New guy here. I’ve done some lurking for the past few weeks and I was wondering if I could get some help with my situation…
about three months ago I started having these episodes, which included: shortness of breath, slight dizziness, and lightheadedness – like I couldn’t focus my eyes or something along those lines. I also had this uncomfortable feeling in my chest that was alleviated by expelling gas. One day it was pretty bad and I went to urgent care… the doctor diagnosed me with GERD and told me that the shortness of breath episodes were potentially laryngospasms and to see an ENT, cut out the spicy foods (I always used to eat spicy foods prior to this), eat smaller meals, and cut out the misc. common trigger foods for GERD. He also puts me on omeprazole 20mg once a day.
I take the omeprazole, change my diet, and start feeling a little better, but I still occasionally got these episodes, so I go to the ENT and he sees some redness in my vocal chords, but nothing that warrants further testing. He said to finish my omeprazole and to go back to my normal diet… he said it was possibly a fluke thing.
He was wrong. I tried going back to my normal foods and finished the omeprazole… I felt like crap.
So I make an appointment with the GI doctor, get an upper endoscopy: nothing too bad. Some redness and he said my sphincter was a little weak, and my biopsy came back negative. So next we do an emptying study. I eat a peanut butter and jelly sandwich with a nuclear isotope and they monitor my digestion rate with an ultrasound over the course of digestion – my rate is just slightly above normal, but again, nothing that is worrying them. Up next is a 24 hour PH study which I’ll be getting done hopefully soon.
Between these visits, I had gone to urgent care a few times and they didn’t/couldn’t really do anything. I went to the ER once, same thing.
The reason I still feel this is GERD related is because I get these “episodes” about 90% of the time either during or after I eat a meal. Sometimes I get them at “random”, but most of the time it’s when or after I eat. I don’t get the conventional heartburn sensation. The shortness of breath/breathing difficulty is the #1 symptom, followed by the lightheadedness/inability to focus. Sometimes I get that chest discomfort that gets alleviated by burping, but that’s rare. Also, sometimes I have good days where I can eat larger portions and have a little more flexibility in my diet, and other days I eat a tiny portion and feel like absolute crap.
My primary doctor said I could have acid reflux that is coming up and “splashing” on my bronchial tubes, causing a spasm. I have asthma, so this could be a compounding thing.
I’m currently taking omeprazole once a day and ranitidine twice a day. Also, I feel like I have excess mucus production, so sometimes I take guaifenesin, which I feel helps. I have a chronic throat clearing problem, but that has been going on even before these symptoms. I went to urgent care on Thanksgiving as was prescribed Qvar to take along with my Albuterol for my asthma, as the shortness of breath could be related to a pulmonary thing as well. I have an appointment with a pulmonary doctor next month for testing.
Has ANYONE dealt with or heard about GERD causing symptoms like these? As you can see, I’ve been to several doctors, done several tests, but nobody has found anything definitive. Should I go back to my ENT and see if he sees anything else? I heard the 24 hour ph study should be able to tell me if it’s my stomach acid, as I can eat some trigger foods and really get myself going.
Thank you all in advance.