Help/Advice with increasingly severe GERD

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Lilya
New Member


Date Joined Oct 2010
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 10/11/2010 7:04 AM (GMT -6)   
I have been suffering with severe acid reflux for approximately a year. I was on Omeprazole for 6 months and then stepped down. I was symptom free for a few months, but then it came back with increasing severity.

I am now on Omeprazole 40mg daily and have been for over 3 months but I am progressively getting worse. In the last week I have now had severe chest discomfort (behind the breastbone), a lump in the back of my throat and problems swallowing, which have led to me to have some difficulties breathing, especially at night when my chest feels really tight and heavy, it's hard to describe. I am not currently able to go into work because of the severity, and whilst I am struggling to work from home it is very hard due to the constant discomfort and lack of sleep. I am waiting for an appointment (in 2 weeks time) with my GP but they are very busy right now and have told me to go to A&E at the hospital if I suffer breathing problems, however I really do not want to go to the emergency room for reflux as I don't see what that will achieve. I am on a waiting list for an endoscopy but am told this could be 6 - 12 months (with the NHS, UK).

I had pancreatitis 6 years ago at age 21 and subsequently had my gallbladder removed aged 22 (27 now, female).

I am really struggling to stay positive when it's getting worse and impairing my work, is there anything I can do? Should I be pushing my GP to refer me to a specialist or for some specific test as the Omeprazole is really not helping this time? I had to really struggle to be referred for an endoscopy and it feels like my GP does not really take my reflux as a serious problem, but it is very much beginning to affect my work and home life too.

If Omeprazole does not work is there anything at all I can do or take to improve my lifestyle or make it possible for me to at least get some sleep at night and make it into work. Hoping someone here will have some advice, help or suggestions, thank you.

couchtater
Elite Member


Date Joined Jul 2009
Total Posts : 14475
   Posted 10/11/2010 10:11 AM (GMT -6)   
The gerd could be causing acid to get into your lungs. You need to push the GP with this new symptom. You might have to go to the ER if he needs proof of your severity.
Joy

ZhyKitty
Regular Member


Date Joined Sep 2010
Total Posts : 171
   Posted 10/11/2010 10:40 AM (GMT -6)   
Along with a referral to a gastroenterologist (I hope I spelled that at least close to right) so that you can get started on the path to healing you might want to modify your diet. I eventually got to the point where I just couldn't do solid food without serious pain so what I do now is a special diet I made up for myself...which helps a lot but it's catered to my individual problems and I'm not sure it would be ideal for anyone else....
However, I'd be happy to share it with you.

When I wake up I put 8 oz of 1% milk in a personal sized blender, add 3 ice cubes, one scoop of GNC whey protein (chocolate flavor is delicious but then, they're all good that I've tried) and I blend it all up and slowly sip it until it's gone.
That's breakfast.

Once that sits on my stomach for a while I get a bottle of smart water, room temperature, with a tiny lemon wedge squeezed in and I start drinking it. I then take a liquid multivitamin from GNC and my first dose of prilosec.

about 11:30 am I feel hungry again so I take 8 oz of water, put it into my personal sized blender, 3 tablespoons of activia vanilla yogurt, 3 ice cubes, a scoop of citrucel (must be this brand as it is the only one that doesnt cause gas which is always a problem since I'm a bad air swallower) and blend it up - then slowly sip it till it's gone. You want to make sure you don't take too long with this one so that the fiber doesnt settle.

Then I drink another bottle of room temperature water with a tiny lemon wedge squeezed in.

Around 2:30 or 3 I'm hungry again so if I'm feeling brave I MIGHT try a disk of wholegrain, low-calorie, very thin bread with a piece of ham. The trick with solid food is to never take a bite bigger than you fingertip and always chew it to a paste before you swallow it. Sometimes I can eat this without too much trouble. Other days I know I cant so I will have a little bit of sugar free protein jello (buy at GNC) or maybe take a handful of frozen fruit, 6 oz of 1% milk or water, 3 ice cubes, one package of splenda, and blend it up for lunch.
Most days I can tolerate that and I vary the fruit which is why I vary the milk/water.

Then another bottle of water with a tiny lemon wedge squeezed in, maybe two until dinner time - right before dinnertime, I also do another prilosec.

In the evening I have another GNC shake like the one I had for breakfast (sometimes I vary the flavor). I make these fresh myself rather than buying the pre-made ones to control the amount of sodium I'm getting - because I have high bloodpressure.

More water/lemon.

If I'm hungry just before bed I make another smoothie - but the way I do them, listed above, they're less fattening and not hard to digest.

I still have reflux on this plan, don't get me wrong, but I have less of it and most of the time it doesn't burn when it comes up as it does when it's real food. I also think I'll be able to stay on this after surgery - or I hope so.
Once in a while you let yourself go and you try to eat something you just shouldn't have but I try to keep it to softer, less spicy things like Quiches and such..... and sometimes I can hold that in.... again, if you eat real food you want to never take a bite bigger than your fingertip and always chew it until it's a liquid or a paste.

It may not be the most balanced diet in the world but I can hold it down, not mess with my blood sugar or my high blood pressure, and not suffer much while on it. If any part of it appeals to you, you might try it.

Good luck, feel better, and please dont give up. GERD seems to give us all something in common but the remedies or what gives us relief seems to vary a bit....like some people can't tolerate cold drinks, etc.

I see people on here who talk about eating things like Mexican food or pizza and just can't believe my eyes because I'm still pre-surgery - and I can't have those things. So YMMV.

Get yourself to the dr and ask for a referral to a gastroenterologist so you can start the necessary tests to move forward.
Unfortunately, problems like GERD and a haital hernia (if you have one) don't fix themselves.

Post Edited (ZhyKitty) : 10/11/2010 9:44:02 AM (GMT-6)

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