I have been diagnosed with GERD and Eosinophilic Esophagitis for 4 years now. I have had it for much longer though, just undiagnosed. I have had this constant itch in my throat for as long as I can remember, which either required me to cough or swallow or breath deeply every 3-6 seconds. If I dont cough or swallow every couple seconds, my brain sends a signal that says "Im choking," which obviously isnt true. Either way, I have to continuously swallow or cough. No doctor can explain the cause or name of this. Instead they purely focus on treating GERD or EE as best they can. Unfortunately, medications have not worked for me and there are no other treatments for GERD other than medications and surgery.
When I ask a doctor what exactly is wrong with my throat, the answer is usually along the lines of "I dont know, but you should see another doctor." GIs recommend me to see ENTs. ENTs recommend me to see pulminologists, the list is endless. I have seen some 40 or so doctors the last couple years and none of them can acknowledge the number one symptom I have which is exercise induced reflux. It is not acknowledged, and there is no specific treatment for it.
I recently met with a new GI and have stressed that I want to actually consider the surgery and that will eventually lead to more tests. I have already had a pH probe and several endoscopies but they want me to redo both of them because it has been 2 years since my last one. I will redo these two tests and then get two others before I can know if I am a candidate for the surgery or not. Between now and whatever month I might start considering surgery, what else can I do?
I am currently 18 and was diagnosed when I was 14. Through all of this I have decided that I want to devote my life to medical research towards GERD because I am tired of how few treatment options there are for the millions of people that face reflux pains everyday. I am currently a freshman studying biomedical engineering but someday I will be working towards more treatment options as an engineer.