I have been having mild and occasional symptoms of LPR for years, but they have been absolutely unbearable for the last 5 months. I didn't even realize what was causing all my problems until a couple months ago. I have a very weak voice that goes hoarse frequently. I even completely lost my voice for 2 weeks last November. I have some coughing and tickle feeling in throat, as well as sore throat. I had a sore throat for almost 3 months straight and that has started to let up, but it seems my voice is starting to go again and I have a new strange symptom. Everytime I swallow food or burp, immediately after I get this terrible feeling in my throat. Like it's squeezing and/or spasming. It's very uncomfortable and almost makes me feel like I can't inhale for a second or two. Eating has become quite the chore. I have seen my primary care doctor + an ENT, neither of which were helpful. The ENT said reflux was probably to blame for my sore throat and hoarseness, but refused to prescribe me anything because I'm breastfeeding my son. This was 2 months ago, btw. So I went to see my PCP who orginally tried to treat me for strep, but then agreed with the ent that this was most likely due to reflux and put me on Prevacid 30 mg once a day. I only took it for a week with no difference so I gave up on it and just used over counter stuff like Pepcid Complete and Gaviscon. I was feeling pretty good for about a month. My symptoms weren't gone but weren't nearly as bad as they had been. Then in the last week everything has gone downhill. Out of nowhere I start getting the sore throat again. Then the voice gets weaker and weaker, sometimes I can only whisper and sometimes it sounds almost normal. But I always have a weird feeling in my throat like when I have laryngitis. As well as a lump feeling in my throat and constantly having to clear mucus. Then this new weird throat feeling when I try to eat or burp. It almost feels like a mini laryngospasm or something. So I started the Prevacid again yesterday and I went back to the doctor today, actually my doctor couldn't see me so I had to see the nurse practitioner. She just told me to continue the Prevacid for 2 weeks and if I'm no better to make an appointment with a gastro dr. I told her that from the research I've done, I should be on a double dosage of Prevacid and she said no, that's not true. Well I refuse to wait 2 weeks to see if I'm going to improve because it sounds like no one does on a regular dose so I went ahead and called a gastro dr today and what do you know, he can't see me for a month! I'm so frustrated, I can't eat, can't breathe, and am tired of not being able to talk properly. I have a 4 year old and a 7 month old and my husband works 12 hr days 6 days a week so I'm worn out. I have a few questions for anyone who might know though....
1) Does anyone get better with PPI's? I have read so many things about people who have had zero help with PPI's or who say they actually made them worse. I have a pretty negative outlook after all the disappointing things I've read.
2) Should I go ahead and up my dose to 30 mg of Prevacid twice a day until I can see the gastro dr in one month? It seems pointless to me to take 1 a day if it's not going to help.
3) Should I even be seeing a gastro doctor? I've read many times that an ENT treats lpr. Should I try to get into see an ENT again while I'm waiting?
4) Does anyone know of a doctor in Virginia that is knowledable with lpr? It seems that doctors around where I live just don't know enough about it. With all the research I've done, I feel like I know more than they do, and when I try to tell them what I've learned, they don't appreciate it.
5) How does one get on with life living like this? I'm miserable. I had planned to homeschool my daughter this fall but now don't know if I'll even be able to with barely being able to speak.
6) Has anyone benefitted from the surgery for this? I have read 1 or 2 success stories but mostly negative and certainly don't want to go that route if I could just end up worse off.
Thanks so much.