Nice to meet you all - Dear god help :)

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New Member

Date Joined Feb 2011
Total Posts : 9
   Posted 2/25/2011 9:31 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi, my name's Ian. I was diagnosed with gerd at 17 years old, when I began feeling sick each day and dry heaving. They diagnosed it through an scan w/ ingested barium, so I am fairly certain as to my issue. My gerd symptoms manifest themselves as nausea, burning in the stomach, and gas.

I was prescribed nexium 1x40mg at the age of 17, and I am now 24, so I have been taking it for the better half of a decade. For 99% of those 7 years it has worked well; however, within the past 4 weeks my gerd has come back something fierce. It is so severe that I have lost most of my appetite and in these past 4 weeks I have dropped a little over 10 lbs, and none of that was from exercise, as I was far too lethargic (due to lack of food) to work out. At its worst I was eating half a plain turkey sandwich for lunch and a very small bowl of plain thin pasta or noodles for dinner. No other food.

Several days ago I had it so bad that when I tried to eat just a few bites of oatmeal in the morning I ended up barely preventing myself from vomiting for the next 5 hours, before taking an anti-nausea pill and making an emergency appointment with a GI doctor. His solution was to take me off the 1x40mg nexium and put me on 2x40mg omeprazole + 150mg zantac. If this isn't extreme overkill I don't know what is. He also did a bloodtest and said everything came back as normal. My stomach muscles are still sore from that day, that is how intense it was.

At this moment I am down to these symptoms: I wake up every night anywhere from 4 am to 6 am feeling like I need to vomit. It sends me into a panic attack too (because it makes me think I have food poisoning), so that simply adds to the fun. I also exhibit early satiety, but it is not as bad as it was before. I am not quite up to 3 full meals a day, but I can manage 2 small/regular sized meals with some snacks in between. Right now I have a dull pain in my stomach, but this might actually be a side effect of the calcium + magnesium + vitamin D supplement I take.

So, what I actually came here to ask is what you think of my regimen for gerd. I am still on the omeprazole, but my goal is to get off it somehow, because neither omeprazole nor nexium are approved for long term use and it seems the GI doctor solution is to simply up the dose, even if it is to extreme amounts. I do not want to limit my stomach acid production by that much, as I fear it will lead to malnutrition and leave me more vulnerable to food poisoning.

This is the regimen as of now:
2x40mg omeprazole (I don't use the zantac, I think the 2x omeprazole itself is overkill).

Papaya & Pineapple Enzyme for each 'major' meal. (Means I'm taking it 2 or 3 times a day).

Calcium, Magnesium, + Vitamin D once a day.

Acidophilus complex, 10 billion organisms, once a day.

Aloe Vera Juice, 2-4 oz, once a day.

I also have L-Glutamine, but I haven't tried taking it yet, as I'm worried I'm taking too many things.

I have improved, but my life is still not that great, and I still wake up in the middle of the night feeling like I have to throw up.

Am I using too many supplements? Are there other supplements I should use in addition to these, or instead of them?

Thanks for taking the time to read this longwinded post :),

I was on Celexa for anxiety for the 7 years I took the nexium and was fine. I went off the Celexa a few months ago because of lethargy issues, and the gerd symptoms reappeared around 1 month after I stopped. I am now taking a lower dose of Prozac, but it does not seem to help.

My diet consists of water, greek yogurt, kefir, various whole wheat crackers, rice cakes, rice & vegetable bowls (broccoli, mushrooms, etc), lean poultry like turkey and sometimes skinless chicken breast, low-fat organic milk & grape nut cereal, fiberful fruit bars, cinnamon graham crackers (not sure if those are okay... but cinnamon is good for gerd, and so are graham crackers, so that was my reasoning :)), plain pasta.

I sleep with three pillows, on my left side. It does not seem to help keep me from waking up at night.

I eat well before I go to sleep, as I go to sleep at 1 AM~ and my last meal is generally around 6 or 7 PM.

tl;dr: Long time nexium user, lost 10 lbs in a month w/ returning gerd, want advice on natural gerd regimen (see bold text) to wean off PPI.

Forum Moderator

Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 7188
   Posted 2/25/2011 9:52 PM (GMT -6)   
Welcome to Healing Well! I can't speak to your entire regimen, but 40mg of Prilosec (omeprazole) twice a day is quite normal for someone who has persistent symptoms on lower doses.

Also, the 150mg Zantac on top of that is also very normal.

I was on 40mg Protonix twice a day with 300mg Zantac at bedtime for years. Also, as far as long term use of Prilosec...I understand your concern, as I felt the same way. The information does say it's for short term, but I've been taking it for 20 years, and many others here have taken PPIs for extended time. The GI docs seem quite comfortable prescribing it for long term use. It beats the alternative.

I hope you find a way to feel better soon. If your doc prescribed the Zantac, I suggest you give it a try. The two meds together can sometimes be quite effective.

Good luck! I'm sure others will be by to share more information and experiences with you.
Take care,

New Member

Date Joined Feb 2011
Total Posts : 9
   Posted 2/25/2011 11:07 PM (GMT -6)   
Thanks. I will try the Zantac at night too, for now, but in the end my goal is to get off these medicines somehow. If I can get the same relief in a way that has no or less RISK to cause some (or ideally no) side effects then that is what I should aim for. I do talk to my GI doc on monday about it.
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