New Member - LPR history and my journey to recovery (hopefully) - 36 y/o female

New Topic Post Reply Printable Version
41 posts in this thread.
Viewing Page :
 1  2 
[ << Previous Thread | Next Thread >> ]

Angela75
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2012
Total Posts : 29
   Posted 7/30/2012 6:52 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi, All. I am new to this forum and thought that I would use this as a way to document my journey with LPR and the treatments I am trying. I would love to hear your thoughts and comments. I will try to update this every week with new information on my progress and/or setbacks.

History: I was diagnosed with LPR last October following some stressful family drama. I went to my ENT with the common lump in the throat feeling. She scoped me and diagnosed me with LPR because of my red and inflamed vocal chords and voice box. She put me on 40mg of Omeprazole and handed me a brochure on the do's and don'ts of the disease and sent me on my way. Three months later, I wasn't following any of the recommended dietary changes and the lump still hadn't gone away. I went back and she upped my dose to 80mg per day. She said that if i didn't improve within a couple of months on the higher dose that I would need to see a gastroenterologist to get an endoscopy done. I am a HUGE baby when it comes to medical procedures so I never went back to her even though I wasn't improving.

A few months ago, I decided enough was enough and I needed to do something to improve my condition. I ordered Dr. Koufman's Dropping Acid Cookbook and Cure and started perusing it, but I didn't like what it said. I'm Italian, so garlic runs through my blood. Tomato sauce is served at every Sunday meal along with heaps of crushed red pepper. Cheese is my best friend and I love my red wine. Needless to say, the book went right where it belonged... on the bookshelf never to be opened again - until last month. My symptoms kept getting worse and new ones were popping up. I started getting horrific post nasal drip, I was always clearing my throat, I developed a minor cough and I started getting a disgusting taste in my mouth that wouldn't go away. So a few weeks ago, I pulled the book down from the shelf, dusted it off and started to follow the recommendations.

For the last three weeks, I haven't eaten anything under a Ph 5. She recommends doing this for 2 weeks and then adding in foods that are Ph 4 and higher. I want to give my throat a chance to heal before I do this. I have cheated twice - i've had two martinis. I can't give up EVERYTHING just yet. I am also a smoker (I know, i know - boo hiss) but I have cut down to between 6 and 7 cigarettes a day. Once I get this diet thing down, I will quit smoking. I am hoping late August or early September.... baby steps.

Along with the low acid diet, I am doing the following:

- 40mg of Omeprazole 2x day
- DGL Licorice with every meal - sometimes I take it before my meal, sometimes after. It tastes DISGUSTING and leaves a film in your mouth for a while after you eat it. So if I take it before, sometimes it ruins the taste of the already bland food.
- Digestive Enzymes with every meal
- Probiotics twice a day
- I am only drinking Evamor water (Ph 8.8) and chamomile tea
- I have ordered Gaviscon Advance from the UK and am waiting for it to come in
- I have cut down on my salt intake

So far, I have had good days and bad. I definitely notice that there is a decrease in the mucus in my throat and the post nasal drip. The lump hasn't gone away completely but most days it is just a tightness in my throat. On the days that I still feel the lump, that's when I get the awful taste in my mouth. So, I would say I *think* I'm improving but only time will tell.

I want to try to get off the PPIs in September. I am going to try to taper down slowly. If anyone has suggestions on how to do that, please share them with me :)

Here are the reasons why I think my LPR started:

1. I smoke
2. Up until a few weeks ago, I used to eat a LOT of salt. When I say a lot, i don't mean a sprinkle here and there on food... I mean A LOT of salt. My blood pressure has always been really low (90/60) so i think I craved salt so much so my BP didn't dip down below that to really dangerous levels. I have read that salt doesn't cause acid reflux in people who already have it, but that you are more likely to develop reflux if you had/have a high sodium diet. It really doesn't make sense to me, but I've cut down on my salt nevertheless.
3. My third addiction was spicy foods. The hotter it was, the better. And if it was coated in a layer of salt, even better still!
4. At the beginning of last year, I started to sleep on my stomach a lot. I had never done that in the past, but for some reason that's the only sleeping position I could get comfortable in. I don't know if there is a connection but now I'm trying to only sleep on my back or side.

Well, that's it for now. Like I said, I will try to update my progress (or lack thereof) weekly. Please post if you have any suggestions on what I should be adding in or taking out of my diet.... Or if you have any questions... or a good joke to share... or for whatever reason at all ;-)

Angela75
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2012
Total Posts : 29
   Posted 8/2/2012 2:48 PM (GMT -6)   
For those of you that suffer with LPR and have the lump in your throat symptom, can you please answer the following question:

When you wake up in the morning does the lump feel better, worse or about the same as it did before you went to bed the night before?

Mine always, always, always feels better in the morning.... practically nonexistent. But, that only lasts about 2 hours after waking up and then it gradually comes back throughout the day.

I would love to hear what other people have to say about this, so please answer if you can.

Thanks!

fireworks
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2012
Total Posts : 178
   Posted 8/3/2012 9:09 AM (GMT -6)   
lump in the throat do u mean the lump of mucus?

mine is better in the morning when i woke up, probably due to cold air in the aircon room and later all hell break loose and i have to cough out no matter how hard that crap is to feel better. It is sticky mucus.

I hate this crap.

phil-uk
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2012
Total Posts : 190
   Posted 8/3/2012 11:47 AM (GMT -6)   
angela 75 said "...When you wake up in the morning does the lump feel better, worse or about the same as it did before you went to bed the night before?..."
My problems are the same. The lump in my throat gets worse during the day.

Interestingly I have started the broad principles to reduce LPR in Koufmans' book, about the same time as you. I have already been 'scoped and await the results of the biopsy. There is a possibility I have Barrets, although that has yet to be confirmed.

I gave up my PPI for some months and now wish I had kept taking them. I think anyone thinking of giving up prescription medicine should always consult their PCP/GP and make themselves aware of the risk.

Angela75
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2012
Total Posts : 29
   Posted 8/3/2012 12:25 PM (GMT -6)   
fireworks - I am talking about the lump that feels like you have something stuck in your throat. Like a vitamin, or a softball. Whenever I wake up, i don't have the lump sensation (the mucus is always there, although less than what it was before) but that lump sensation is gone in the morning, but then slowly creeps in throughout the day :(

phil-uk - do you think it could be spasms that we are experiencing? Or stress? We are relaxed when we are asleep and aren't thinking about every day things to stress us out. When we wake up, we have been free of stress (and eating) for 6+ hours and feel good but then as the stress builds and thinking about LPR consumes our brain, so does the lump. I am going to a new doctor at the end of this month. She specializes in alternative medicines, although she is an MD, and am going to get her opinions.

How has the Koufman diet been working for you? I am bored out of my mind and eating is now a chore instead of enjoyable... but if it helps, I'd rather be bored with my food then enjoy it I guess.

phil-uk
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2012
Total Posts : 190
   Posted 8/3/2012 5:18 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Angela, it's worth reading the posts from the poster called 'justpassingthrough'. There is someone who I think has suffered from our symptoms and has taken his/her situation and doggedly addressed the issues.

There is a thread to read by jpt called 'Going for LINX tomorrow'.

The LPR could be related to stress, but for me I tend to think of it as atypical gerd, with the main cause being the physical reflux of stomach contents, [ie acid, pepsin, food, drink etc, there could even be some bile if your really unlucky.] due to a weak LES. The reason that the mornings are less symptomatic could be to do with the fact that we wake up before breakfast with empty stomachs so have had a break from reflux. I find that by about 4am I can often dispense with my wedge pillow and sleep flat.

The diet was going well with reduced symptoms [for nearly 3 weeks] up until 2 days ago when friends came to stay and I had some wine. I am looking at eating some calcium tablets to reduce acidity of wine so that I don't have to give up everything! I dont have an acidity tester yet, but think it will be useful.

phil

Angela75
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2012
Total Posts : 29
   Posted 8/3/2012 6:19 PM (GMT -6)   
Phil, Thanks for the reading suggestion. I will look up the threads. I am really, really opposed to surgery. That will be my last and final resort.

It is so hard to stick to the no alcohol rule. I am NOT a big drinker by any means, maybe two to three drinks every month but it seems like as soon as I started the diet, there were parties to attend and birthday dinner invites and it is so hard not to drink on these occasions. I ordered some coffee tamer online http://www.calciblend.com/ I hope you can see the link. Supposedly, you can add it to any drink and it will cut down the acidity. I have it, but haven't tried it yet. I will try it this weekend and let you know how it goes :)

Angela75
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2012
Total Posts : 29
   Posted 8/7/2012 8:06 PM (GMT -6)   
Phil, I just wanted to let you know that I tried the coffee tamer in my martini this past weekend. It turned it cloudy - so much so that I couldn't see the olives in it, but it cut down on the "bite" and the next day I felt fine :)

ericapeace2000
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2012
Total Posts : 1110
   Posted 8/7/2012 10:31 PM (GMT -6)   
I haven't drank in a while but I have a ph meter and have found vanilla rum and water is neutral ( if u have neutral water). It is still alcohol and will relax the LES but at least it isn't acidic.
Diagnosed GERD, no other medical conditions (this one is enough)

Angela75
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2012
Total Posts : 29
   Posted 8/7/2012 10:41 PM (GMT -6)   
Thank you, Ericapeace!

I just ordered a meter on Ebay. It's not super fancy, but at least it's more than I had before ;)

ericapeace2000
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2012
Total Posts : 1110
   Posted 8/8/2012 7:57 AM (GMT -6)   
Mine isn't fancy either but has been helpful. You have to clean it with a special chemical, I forget what it is called, but I will look when I get home.
Diagnosed GERD, no other medical conditions (this one is enough)

Angela75
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2012
Total Posts : 29
   Posted 8/8/2012 1:48 PM (GMT -6)   
Since it's been a week since my first post, I thought I would post an update:

Basically, everything is the same :( Again, good days and bad days. When I have a REALLY good day (no lump, decrease in mucus in my throat, and no bad taste) I think that i've turned the corner and am definitely on the road to recovery but then BAM the next day sucks :( It's like the universe is playing some cruel joke on all of us. I have not deviated from the plan at all over the last 7 days (except for 1 martini on Saturday night) but it seems like my throat is a bit worse than it was when I posted last time. The only thing that I added in was 1 tbsp of vinaigrette because the Dropping Acid cookbook says that you can have 1 tbsp/day. I had some last night on a low acid pasta salad that I made and some the day before on a regular green salad. Maybe that's why my throat hates me today. I'm not sure :(

I just ordered "Great Taste No Pain" It's a less restricted diet than the low acid one that Koufman suggests, but it's all about the combinations of food that you eat. I am getting pretty freaking bored with Dr. K's "approved" list and since it doesn't really seem to be working, i thought i would give this other diet a shot for a week or two. If it makes me feel worse, than I'll go back to the Koufman diet. If it makes me feel better, I will throw myself a party ;p

FLY135
New Member


Date Joined Aug 2012
Total Posts : 10
   Posted 8/8/2012 3:13 PM (GMT -6)   
I don't have LPR, but I have a hiatal hernia and GERD diagnosed 20 years ago. After 20 years of taking PPIs and OTC heartburn drugs, I found that drinking aloe juice was far more effective and eliminated my need for drugs.

I've posted my experience with aloe juice in several threads here. It may or may not work for you but at $8 for a gallon of Fruit of the Earth aloe juice, it's worth a try. I get mine at a local grocery store (Publix), but Wal-Mart lists it on their website. It tastes awful, but you don't need much and should expect noticeable results within a few days or a week of drinking a couple small cups (4-6oz) of it per day.

Just use it in addition to everything else. If it works you may find that you can keep your Italian meals with no change. I have an orange tree that produces from dec to mar, and this year was the first time I've been able to consume it all in orange juice. Before on drugs I would get bad heartburn drinking more than a small amount. BTW, spicy foods are not necessarily a trigger for heartburn like acidic foods.

Angela75
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2012
Total Posts : 29
   Posted 8/8/2012 5:17 PM (GMT -6)   
Thank you, Fly135! I've seen your other posts about it and thought about trying it. Maybe I will drink the aloe vera juice when I take the DGL licorice so i can get all of the bad tasting stuff out of the way at one time :)

Right now, I can't eat any spicy foods until my vocal chords and voice box heal. Anything that's even mildly spicy irritates my throat. BUT, as soon as i can get it to heal, that will be one of the first things that I try to eat!!

dany1982
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2012
Total Posts : 158
   Posted 8/8/2012 6:01 PM (GMT -6)   
angela75,
I would be careful trying any aloe vera that has citric acid in it. I tried the juice and the gel and both had citric acid and burned bad when they went down on my esophagus and into my stomach.

Angela75
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2012
Total Posts : 29
   Posted 8/8/2012 8:44 PM (GMT -6)   
Dany1982 - Thank you for letting me know. I will watch out for that when I'm looking for one to try!

ericapeace2000
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2012
Total Posts : 1110
   Posted 8/8/2012 10:13 PM (GMT -6)   
George's aloe Vera tastes like water it's been purified to only contain the aloe. Check it out on amazon. It helps as an adjunct for me, diet is the most helpful. Because today's wheat is hard to digest and mire acid is needed to break it down, I'm on a gluten free diet that is also low fat, low acid, lower carb and low sugar. It has taken some time but it is working.
Diagnosed GERD, no other medical conditions (this one is enough)

Angela75
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2012
Total Posts : 29
   Posted 8/9/2012 8:20 AM (GMT -6)   
Ericapeace, Thank you! I will look into that brand on Amazon.

How long have you been on the gluten free diet? Do you still eat things like tomatoes and onions - since they are gluten free but known to cause reflux? Since I ordered the Great Taste No Pain diet books, I've been doing more and more research on food combining and it seems logical to me... She provides a free 4-day plan to try to see if it works. I might try it in the next few weeks to see if I feel any different than I do now. I'm going on vacation in a couple of weeks, and I'm afraid it's going to be really hard to stick to any kind of diet while I'm there :(

ericapeace2000
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2012
Total Posts : 1110
   Posted 8/9/2012 11:16 AM (GMT -6)   
I am off tomatoes and onions as I know these are bad foods for reflux. My diet is a combination of gluten free and acid reflux diet (low acid, low fat, low carb, low sugar). If I want something carb related (and not everyday), I make sure it is gluten free. For example, I am able to tolerate brown rice, so I have gluten free marshmellow bars for a treat, gluten free brown rice pasta for a meal (with olive oil and salt, sometimes a pinch of some fat free cheese) or gluten free brown rice chips for a snack. Most of the time I am eating lean protein, vegetables and frutis that are non acidic, almonds, red protatoes. I eat organic also and chew gum constantly. I am also taking papaya enzymes, B12, vitamin D, magnesium, omega 3 fish oil, and Nexium 40mg. The other night my husband made a gluten free and dairy free cake(we used almond milk)  for my mom's birthday (so I could have some) and i was fine. I had a small slice, if I had eaten half the cake I am sure I would not be fine! I also sleep with a bed wedge and do not eat past 7pm.
 
I went on my honeymoon and was able to stay on the diet. It was hard and awkward at times. I had to talk to the waiters to make sure they prepared my dinenrs without seasoning or sauces and I mostly ate fruit for breakfast, fruit, lean protein and a potatoe for lunch or a salad, and a lean protein with vegetables like carrots and broccoli for dinners. You have to get creative. I will use honey as a maranade and put it on chicken or turkey and then crush some almonds up and coat it in that and bake it. Pretty good. You get used to it. I went from a size 6/8 to a size 2. I am probably healthier than most people I know who are eating whatever and drinking whatever.

Angela75
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2012
Total Posts : 29
   Posted 8/11/2012 6:15 PM (GMT -6)   
I was at the store today and they had George's Aloe Vera there! I bought the smaller bottle to try it out. Definitely, not what I was expecting. It really does taste like water - makes me worry that they extract the stuff out that's going to help us and just leave the water behind ;p

fireworks
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2012
Total Posts : 178
   Posted 8/11/2012 7:00 PM (GMT -6)   
Erica, you should have made a full recovery going on such a strict diet!

ericapeace2000
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2012
Total Posts : 1110
   Posted 8/11/2012 8:37 PM (GMT -6)   
Fireworks: I'm slowly improving. Lump in throat disappeared a few months ago, esophageal spasms have gone (thank god) recently the chest pains have subsided to very mild or non existent. Right now the symptom that us still bothersome is upper stomach pain. It comes and goes. It has taken me 5 months to improve. It may take several more months to get it under control. I have discovered new food and I've found some substitutes for my favorites. I miss having a few drinks on the weekend, it has been 4 months since I had a sip of alcohol. I'm hoping every so often I can have the rum and water ( 1 drink) once everything is under control. I should be feeling great but I guess my type of reflux is temperamental. I have mild esophagitis ( which could be better as that was done before I did this diet) so I'm thinking I probably have NERD which is harder to control.
Diagnosed GERD, no other medical conditions (this one is enough)

Angela75
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2012
Total Posts : 29
   Posted 8/12/2012 8:40 AM (GMT -6)   
Erica, that is great! How long have you been doing the special diet? What was your diet like before developing GERD/NERD?

I am getting discouraged because I feel like I have been doing this for sooooooo long, but it's only been a month since I started the low acid diet and really the only one thing that I can pinpoint that caused my problems was that I'm a smoker and my salt consumption. Granted, I did enjoy spicy foods, and more italian tomato based dishes but I've never really over-indulged in any of it except for salt. I have always had VERY low blood pressure and i think that's why I craved salt all the time. I had no idea that it could cause Acid Reflux. None of my doctors ever told me it could - all that I was ever told was to switch to sea salt because it was better than eating a lot of regular table salt. But I started researching and found a few articles that stated that someone who has a diet high in sodium, has the same chance of developing acid reflux as someone who smokes. So, i guess I hit myself with a double whammy :( I have no idea if the study is valid but I've been trying to really cut down on my salt consumption. I have no idea if it is helping, and it makes me sad because my already bland food is even blander now but if it is going to help me then I'm going to make a valiant effort to try!

fireworks
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2012
Total Posts : 178
   Posted 8/12/2012 10:04 AM (GMT -6)   
I'm not sure about salt consumption but pior to GERD, i've always been a fast food person, and like you I love my cheese and my wine, and I love pastries.. I'm aware of my unhealthy eating habits but i did nothing till I had GERD. So this is kinda like a wake-up call for me to take charge of my own health.

Diet is most important in the road to recovery. And happy mood plays a very important factor. Strictly no deep fried, oily or hard to digest food. Strictly no buffets (big meals) and no beer. The reason why mucus in throat happens is due to post nasal drip due to acid reflux. When reflux into the throat, it affects the ENT.. some reflux can get into your ears, leading to ear infection.. go into nose, will lead to PSD or leading to throat throat inflammation. PSD if not treated can lead to sinus. PSD is the result of inflammation of the nasal.. and mucus will backflow into your throat, causing the mucus, throat clearing. And then when you keep clearing your throat for sometime, it affects your throat largyx to be swollen. So there you see, its all connected. Vicious cycle.

I'm currently taking TCM and accupunture for my PSD. Then I'll move on to TCM for healing the GERD. I'm currently on PPI every night and just started Gaviscon.

Do you all have problems with milk + cereal? Seems like many of you are avoiding milk?

fireworks
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2012
Total Posts : 178
   Posted 8/12/2012 10:07 AM (GMT -6)   
With this GERD, im slipping in and out of depression for quite sometime. My mind is weak so I started praying.

I realised being happy helps in recovery. GERD feeds on depression.
New Topic Post Reply Printable Version
41 posts in this thread.
Viewing Page :
 1  2 
Forum Information
Currently it is Monday, September 24, 2018 12:31 PM (GMT -6)
There are a total of 3,006,090 posts in 329,301 threads.
View Active Threads


Who's Online
This forum has 161823 registered members. Please welcome our newest member, Eclipse900.
283 Guest(s), 13 Registered Member(s) are currently online.  Details
Youngguy90, JayMot, HeartsinPain, GoBucks, tickbite666, Boston221, Admin, Girlie, Pontiacwild, Normal59, k07, Worried Guy, Fresh