I have what I consider to be kind of a strange GERD story, and I am hoping someone here can provide a little support, advice, etc.
I started having problems six years ago when I was 19. When I ate, I got sharp pains in my lower esophagus/upper stomach, which caused vomiting. I saw several doctors. One told me it was IBS, another muscle cramps, and another suggested GERD. I tried PPIs with no success, and just "dealt with it" for several years. Then I started having more "classic" GERD symptoms, like heartburn, and more recently chest pain, some regurgitation when I belch, and a sour taste in my mouth; in addition, I have less traditional symptoms such as nausea, belching, the vomiting, and a feeling of being full quickly after I eat and for hours afterward. I finally found a gastroenterologist who would listen! She did an upper endoscopy and found nothing irregular. Then she ordered a motility and impedance study, with a 24-hour pH study. She still did not find anything structurally wrong, but she did find that I reflux about 80 times a day, day and night, regardless of whether I'm laying down or not. I have tried 4 PPIs without any success, so she referred me to a surgeon for nissen fundoplication.
At the surgical consultation, the surgeon disagreed with the gastroenterologist. He thinks I may have gastroparesis - that perhaps my stomach does not work correctly in order to pass food through, which is why I always feel full, and would account for the nausea and vomiting. He also said gastroparesis can cause GERD, because when the food can't get through to the small intenstine, it's like it tries to find somewhere else to go, so it goes up to the esophagus.
This surgeon marks the seventh doctor I've seen, with potentially the seventh different diagnosis. Meanwhile, because I get no relief from medicine, I am miserable. This has impacted every facet of my life. I feel like there is essentially nothing I can eat. I've given up all the classically bad GERD foods, but in addition, even when I eat the most bland things, I still feel awful. And I feel awful because I still get hungry, so I also have hunger pains! Like many of you who I've read, I also have anxiety, and this is not helping! I am scheduled to have a gastric emptying study next week, and so I am familiarizing myself with what might be a new diagnosis - or not.
Has anyone else heard of gastroparesis (or delayed gastric emptying) in association with GERD? The surgeon also commented that belching is an irregular symptom of GERD - but I thought it was pretty common. Any thoughts? My gastroenterologist and now this surgeon both work at a reknowned university hospital, so I know they are the best of the best - but still! I am feeling sick and stressed, and would appreciate any insight anyone might have.
Thanks so much!
Post Edited (Alk301) : 10/3/2011 5:33:58 AM (GMT-6)