3 months after nissen - gas bloat, especially for ld runner

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New Member

Date Joined Jun 2014
Total Posts : 16
   Posted 9/2/2014 5:20 PM (GMT -6)   
I had a full nissen wrap performed 3 months ago - the first week was perfect, however after this I started to experience chest pains, which increased to then back pains, shortness of breath and general uncomfortable bloating. This has not seemed to decrease over time. My doctor feels that the pain is due to gas bloat syndrome - and says that there is not much that can be done and that it can take months to disappear. I was wondering if anyone had experienced similar pains, and if so if they resolved and how long this took?

Ldrunner - I see you had similar problems long into recovery, and was wondering how long this took to get any better?

I am 22, and currently unable to function at the moment. The pain is worse than my original problem, and I want my life back!

Any help with this would be much appreciated!!

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Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 7180
   Posted 9/2/2014 8:28 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi applejacks,

When I saw my surgeon on Day 6 post-op, he informed me that my wrap would become increasingly more swollen over time, peaking at approximately two weeks or so, with some variation. This swelling generally begins going down at some point after it peaks. How fast the swelling reduction occurs, is an individual and unique experience. Every body heals in its own sweet time.

I assume you can't burp at all, so whatever you're eating that produces gas can't escape out the hatch, but must wait until it goes through your whole digestive tract, and that's not fast enough to avoid painful bloating.

The wrap creates a flap that covers the entrance of the esophagus, to keep stomach contents where it belongs. Very often, the wrap will be able to open enough to let some of the excess gas out, which helps protect from paintful bloating. Swelling can interfere with this. (I expect that your GI doc is waiting for the swelling to subside.) Also, a tight wrap can relax a bit with time...making it easier for air to escape. When your stomach gets too full with food/liquid/gas, it presses against the wrap/flap, and won't allow the escape of gas. The result is painful bloat.

I assume with your bloating issues you're remembering to stay away from gassy foods. Each person's trigger foods are unique. Some people can eat one thing without a problem, while that same food can trigger terrible gas in another. Here's a list of possible gas producing foods I found online. When I read it, I wondered what it left for us to eat?!! I would think it would be trial and error.
Milk and dairy products
Starchy foods like potatoes and pasta
Wheat and oat bran
Foods sweetened with artificial sweeteners, such as soda, gum, and hard candy
Bananas, peaches, apricots, pears, and raw apples
Raisins and melons
Prunes and prune juice
Colas and fruit drinks sweetened with fructose
Beans and lentils
Onions, green peppers, shallots, and scallions
Cauliflower, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, and peas
Corn, celery, artichokes, asparagus, and carrots

Of course, carbonated beverages and straws are out. They both cause increased gas. I found BEANO (about three chewable tablets immediately before eating veggies that can cause gas) to be helpful. I used it a lot during my recovery, and only very occasionally now (5 and a half years post-op).

I know bloating is uncomfortable and can be painful as well. It is hard to wait for your body to heal enough to resolve your problem. I wish there was a shortcut to healing, but there isn't. It can be frustrating and hard to trust that you will ever overcome the problem, but you will! It's likely that it will be one of those quirks that takes it's time to go away, but go away it will.

Hang in there!
Best wishes,

GERD/Heartburn Moderator
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.”
Eckhart Tolle

New Member

Date Joined Jun 2014
Total Posts : 16
   Posted 9/3/2014 5:56 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi Denise,

Thank you so much for your helpful response - sometimes it can feel as if there is no light at the end of the tunnel, and it is good to receive advice from someone who has also been through it! The doctors know a lot, but can't understand what it is like to be in the patient's position all the time. I understand this needs more time to heal, however it can be very difficult and scary at times! I sometimes feel worse than before the surgery!

I actually weirdly can burp - I burp a lot lot more than before surgery - its actually rather antisocial! Is this also normal? They are always very small baby burps - I wondered if my body is trying and failing miserably to get the air out. I never burped before surgery - didn't even understand the concept.

I also have been experiencing the gas pain as pain in my chest more than anywhere else - like at my sternum - I was wondering if you experienced this? The tightness is so similar to reflux I am worried, but the surgeon says all pain in that area can be very similar.

I am in the UK, so we don't have beano here, but I will try ordering some to see if it helps! I am obeying dietary restrictions, but still getting almost permanent discomfort :( I actually can only eat really tiny amounts of food still which is really sad!

Thank you again for your reply!
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