I'm miserable! Is this acid reflux?

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NeedingAnswers
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2010
Total Posts : 93
   Posted 4/8/2010 12:06 PM (GMT -6)   
Hey, everyone.  I'm new to this forum and am hoping someone here can offer some insight as to what may be causing my symptoms.
 
I'm a 26 year old female who up until 8 months ago had never had a major health issue.  Starting in August of last year, I began to experience some stomach issues.  Nothing that bothersome just some upper abdominal tenderness (breastbone to navel), burping, and some slight bloating issues.  In to October I started feeling some slight nauseousness after eating along with the other symptoms.  It was in October I had my first, what I guess was, a gallbladder attack.  After having 3 of these I had an ultrasound which revealed a gallstone so I had my gallbladder removed in December.  Thought that would solve all of my problems...WRONG!
 
Now, I'm feeling worse than ever and my doctor thinks it may be due to acid reflux and a possible hiatal hernia.  Haven't had any test done to confirm or deny this.  Took Prilosce for 2 week and then Nexium for a month but stopped those back in mid March.  On to my current symptoms which include: upper abdominal tenderness (breastbone to navel), burping, hiccups, chest discomfort, and back aches.  Even had an episode of shoulder pain after drinking a glass of room temperature water quickly.  I mention the room temperature part because a couple time I think hot or cold food/drink have brought on pain.  Ate an ice cream bar and had chest discomfort for probably an hour.  Drank just one alcoholic beverage and had what felt like a severe cramp in my back.  Sometimes my back will start aching after eating.  Had some soup while it was still not and not only my back, but the back of my neck, started aching. Sometimes these episodes occur at random times.  The chest discomfort is enough to where it is all I can think about while it's happening.  Have had heartburn a couple times as well.  Even my throat is irritated which my doctor thinks may be reflux.  I went to my primary care doc a few days ago because I was starting to think something serious is going on.  He gave me a prescription for Prevacid.
 
I have an appointment with a gastroenterologist coming up next Tuesday but am wondering in the meantime if you all think this is really acid reflux?  This is giving me a lot of anxiety because I don't know what's going on or when/if I'm going to end up being in pain/discomfort.  This is all I can think about 24/7 which is probably not helping matters.  After 8 months of issues I'm wondering if I will ever get back to feeling good again.  My doctor actually prescribed Hydroxyzine which he said would help with the anxiety and sleep troubles. 
 
Any advice or insight would be greatly appreciated.  Thanks for taking time to read this.

couchtater
Elite Member


Date Joined Jul 2009
Total Posts : 14475
   Posted 4/8/2010 1:34 PM (GMT -6)   
It sounds like you have some of the symptoms others have experienced.

I had silent GERD. My main symptom was a horrible cough all of the time. Sometimes I'd burn or hurt, but it was rare.

I've been told by others here that Gerd can affect you in many different ways that seem very unrelated.

When you see the GI he/she will run several tests to determine how bad is your GERD.
Most can be handled with PPIs or H2 blockers. Some people have to have the surgery (that's me).

Stick around here and ask any questions you have. We're not doctors, but we've seen many.

Joy

NeedingAnswers
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2010
Total Posts : 93
   Posted 4/8/2010 2:57 PM (GMT -6)   
Thanks for responding!
 
After battling different symptoms for 8 months now it makes me worry that something serious is going on.  My symptoms seem so random to me that I'm just looking for reassurance that they could be attributed to acid reflux.  It makes me feel better knowing that my symptoms are similar to what other people have been through.
 
Prior to all of this I'd never had a major health issue.  In fact, the only time I'd even had blood drawn was before my gallbladder surgery, seriously.  That was stressful and now still dealing with issues makes me wonder if I'll ever get back to feeling good again.  The discomfort that I'm feeling only a daily basis makes it hard for me to not obsess over it.

couchtater
Elite Member


Date Joined Jul 2009
Total Posts : 14475
   Posted 4/8/2010 5:13 PM (GMT -6)   
I know the fears. I had never been in a hospital for surgery before my GERD surgery.
I've been in labs and the ER twice (allergic reactions). I was terrified of everything, before the surgery. My mind was full of "what ifs". But the day of the surgery I had this strange peace flow over me and I wasn't scared anymore. I actually joked with the nurses so much they thought I was on something.
Afterwards, I felt so relieved from not coughing so much.

Best of the world.

Joy

LittlePeanut
Regular Member


Date Joined Oct 2008
Total Posts : 81
   Posted 4/9/2010 12:21 PM (GMT -6)   
It sound like you have alot of stress to go along with your acid reflux. Make an appointment with your gastrologist and try to have ready not only a time table per say of time of the day where symptoms are wors but food also. This will help greatly. He might suggest some tests like an endoscopy to see what is happening inside. These are not big deal so no worries. I know how you feel one day your feeling fine then all of a sudden you start to feel like the wheels fell off.

Modify your diet if you have not already done so get rid of the fried foods chocolates salsa and
spiced foods. Eat smaller meals and nothing late at night give your stomach time to digest what its got before dumping in more. Avoid alchohol and anything with caffiene. You dont need these anyways and your body will thank you for it.

Keep talking us you have come to the right place


LP

NeedingAnswers
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2010
Total Posts : 93
   Posted 4/9/2010 7:08 PM (GMT -6)   
The stress is because I've already had surgery, which was a huge deal to me, and still don't feel better.  Thank goodness my appointment with a gastroenterologist is only a few days away.  Even though I'm scared about having test done, especially an upper endoscopy, I really need to know what is going on.  Another part that is frustrating to me is that I've already altered my diet and haven't noticed any improvement.  I eat a low fat diet with no fried foods, caffeine, chocolate, carbonated beverages, occasionally I'll have tomatoes or onions but very rarely.  Pretty much all I drink is water and I try to eat small meals.  What's completely baffling is that all my stomach troubles started back in August which was about 2 months after I drastically altered my diet.  Quit eating fast food which I was consuming in excess of 5 times per week.  Instead started eating more fruits, vegetables, baked chicken, and whole grains.  I've lost 53 pounds down from 214 to 161.  Still not where I want to be but I'm getting there.
 
Thank you all for taking time to respond.  I'm sure I'll be posting more and trying to learn from you all how you deal with acid reflux issues.  Hope you have a good day!

couchtater
Elite Member


Date Joined Jul 2009
Total Posts : 14475
   Posted 4/9/2010 8:36 PM (GMT -6)   
The EGD is nothing as long as you're sedated. I've been through it three times. Two times in one day because I fought the doctor, I didn't know it, but I did. You go to sleep and wake up about 30-40 minutes later. I had a little bit of an irritated throat, but it went away after an hour and a milkshake. ;)

Joy

NeedingAnswers
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2010
Total Posts : 93
   Posted 4/9/2010 8:53 PM (GMT -6)   
My primary care doctor said that he thinks I need an upper endoscopy so I'm sure the gastro doc will want to do one.  For some reason that makes me more nervous than the gallbladder surgery did.  I guess it's because I felt more confident that I would be completely unaware of what was going on for that one.  I gag so easily and the thought of having something down my throat freaks me out.  If I do have to have it done, I'll be asking you all to post in detail your experiences so I can prepare myself.  Haha!

couchtater
Elite Member


Date Joined Jul 2009
Total Posts : 14475
   Posted 4/10/2010 9:35 AM (GMT -6)   
1. You go in the prep room
2. You put on a gown
3. You lay down on a bed and cover up
4. Nurse comes in asks a dozen questions
5. The nurse puts in the IV and leaves
6. They come in the room and take you to the procedure room
7. They give you a shot
8. As you go, you feel a small prop go in your mouth
9. Night-night
10. Wake up groggy back in the prep room and told to get dressed

Very easy...

Joy

gerdo
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2008
Total Posts : 37
   Posted 4/12/2010 10:50 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi NeedingAnswers,
firstly, please stop worrying - it only makes things worse. As horrible as it feels to go through this, most people come out just fine from GERD. I was very fortunate in that I met dozens of indiduals who recovered from GERD naturally and they all shared their stories with me, giving me renewed hope in my own recovery. Your body is designed to heal, but it is also designed to tell you when something is wrong. So relax - your body knows what it is doing.

I see this question a lot on the forum and have answered quite a few times. I don't want to flood the forum with the same information so if you would like, please see my post from earlier today at 9:43. The thread should be towards the top. Or you can just click my name and check for posts around 9:40 today. When I hear nausea, I think pylorus shut down. This is a very common cause for GERD and pretty easy to resolve. Consider discussing with your doctor if it sounds like what you have.

Good luck and I hope you have a speedy recovery!!!! Remember to relax with breathing exercises (inhale slowly count to 4, hold 4 seconds, exhale slowly count of 4, hold 4 seconds, repeat for a few minutes). Play soft music in the background and focus on good things. Stay away from the internet horror stories. If you have a pet spend time with it. The key is - stay calm and think positive thoughts!
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