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New Member

Date Joined Jul 2012
Total Posts : 4
   Posted 7/16/2012 8:36 PM (GMT -6)   
I hope I'm posting my introduction in the right place. smilewinkgrin

Hi everyone!

I’m 43 years old, am a single mom with 2 teenage boys. I suffered with heartburn my entire teenage years and have had osteoarthritis since I was a teen as well.

I have been on PPIs for the past 8 years or so for GERD. My symptoms for GERD were acid back-up and a ‘lump’ in my throat but no heartburn. (I was originally sent to an ENT because of my irritated throat and mild hoarseness) The ENT said it was GERD instead so my PCP had given me samples of Prevacid which worked well. But when it came time to filling the script the insurance company said I had to try Prilosec first.

After suffering for a couple of months of using Prilosec, they approved the Prevacid. I began with 1 30mg tab a day. After about 5 or so years it started to become less effective so I was upped to 30mg twice a day.

I lost my job in 2010 and my extended insurance 6 months ago. I had to buy my Prevacid over the counter which was costing me 20$ a week. Needless to say I could not afford that.

I was put onto straight Medicaid and they wouldn't approved the Prevacid so the doctor prescribed Nexium. The Nexium worked awesome! But the following month my straight Medicaid was changed to a Medicaid health plan and they wouldn't approve Nexium or Prevacid. cry They said I had to go back to the trial period of omeprazole (Which I didn't know was the generic of Prilosec [which makes sense to me now why trying it was futile]) for 90 days before they would approve the Prevacid.

45 days into a treatment that doesn't work I am miserable, now it’s not only the lump back, it’s nausea too. I called the doctor back and begged for help because I couldn't bear to go another 45 days of suffering.

She sent me for an endoscopy with a GI. I had it done a week ago and was diagnosed with Barretts. (It makes sense now why I didn’t have heartburn pain anymore because of the tissue change of the barretts) I talked with my PCP today and with the diagnosis she said I should be able to get an approval. She said we’ll try to get approved for Protonix since the Prevacid was starting to lose its efficiency as well.

I don’t understand why most everyone is hell bent to get off of PPIs. It seems like most are taking a grocery list of supplements and concoctions as opposed to 1 medication.

In my opinion just because items say they are ‘natural’ doesn’t necessarily make them any safer.

Don’t get me wrong. I’d love to not have to take a bunch of medicines; however, i feel that taking a crap load of ‘natural’ items is just as bad and expensive too. (and in my case, insurances don’t cover OTC supplements.) It’s also hard/next to impossible to get foods that are good for you when you don’t have the money. Because unfortunately let’s face it… The food that’s unhealthy is much cheaper than the alternative. cry

Thanks for reading.

I welcome any feedback. turn

Osteoarthritis since teens, mild bi-polar, GERD, Just diagnosed with Barrett's Syndrome

Elite Member

Date Joined Jul 2009
Total Posts : 14475
   Posted 7/16/2012 9:05 PM (GMT -6)   
Have you discussed having the surgery with your doctor yet?

New Member

Date Joined Jul 2012
Total Posts : 4
   Posted 7/16/2012 11:08 PM (GMT -6)   

I'm waiting for the GI's official letter of results for the EGD. The PCP has the information from it though. So far I've only talked with my PCP's office about the medication issue.

I hadn't seen that GI before the test. My PCP is new as of April 2012. Had to switch from my PCP of 15 years because of stupid insurance reasons... cry
43yr old with Osteoarthritis since teens, GERD, Just diagnosed with Barrett's Syndrome

Regular Member

Date Joined Jun 2012
Total Posts : 32
   Posted 7/17/2012 6:04 AM (GMT -6)   
Please do discuss the degree of Barretts (without, low or high dysplasia) with your GI. Without and low grades are not that bad. Also length of barretts.
Hopefully GI doc will be able to give you more information.

Forum Moderator

Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 7188
   Posted 7/17/2012 3:18 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi gabbi,
I'm glad you've joined the forum.  I can see you've already met some great members!  I agree with your opinion on "natural" remedies.  Long ago I heard an expert saying, "what do you think is in drugs?", when debating the "natural" vs medication issue.  Many medications have been extracted from plants, and herbal remedies can be just as potent, and far less regulated.
If you can get a PPI that works for you via your insurance, by all means, take it!  Some here don't have the choice of taking PPIs because they cause side effects for them.  I'm fortunate in that I didn't get any debilitating side effects from PPIs.  It is true that many alternative remedies are extremely expensive to maintain and are not covered by insurance.
Many take PPIs for extended periods of time and find them sufficient to control their GERD.  I'm sure you'll continue to be followed by your doctor, so as long as the meds are doing their job and allowing your esophagus to heal, you're in business!
Good luck and happy healing!
Words of wisdom by Eckhart Tolle:
"Whatever you fight, you strengthen, and what you resist, persists.”

“Worry pretends to be necessary but serves no useful purpose”

“Accept - then act. Whatever the present moment contains, accept it as if you had chosen it. Always work with it, not against it.”
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