountable but significant.

Not likely a problem most people encounter!!

And thanks for the info about the LES, sort of suspected that but didn't really know.

Not on any PPI at the moment. Had been on prilosec back when it was prescription and then OTC (2000-2001 and 2004) and did get some relief, but also got heart palpitations..quit and seemed fine. So, when the sx started back up again, I thought I'd try to the prilosec OTC and see how it went. but wow! My heart felt like it was coming out of my chest! Stopped as soon as I stopped the Prilsosec. h

Have an appt with GI guy but called to see if Prevasid would be different/helpful. Have not heard back yet. Other than the heart stuff, felt very good even for the few days on Prilosec,had not realized how much pain I was in until I had a few days clear. Mom had horrid body rash on nexium at first but now (barretts) seems to be doing really well on it (of course she has been really really good about making lifestyle changes!!).

So, I am back to doing whatever I can do, which is why I am taking a look at the medicine pipe. Don't smoke otherwise but still, just suspected that smoking the pipe might not be helpful, and the lodge is very very smokey. the LES stuff makes sense.

Thanks for the feedback, hope others are getting spring!!
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