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horizon
New Member


Date Joined Nov 2011
Total Posts : 19
   Posted 7/10/2012 2:58 PM (GMT -6)   
 Well, I went back to GI for f/u appt after endo.  The endo showed some inflammation of the lower esophagus, but everything else looked normal.  The biopsies did not show anything. He said as I did not smoke and had no history of smoking, he felt the the reflux was due to over-sensitivity of the esophagus causing trouble in upper stomach and throat.  He said I should stay on PPI for now, but proposed one of two other things. 
 
 I could go to an ENT to see what they thought or I could try a low dose of Buspar (5mg). He said it was relatively benign and it had proved helpful to many of his patients like me.  I don't want to go to the ENT because I don't have the money or time ( I am a caregiver for my autistic son and it is HARD to get to appts and I am on a payment plan now at the GI).  He was OK with that.  I decided to try the Buspar to see if it helped with my throat issues. 
 
I am a little down because there is no silver bullet. I have already raised my bed, altered my diet etc.  The PPI eliminated most of the burping, coughing and particularly the chest tightness (hated that). But, the lump in the throat hangs around.
 
Anyway, here I am.  I still think perimenopause might be a culprit, though no Dr. has agreed about that thus far.  I am hoping the Buspar might help, but I am no big RX fan....

drtinsac
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2012
Total Posts : 458
   Posted 7/11/2012 8:36 AM (GMT -6)   
What other tests have you had? From what I read, the diagnosis of "esophageal hypersensitivity" is made only after 24 hour PH monitoring.

I had the 24 hr. monitoring, and the results indicate "No evidence of esophageal hypersensitivity". Yet my gastro doctor still suggested an antidepressant because he said it was hypersensitive. I never got a good feeling from that gastro doc anyway.

I was not and am not interested in taking an antidepressant. Instead, I sought to see an ENT who I am going to see this Friday.

Your problem sounds very much like mine, and is probably best considered LPR and not GERD. If I were you I would definitely see an ENT. They may be able to give you a test/exam which will better assess whether refluxate is making it to your throat area. Even in LPR testing there are still issues related to which tool provides the best chance at diagnosis. The ENT will be able to look at your throat to see if you have issues there, and the gastro doc may not have looked at that area.

If you don't have the money, it's your call, but the best thing to do would be to go to the ENT if you want some resolution, but I understand that will cost money. A tight throat is unpleasant but is not life threatening (it was my primary symptom before PPIs and I KNOW it's very hard on quality of life). So if you needed to put off further diagnosis or treatment, you could probably safely do that.

drtinsac
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2012
Total Posts : 458
   Posted 7/11/2012 8:40 AM (GMT -6)   
By the way, please update this thread if the buspar has helped. The PPI will probably help the throat tightness over time.

KitKat880
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2012
Total Posts : 132
   Posted 7/11/2012 9:49 AM (GMT -6)   
horizon- I think we've responded to each other's posts in the past and our symptoms are somewhat similar. I saw an ENT before I went to a gastro, and he was almost useless! I guess it really depends on the doctor. My ENT looked down my throat, said nothing was wrong, told me to stop dry swallowing, and sent me on my way. When I asked if benzos would help relieve the lump in my throat and the tightness, he told me he did not like them because they are addictive. End of discussion. Easy for him to say, since he doesn't have to deal with this aggravating symptom! Please update this thread once you've given the buspar a shot. I'm curious to know if it will work. So far no luck with the Lexapro.

DOGGBONES
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2012
Total Posts : 707
   Posted 7/11/2012 10:50 AM (GMT -6)   
 
To all
 
I went to see a top ENT at UW Hospital, and all I got was "I can do nothing for you that your GI hasn't already" and "would you like a referral for surgery". However, I did get him to admit that ppi's are bad news long term use.
 
I too have been given the hypersensitivity dx and was offered anti-d's as well. I'm starting to think it's a dx like IBS....we can't figure it out so this is what it must be. Ugh!
 
I also suffer from tight/lump in the throat. I garggle baking soda several times a day, it's not a magic bullet but it does help some.
 
I would like to know more about buspar as well.

horizon
New Member


Date Joined Nov 2011
Total Posts : 19
   Posted 7/12/2012 7:32 PM (GMT -6)   
Thanks,everyone, for the feedback. It helps to know that I am not the only one dealilng with this. I had the barium swallow last year before I was referred to the GI and it was normal. At that time, I just had the burping and chest tightness. The lump appeared last fall. I had been taking Pepcid since the swallow when I hadsymptoms. When I noticed the persistent lump and cough, I considered going to the ENT before I was referred to the GI, but my PCP thought the GI would be better. I could probably handle a visit to the ENT, but a succession of visits or tests would be a hardship now. And I have a strong suspicion that it would end up like exactly like it did for you, Kitkat and Dogbones.   I sort've felt he was offering it because he didn't have any other treatment options but the PPI and buspar and he wanted to give me another alternative.

I just started the Buspar last night and I have heard that it takes about 2 weeks-month before you can really assess the effect. I do have a moderate headache today that I hope will ease off as I become acclimated, but no dizziness thus far ( dose is low 5mg in am and 5 mg in pm). I will say that I did notice a slight decrease in the globus sensation this afternoon, so I am hoping that means something. I will update to let you know; it would be great if it did help as it is not an expensive or strong drug.

Do any of you get the idea that the doctor thinks stress might have triggered this? This could apply in my case, but this has been going on for about two years now. Stress must be a powerful force.

Post Edited (horizon) : 7/12/2012 6:40:14 PM (GMT-6)


KitKat880
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2012
Total Posts : 132
   Posted 7/13/2012 10:37 AM (GMT -6)   
I'm a type A person and I stress out really easily. I also live in a high stress area (right outside Washington, DC) so that probably doesn't help! I would say stress definitely had a role in the start of reflux for me. I had lost a pet that I had since childhood and was incredibly upset. I also had a medical scare that turned out to be nothing, as my GP thought it would, but it didn't help. Then all of a sudden, surprise! Acid reflux. Seemingly out of nowhere. I am not overweight, I don't smoke, I drink very rarely. I don't fit the profile of the "typical" GERD sufferer, but it seems like a lot of people here don't.
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