Anyone else out there with painfullest pain ever? Esophageal spasm???

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Rugeli
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Date Joined May 2010
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 5/30/2010 11:14 PM (GMT -6)   
Soooo, im brand spanking new to this forum and only found it by googling some info i got today from my Doc. She thinks i have been suffereing from Esophageal spasms? I just wondered if anyone has had this happen? Its just that i have had two babies without drugs and id seriously do that again rather than deal with the chest/back pain i have been experiencing sporadically these last few years..... Can these spasms possibly cause this much pain? I honestly thought at the time that i was having a heart attack - only it went on for hours and i wasnt dead yet - seriously last ngiht it was so bad that i was almost hoping i would die!!! :) So i guess im just wondering if anyone else has experienced this unbearable pain and also my doc gave me some 'Pariet' to take (20mgs a day) to see if it prevents it and also some Maxalon to help with the pain if it returns. She seems to think the Pariet will clear it right up.  ? 
 
The only tests i have had are lung and heart x-ray last year (showed small amount of something in my lungs from having severe asthma as a child...) I dont have asthma anymore.
 
The pain is like an absolute tightenning or cramping feeling of my inner chest and back (around where my bra straps sit) and it radieates up my back and into my neck and both sides of my jaw - the pain makes me want to vomit and drains all my energy and then after the pain subsides i shiver and teeth chatter from the exhaustion. It lasts about an hour and nothing aleviates the pain..... It comes out of nowhere and scares the bejeebers out of me.
 
(im 30 yrs old) relatively healthy and eat mostly healthy foods.  I also have PCOS but pretty sure they could not be related.
 
Any one else got any similar symptoms or pain?
Thanks for reading :)

honorablemention
Regular Member


Date Joined Sep 2008
Total Posts : 26
   Posted 5/30/2010 11:43 PM (GMT -6)   
yeah

i know exactly what you are going through. i've been having spasms for 4 years, and nothing has been able to stop them. the first time i ever had them, i thought i was dying...i was actually getting dressed to go to the ER. i thought the pain was just heartburn for about a year and a half or two til I broke out in hives one weekend during a hurricane and had the worst chest and back pain ever.

the pain is soooooo severe. i think i have a high tolerance for pain and i have seriously considered suicide when the pain has gotten so bad. i've been on about 7 different ppi's...i've taken acid reducers...i've had a manometry, one scope, two barium xrays, one abdominal ultrasound, a hida scan...i was placed on Hyoscyamine (symax AND levsin)...i've stopped drinking and eating most acidic and spicy foods...yet, i still have these pains...

i have that same pain in the front and the back and in my jaws...

1 ER visit, 2 family practitioners, 1 physician's assistant, 1 general surgeon, 1 gastroenterologist...and 4 years and nothing has come of it.. the gastroenterologist i was seeing said there was nothing more he could do b/c he didnt believe it was gastro related at that point...that was almost a year ago...he also refused to put me on meds that he believed would work b/c i felt that i was too young and they might make my blood pressure too low...

i dont know what to tell you...i was on pariet or aciphex and i still had pain

i hope you find something that works b/c i know how much it has to be affecting your quality of life...

Rugeli
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Date Joined May 2010
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 5/30/2010 11:56 PM (GMT -6)   
Oh :( Honorable mention. Thanks for the reply - Im so sorry that you have had no luck tackling this pain. How old are you? Or were you when this started? Was/is your pain just constant now? or how often does it occurr for you?
Mine seems to come and go and i dont know if time of year has much to do wiht it, but it always seems to worsen when the cooler weather hits (im in Australia) Im just keeping my fingers crossed that this first attempt at pain reduction (Pariet) will magically work...but it seems highly unlikely as from what im reading on this forum theres not much relief out there at all :(

Hope today is spasm free,
for you and me :) LOL

honorablemention
Regular Member


Date Joined Sep 2008
Total Posts : 26
   Posted 5/31/2010 12:10 AM (GMT -6)   
im 28 now, so i was 24 when it first started.

It pain is sporadic. I've gone months without a real attack, and then I might go 3 months with having them all day every day. I always feel a bit achy though, and my swallowing is also very affected, so I can feel less painful spasms every time i eat or drink.

I've been having spasms almost daily now for about 13 weeks...

do you have any other symptoms...like GERD, difficulty swallowing, dry mouth?

Rugeli
New Member


Date Joined May 2010
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 5/31/2010 12:23 AM (GMT -6)   
well, ever since my first pregnancy i have had little bits of acid reflux here and there - nothing major and i usually just have a glass of milk and it goes away. I also noticed about a month ago that when i ate it felt like there was a huge ball in my throat and it hurt like hell for a minute or two - i made a concious effort to chew my food really well but sometimes that wouldnt even work....im only just thinkng about all this now?...do you think its all related? Theat feeling of a huge ball going down my throat hasnt returned for about 3 weeks now - i just thought it was a once off thing, but it makes sence that along with the reflux and pain it could all be part of one and the same issue...whatever that may be?

Daily for 13 weeks! holy cow - thats stressful! I was just reading online that some people have had success with acupuncture - have you ever tried any alternate therapies?

honorablemention
Regular Member


Date Joined Sep 2008
Total Posts : 26
   Posted 5/31/2010 12:36 AM (GMT -6)   
i had several symptoms that occurred at the same time. the swallowing thing and the spasms...

i've read that spasms could be triggered by stomach acid entering the esophagus...or vice versa...


and the feeling of something being in the throat is common in GERD and spasms...

couchtater
Elite Member


Date Joined Jul 2009
Total Posts : 14475
   Posted 5/31/2010 8:24 AM (GMT -6)   
Okay, folks. :)
Your misery is caused by your vegus nerve becoming irritated. The vegus nerve runs down the back of your esophagus and attaches to your heart. When the acid affects the LES it vegus nerve is affected too. It can cause all sorts of pains in odd parts of your body.

You both need to see a GI and have several tests run. One is the manometry to check for problems with your swallowing and LES.

Please see the GI and request these tests.

Joy

CathyA
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2005
Total Posts : 1543
   Posted 5/31/2010 9:54 AM (GMT -6)   
Yes, I get it occasionally too, and it IS extremely painful.
Drinking water seems to make it the worst for me. Sometimes, just eating a little something can slap it out of spasm for me.

I take Caltrate-plus regularly (calcium supplements). I've discovered that if I skip it for a few days, I get these spasms back. Have you ever considered taking calcium supplements? I sometimes take Rolaids if I'm out and don't have the Caltrate. Calcium is what those kinds of tablets (Rolaids, tums, etc.) mostly have in them. I like Rolaids because it doesn't have aluminum.
I absolutely hate that pain! But taking Calcium supplements regularly has really helped.
Caffeine, chocolate are also hard on that area of the esophagus.
Good luck!

Alcie
Veteran Member


Date Joined Oct 2009
Total Posts : 5005
   Posted 5/31/2010 5:20 PM (GMT -6)   
You need barium swallow to check for nutcracker esophagus and other swallowing problems. Also add a cardiologist to your list of doctors. some of those symptoms are possibly heart.

Do you have a problem every single time you eat anything? If not keep a food log to check for food triggers/allergies/sensitivities.

There is a syndrome known as cardio-esophageal spasms, aka linked angina. Coronary vasospasm is sometimes caused by eating.
Alcie
 
 


honorablemention
Regular Member


Date Joined Sep 2008
Total Posts : 26
   Posted 6/6/2010 12:12 AM (GMT -6)   
couchtater said...
Okay, folks. :)
Your misery is caused by your vegus nerve becoming irritated. The vegus nerve runs down the back of your esophagus and attaches to your heart. When the acid affects the LES it vegus nerve is affected too. It can cause all sorts of pains in odd parts of your body.

You both need to see a GI and have several tests run. One is the manometry to check for problems with your swallowing and LES.

Please see the GI and request these tests.

Joy


i've had a manometry, upper gi twice, and a scope...i have little to no reflux...just horrible spasms...that havent responded to any treatment

honorablemention
Regular Member


Date Joined Sep 2008
Total Posts : 26
   Posted 6/6/2010 5:39 PM (GMT -6)   
alwayssick said...
Typically when I get the esophageal spasms, the inflammation in my esophagus has worsened - the cause. I will go to having trouble swallowing and digesting everything down (it feels like it gets stuck in the middle), it is very painful. There is a pill that you stick under your tounge and it can relax your insides, for the life of me, cannot remember the name, GI doc typically prescribes it for bowel spasms.


it's either levsin or symax probably...

Bluespot
New Member


Date Joined Jul 2010
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 7/22/2010 3:37 PM (GMT -6)   
I have had similar symptoms to yours.  I had taken Indocin for gout and my stomach started to hurt.  I then began to have what I call back spasms.  I would have intense pain in my upper back between my shoulder blades which radiated to my chest. The intense pain went down my left arm and i thought I would DIE.  I had to lay down and sometimes I would shake all over from the pain.  Doctors told me it was stress and put me on anti-anxiety.  I would have at least one spasm a day and it crippled me. I had to leave work or run out to my car if shopping. At last I had a non-tolorable one and my husband took me to ER.  They ran every cardio test including angio-gram where they infuse ink into the veins of your heart. ($28,000 later.....) All came back negative.  Some spasms, I would gag and burp so I thought it might be my stomach. I began to take tums right before the spasm and it lessened the spasm!  I then went to a gastroenterologist and had an endoscopy.  It came back showing that it was very irritated (probably due to the medicine Indocin I had taken) but no cancer cells. I am taking Kapidex  to heal it and the spasms have subsided some after 1 1/2 years but I still get them.  Some things i learned:  Alcohol will bring one on the next day.  Do not drink soda!!!!!  or any drinks with citrus acid in it. Beer is ok.  Spegetti sause is taboo so is anything that would normally cause heartburn.  Take a tums or a couple swigs of pepto bismol when you first feel the spasm coming on - it reduced mine.  I write down every spasm I have, date, time, what I ate recently and how bad it is. 
Good luck with your discovery - hope my experience will help you.

Tinlou
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2010
Total Posts : 395
   Posted 7/23/2010 8:16 PM (GMT -6)   
I first got this exact pain a few years ago and oh my is it scary!!! I thought I was having heart attack since the symptoms do mimic each other quite a bit. Upper back pain that radiates to the jaw...so scary. I have been getting it more and more recently too and now I have to have a HIDA scan to see if it is my gallbladder. Would my gallbladder cause these symptoms?

honorablemention
Regular Member


Date Joined Sep 2008
Total Posts : 26
   Posted 7/24/2010 1:10 AM (GMT -6)   
Tinlou said...
I first got this exact pain a few years ago and oh my is it scary!!! I thought I was having heart attack since the symptoms do mimic each other quite a bit. Upper back pain that radiates to the jaw...so scary. I have been getting it more and more recently too and now I have to have a HIDA scan to see if it is my gallbladder. Would my gallbladder cause these symptoms?


i think gallbladder problems cause pain in the upper right quadrant. im sure the pain can radiate to other areas of the body though. I had to undergo testing to rule out gallbladder problems too.

Tinlou
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2010
Total Posts : 395
   Posted 7/24/2010 8:57 AM (GMT -6)   
So strange.. I had the Ultrasound and now my doctor wants me to have the hida scan. I don't have the urq pain like most people so I am not sure why he is so convinced that this is gallbladder issues. I feel as if it is just bad gerd/reflux but who knows, I am not the doctor so I guess I better listen to him.

honorablemention
Regular Member


Date Joined Sep 2008
Total Posts : 26
   Posted 7/24/2010 5:28 PM (GMT -6)   
Tinlou said...
So strange.. I had the Ultrasound and now my doctor wants me to have the hida scan. I don't have the urq pain like most people so I am not sure why he is so convinced that this is gallbladder issues. I feel as if it is just bad gerd/reflux but who knows, I am not the doctor so I guess I better listen to him.


i didnt have any upper right quadrant pain either. it's probably just to rule out the gallbladder so they can do other tests.

when i went to the ER for my pain, the first thing the dr asked me was if i still had my gallbladder.

im sure if your hida scan is normal, you'll be sent for an esophagram/barium swallow.

merlinsmidwife
New Member


Date Joined Oct 2010
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 10/3/2010 8:35 PM (GMT -6)   
Just found this site while looking for more info about oesophageal spasm (sorry about the spelling: I'm English!). I couldn't see any mention of glyceryl trinitrate in anyone's posts, which surprised me.
I've been having pain on and off now for nearly 4 years, but they still haven't made an official diagnosis! (Not helped by the fact that because I suffer with depression I keep forgetting to take my medication.) The very first bout had me rushed into hospital with a suspected heart attack, but that was ruled out pretty quickly. Then, since my cholesterol levels and blood pressure were both raised, they decided to put me on statins, aspirin and nitrates while they were investigating, in the assumption that I probably had angina, (my mother had also suffered with it), and also gave me a glyceryl trinitrate spray. They did an angiogram which proved to be negative, but the pattern of my pains tied in more with variant, or prinzmetal's, angina, which wouldn't show up on an angiogram in any case.
They also did a gastroscopy, found that I had GERD, with the beginnings of ulceration, and have been treating that with one of the ppi's, omeprazole.
But the point that I am trying, rather long-windedly, to make, is that at the moment it looks like I either have oesophageal spasm problems, or I have variant angina - but the pain of BOTH of them can be relieved with the use of the spray under the tongue. (Another reason why they haven't yet diagnosed me!) Is it possible that some of you might also benefit from the spray (or tablets), or is this something you have already unsuccessfully tried?
Hope this suggestion might help at least one of you.

Post Edited (merlinsmidwife) : 10/3/2010 8:46:14 PM (GMT-6)


honorablemention
Regular Member


Date Joined Sep 2008
Total Posts : 26
   Posted 10/3/2010 9:53 PM (GMT -6)   
@merlinsmidwife, i wasnt given the opportunity to try any nitroglycerin spray by my first GI specialist...he had many reasons why he wouldnt write a rx for it...none of them were good reasons considering i was in pain almost daily.

merlinsmidwife
New Member


Date Joined Oct 2010
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 10/4/2010 11:55 AM (GMT -6)   
Sorry to hear that, honourablemention. Is there any chance that you might be able to try it now, or would it interfere with your other medication?
I am lucky in that my pain is sporadic, but because of that I am unable to work out what triggers it, and pass that information on to the doctors. I do know that in spite of the fact that I have told them several times, the GI specialists at the hospital haven't yet taken in that I have two types of pain: one which is almost certainly oesophagitis, and the other, the 'mystery', one. The cardiac doctors gave up on me as soon as they got a negative result from the angiogram, and passed me on to the GI people, but I'm not entirely convinced that my problems are purely gastro-intestinal. But I'm just a lay-person - what do I know?!
Horrible though I find my pain, it may be that I do not get it as severely as you, or other forum members, (maybe it isn't caused by spasm, but by angina??), and perhaps that is why I find the spray effective, but I do hope that there are some out there who could obtain some relief from it.

Post Edited (merlinsmidwife) : 10/4/2010 12:02:14 PM (GMT-6)


couchtater
Elite Member


Date Joined Jul 2009
Total Posts : 14475
   Posted 10/4/2010 4:06 PM (GMT -6)   
The vegus nerve can be the cause. It runs along the back of your esophagus and attached to your heart. When you have gerd it can inflame the nerve and cause spasms and in some tacacardia (sp?).
Joy

honorablemention
Regular Member


Date Joined Sep 2008
Total Posts : 26
   Posted 10/5/2010 1:24 AM (GMT -6)   
I don't have the spasms much anymore. I had a severe yeast infection in my esophagus that has been successfully treated and the pains have gone away...

I'm not going to get too excited because they've gone away for months before only to come back and terrorize me everyday.

I should say that I don't have the acute spasms anymore...I still have spasms constantly that cause bad dysphagia.

purplemonkey
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Date Joined Sep 2010
Total Posts : 18
   Posted 10/7/2010 11:52 AM (GMT -6)   
Ive had GERD for some years now, at first it wasnt too bad.  The last year and a half has been somewhat difficult. Until I saw the test that ruled out lung and heart problems I took it as maybe something other than the acid reflux acting up. I't turns out my heart and lungs are in excellent condition.  I still find it unbelievable that acid reflux causes this much trouble. My Dr. wants to try something else since the Pariet isnt working for me and up the dosage on  my anxiety meds. Our goal now is to try and get this monster under control and while thats going on keep me comfortable and pain free. Im also detoxing seems to help lots. That vegus nerve thing sounds exactly whats going on with me, Why O Why! Anyhow , Good Luck with the Pariet hope it works for you:)
 
 
Ive experienced every GERD symptom there is, some of them are so painful they can make you cry.

couchtater
Elite Member


Date Joined Jul 2009
Total Posts : 14475
   Posted 10/7/2010 4:55 PM (GMT -6)   
Welcome purple monkey, feel free to post your introduction in a new thread.
Joy

Alcie
Veteran Member


Date Joined Oct 2009
Total Posts : 5005
   Posted 10/9/2010 12:55 PM (GMT -6)   
It sounds like some of you might possibly be having cardio-esophageal reflex (not reflux). Search the term and you will find research papers. It's not well known, even by doctors. As Joy says, they heart and esophagus and stomach are connected by the vagus nerve.

It's impossible to differentiate the pain of esophageal spasms from coronary artery spasms, except that often the latter is accompanied by tachycardia. They both hurt in the same place - mid-sternum. A GPEH (giant paraesophageal hernia) can hurt in the same place also, because it's pushed through the diaphragm in the same place the esophagus is supposed to go down.

To see if you are having heart pain, and stop it if it's from tachycardia, you can try vasovagal maneuvers and coughing. Bear down with your abdominal muscles like trying to eliminate.

By the time you get to the ER tach is usually gone by itself. A barium swallow will show a GPEH.
Alcie
 
 

telstar88
New Member


Date Joined Dec 2010
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 12/4/2010 4:39 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi Everyone,

I'm a 31 year old male who has been suffering severe Esophageal spasm and Nutcrackers Esophagus for around 4 years now. I was going to specialists and hospitals for nearly two years before I was diagnosed. Looking up my symptoms online when it first started I found out about Esophageal Spasm and said to my specialist at the time that I thought that it may be the problem as it fitted my symptoms. I was told immediately there was no way it was that!! Anyway, after nearly another two years of pain and tests and I said to my specialist at the time that I wanted to be referred to the best specialist they know of in my city (Melbourne, Australia). Within two weeks this this new guy had me diagnosed and it was exactly what I thought it was very early on. I tried MANY drugs and nothing worked at all except Amitriptylene. It has changed my life. I only take 25MG a day and I still get sick, but nowhere near the amount I used to. I can go for weeks without having any symptoms now.
Anyway anyone who has not had a diagnosis or success with anything yet, I strongly recommend finding the BEST specialist you can. I know this condition is VERY hard to diagnose so if you think that you may be suffering from it, ask for a prescription of Amitriptylene and other drugs that might be used to treat this condition and give it a try. If it doesn't work you have lost nothing! I am sure there are a lot of people out there suffering this just because they are finding it impossible to get it diagnosed!!

If anyone wants to contact me regarding my experience, please email me on seanhallam@hotmail.com.

Good luck guys
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