Sorry if this is long. I always seem to have too much information to spill out. If you can believe it, this is actually the condensed version.about me:
27 male, probably 10 pounds overweight, don't drink, don't smoke. Previously very poor diet (lots of fast food, soda and sweet tea) up until about
a year ago, but my acid reflux has always seemed to occur independent of what I eat.
Have had acid reflux on and off since I was about
15. Used to take omeprazole on and off. Later lansoprazole and at one point Zantac.When it started getting bad:
Started getting really painful about
4-6 months ago. Got Protonix at the ER after clean EKG and chest x-rays confirmed it wasn't a heart attack (was concerned because it felt different that night). Went to a gastroenterologist and switched to 60mg Dexilant.What's happening now:
Shortly after I got on stronger PPIs it switched from serious pain to mostly mild to severe discomfort. Insane amount of burping (something always associated with my heartburn), frequent food backing up into my mouth (often not painful, just annoying). Just about
every day now, to varying degrees.
Besides that, my stomach is often growling, I get the impression I sometimes have trouble digesting food, and trouble with bowel movements (I don't think it lasts long enough to be real constipation, but it can be an irritating several hours).
All these symptoms often occur even on light and empty stomachs and can last all day long.What I've done for lifestyle changes:
six months before this started I started exercising (lost about
20 pounds), started drinking nothing but water and seriously cleaned up my diet. When it started getting bad, I made extra effort to avoid the bad foods and eat in smaller portions. Didn't seem to help.What else I've tried:
apple cider vinegar and probiotics. Also, antacids like Alka Seltzer, Tums, Pepto Bismol, others, do not nor have they ever really provided any relief whatsoever.Other:
I'm trying to find a new gastroenterologist, because mine always seems to be in a rush and never wants to listen or explain anything. She also recommended an endoscopy after barely talking to me, which I would be quicker to go through with anyway if I wasn't a broke college student with a $2000 insurance deductible.
I'm trying to explore other options in the meantime, especially because it's starting to get worse again. Is it possible on the strong PPIs my stomach is now not producing enough acid, as I seem to read about
so much online? That seems like it might fit with the non-painful (well, sometimes) regurgitation and the lack of antacids being at all effective, but I'm not sure.
I'm honestly afraid to stop taking my Dexilant to test that theory without trying to get more information related to my specific case, but every doctor I've been to has always tried to sidestep that question like they can't answer it or don't know.