lorazepan (benzodiazepines) inhibits reflux?

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mock turtle
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Date Joined Mar 2011
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   Posted 9/4/2011 9:31 AM (GMT -6)   
i have a procedure coming up and im pretty anxious about the whole thing

i got my doc to prescribe a short course of lorazepam, a benzodiazepine to calm me down in the days leading up to the procedure

so for two days now at a dose of .5mg bid i have experienced no reflux that i am aware of

i say, that i am aware of, because i realize, it is possible that the sedative effect of the meds may be masking the experience


this i know, when ever i reflux i produce big quantities of phlegm, i cough a lot, and my throat gets swollen,

none of this has happened, so i suspect the reflux events have been at least greatly diminished

i suspect the calming down i got from the lorazepam helped my LES to stop twitching open and close

i have heard that baclofen has ben prescribed to halt TLESRs (inappropriate opening of the LES)

and i have read that baclofen has a similar mode of action to benzodiazepines!!

i wonder if it is true that the lorazepam decreased or stopped my reflux events!! ??

so last night i put it to the test

was invited to friends house for a holiday BBQ and i broke 3 rules

i ate two trigger foods (tomatoes and garden mint that was in a salad) had seconds of BBQ chicken, and drank two beers.

and once again i feel no signs of reflux?! whats goin? this is wild

Post Edited (mock turtle) : 9/4/2011 9:36:45 AM (GMT-6)

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   Posted 9/4/2011 10:33 AM (GMT -6)   
mock turtle,
I suspect it is just a strange phenomenon.............I have been on a benzo for many years and I have GERD which acts up whenever it chooses too.........most often when I eat the wrong foods.  The benzo has never made it better or worse.  I have never taken a benzo and had relief of heartburn or reflux.
There is much info that points toward benzos  relaxing the LES muscle. IMHO, I would not use this medication for GERD.  It has it's place in use for other medical conditions.

Moderator: GERD/Heartburn and Heart/Cardiovascular Disease.

"If you can't change the world, change your world"

mock turtle
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Date Joined Mar 2011
Total Posts : 467
   Posted 9/4/2011 2:08 PM (GMT -6)   
maybe it was just coincidence with something else i did or a food i ate or...i dont know what

and yes benzos like ETOH are notorious for being bad to the LES

i just dont know what to make of it

maybe just the luck of the draw

mock turtle
Regular Member

Date Joined Mar 2011
Total Posts : 467
   Posted 9/4/2011 2:22 PM (GMT -6)   
im really sorry i started this thread

i should have kept this strange experience o my self

i hope i haven't harmed people

the research evidence clearly states benzos increase risk for gerd

heres just one of many

"By Katrina Woznicki,
Published: May 10, 2005
Reviewed by Ethan A. Halm, MD, MPH; Associate Professor in the Departments of Medicine and Health Policy at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York .
Click here to provide feedback
Action Points

The study suggests drinking carbonated soft drinks or taking benzodiazepines before bedtime increases the risk of nighttime heartburn.

Nighttime heartburn can indicate more severe forms of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD).

When evaluating patients with heartburn complaints, ask about use of carbonated soft drinks or benzodiazepines, in addition to the usual risk factors for GERD.

TUCSON, Ariz., May 10-Drinking carbonated soft drinks or using benzodiazepines before bedtime increases the risk of nocturnal heartburn according to a large prospective observational cohort study.

These relationships were found in an analysis by an Arizona team of participants in the Sleep Heart Health Study. A total of 15,314 participants completed questions about heartburn during sleep, and 3,806 of these (24.9%) reported having nocturnal heartburn.

In addition to the usual heartburn trigger suspects -- such as hypertension, obesity, and snoring -- carbonated soft drinks and benzodiazepines were also discovered to be clinical predictors of supine reflux, according to Ronnie Fass, M.D. of the University of Arizona College of Medicine in Tucson and colleagues. "

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   Posted 9/4/2011 2:27 PM (GMT -6)   
Perhaps it's having an indirect effect; if you are bit more relaxed perhaps that is in itself blocking your normal cycle of biochemical events?! It's also possible that there is something atypical about your particular reflux sequence of events and for some reason this helps. If it were me, I would ask if I could continue the experiment a little longer. If you've really cracked it the benefits may outweigh any disadvantages?

If it definitely helps you but you are not able to take it continuously, your PCP may be amenable to prescribing some from time to time for a "symptom holiday".

Good luck with your tests and drug experiments!

New stuff: GERD. Interstitial Cystitis
Lifelong stuff: Food allergies, eczema, asthma

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   Posted 9/4/2011 2:31 PM (GMT -6)   
Well, not one doc has asked me about my diet or drinks, except alcohol! And I'd had two cystoscopies before the urology folk even mentioned coffee, which anyone with IC can't tolerate!

I think it's good to share our ideas - with a "don't try this at home kids" note of course!!

New stuff: GERD. Interstitial Cystitis
Lifelong stuff: Food allergies, eczema, asthma

Regular Member

Date Joined Jul 2011
Total Posts : 77
   Posted 9/5/2011 9:28 AM (GMT -6)   
hi mock turtle,

how are you today?
I really courious, did you still got free reflux today?
i hope it really works for you.

did you was on ppi when u take lorazepam?

Best wishes

Regular Member

Date Joined Jul 2011
Total Posts : 363
   Posted 9/5/2011 10:18 AM (GMT -6)   
I know from experience that even a low dose of Valium (Diazepam) over many years made my GERD much worse. I had taken a higher dose of this particular benzo right after menopause and got down to 2.5 mg and just never got off of that amount and when I look back and my experience in my journal the only drug that stayed static was the low-dose Valium and it really seemed to have done a number on my GERD. It was over a period of about ten years.

Good luck with whatever your decision is.
Falling down is part of life, getting back up is living. -Unknown

Lap Nissen Fundoplication August 1, 2011

Regular Member

Date Joined Apr 2011
Total Posts : 377
   Posted 10/3/2011 12:19 PM (GMT -6)   
I saw a new psychiatrist recently who thinks my anxiety could be a cause of the GERD symptoms that I have .. so he has prescribed 0.5 mg of ativan twice a day for 4 weeks. He thinks it is possible that once my nervous system settles down - I should be able to take the PPIs. I am not quite sure if the PPI side effects can be addressed so directly with the benzos ....so not quite sure if I should take it ... given that it could possibly make the situation worse than help me?

Regular Member

Date Joined Sep 2011
Total Posts : 275
   Posted 10/3/2011 10:08 PM (GMT -6)   
Hey Mock...Are you familiar with Dr. Stuart Shipko? He is a psychiatrist who published original research about treating GERD with Xanax.

Google him when you get a chance.

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Date Joined Apr 2011
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   Posted 10/4/2011 2:25 AM (GMT -6)   
Has anyone tried St John's wort? It's a natural anti-depressant with powers as potent as Prozac. It's probably risky to take alongside a ppi as it may reduce the efficacy (clears it faster from the body) of the drug - but for anyone who's not on a ppi (or other medication it may interact with) it may be worth a trial.


(link to interactions)
New stuff: GERD. Interstitial Cystitis
Lifelong stuff: Food allergies, eczema, asthma

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Total Posts : 639
   Posted 10/4/2011 7:27 PM (GMT -6)   
I've been taking lorazepam for anxiety for the last 3 months and have not noticed any change in my reflux. I've also been on Zoloft, Prozac, and Effexor for depression and haven't noticed a change with those either.

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