I'm glad to hear that your worries have been relieved. That's what I figured was going on. It will take some time on the Pantoprazole before you start noticing improvement, but PPIs are very good at healing an inflamed esophagus, so you should start feeling better after a few weeks.
It's very common to take a 40mg dose once a day. It has been created to last a full 24 hours. That said, some people need a second 40mg dose in order to cover that entire time. Others supplement with Ranitidine (Zantac). Most people do well with one, though.
It is very important that you take the PPI properly. I discovered this great resource that tells you how it works and how to take it. PPIs need to be taken an hour before eating, and don't work as well if not followed by a high-protein meal.
Here's the link to the PPI information:
Since anxiety can definitely increase GERD/reflux symptoms, it's a great idea that you're being proactive and getting help right away! Good job of taking care of your self!
Nissen Fundoplication 2/09
"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.”