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New Member

Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 19
   Posted 4/26/2007 3:56 PM (GMT -6)   
Hello, I am new to this forum.  But in the time that I have found it, I have read so much great information. 
Here it goes, I dont think I have been able to completely tell this story to anyone who could make heads or tails of it, including Doctors.....I have had been living a nightmare for about a year now.  At first, I thought I had lung cancer since I was a smoker for nearly 15 years.  I was having sharp shooting pains across my chest and right below my sternum. Sometimes eminating to my shoulders. That was my first symptoms.  It caused me to sweat a lot and the anxiety of it was driving me crazy. I was all over the internet and webmd trying to figure out if I had Lung Cancer or not.  I was terrified.
I am going to rewind just a bit and go back about 2 months prior to the first symptoms above.  I was sitting at work and had a HUGE case of hearburn. And I mean huge, I had to stop working and bend over and my face turned beet red until it subsided. After that no other symptoms occured until the shooting chest pains months later. 
Soon after the chest pains started, I went to the ER to get checked out.  They did the usual Chest Pain MO (Chest x-ray, EKG etc...)  All were negative.  The doctor pressed on my chest hard enough to make a small amount of discomfort and asked me if it hurt.  I said a bit, and he diagnosed me with Costocondritus.  I then went to my primary doctor and she did the same and came out with either GERD or Costocondritus.  She decided to prescribe me 800 mg Ibprofen 4 times a day.  I did this for about 2 to 3 weeks with no relief.  I noticed that smoking made the chest pain much much worse and more frequent.  I still couldnt believe that I didnt have cancer or some lung disease so I QUIT SMOKING COLD TURKEY. (The ONLY good thing to come out of all of this lol)  I have been smoke free since September 15th of 2006=)
Ok, so since I started to realize by endless research how bad Ibprofen was for my stomach and how it could cause ulcers I stopped taking them and started asking my PP about possible Ulcers or Gastric problems.  (she didnt get back to me for a week) and then she told me that I should take Prilosec OTC and see how it goes.  I did, but at the same time I switched to a better Doctor lol.
The prilosec did not help, but my symptoms seem to change.  I stopped having the sharp shooting pains in my chest, and it became more of a nawing pain, with periods of bloating, and a terrible amount of gas.  I started seeing a GI doctor. When I came to his office I was sweating and in my usual amount of pain.  He had me do an MRI, CT Scan, and Ultra Sound to relieve my cancer axiety.  It worked lol.  I dont have cancer.  But the pain is still there.  He did an endoscopy and found two very small ulcers in the upper part of my stomach and a small amount of esophagitus.   He still has not completely diagnosed my.  When I see him he sort of dances around the question of what is my diagnosis with words like GERD, Non Ulcerative ERD, and Esophagitus.  But has never acutally told me "You have GERD".
The endoscopy test came up negative for cancer and H. Pylori.  A stool test has come up negative for H. Pylori.  Byt the way, during this year of pain I have noticed that my stool has constistantly and regularly been dark grayish/green in color.  Especially when it is a bad chest and stomach pain day.  Thats way I made him do a stool test.  Again all negative.
I am convinced that this is bacterial btw.  When this all first started, before I switched PPs I ttok the left overs of a bottle of anti-biotics.  There were only 7 pills in the jar but I took one a day for 7 days.  After the first day of taking just one Omoxicillin pill I felt NO PAIN.  Then for two weeks the pain was gone.  And came back.
I still believe that I have a bacterial infection somewhere.  I am getting a second GI opinion set for May 29th.  I also have a Urea Breath test set up for the 11th.
Thoughts?  Comments?  ALL are appreciated.  Currently my GI doctor has me on 2 Nexium per day by the way.  I have been on PPIs for about 8 months now.  I still feel horrible for the most part.
All comments on my story are MUCH apprecited!
Thank you all in advance.

New Member

Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 19
   Posted 4/26/2007 4:05 PM (GMT -6)   
Oh btw, I have a swollen throat now too (at least this week) I also forgot to mention that they have found a nodule ion my thyroid that they are checking out. i had a fine needle aspiration a week ago and I am awaiting results. Could the Thyroid problem be connected to my pains? Also, just to put this out there, I almost NEVER have actuall heartburn. I have bloated stomach even after small meals lately, nawing chest pain right under my sternum now. I do not feel a BURNING feeling in my esophagus. Although I do feel like there are bubbles rising in my throught sometimes.

Just figured I woudl throw that out there.

porcelain doll
Regular Member

Date Joined Mar 2007
Total Posts : 128
   Posted 4/26/2007 8:10 PM (GMT -6)   

Dear Hamhoc...It sure looks like you've been through alot.  You could have gerd and not have heartburn which I believe is referred to as "silent reflux."  Gerd can affect people in so many different ways and chest pain is synonymous with Gerd as is throwing up.  For example, some people throw up (which I never did) but when my reflux has been at its worse I literally could feel the acid rising up toward my throat as I wanted to choke (that in itself would send me into panic mode) and the chest pain was unreal.  I would say for almost two months I couldn't eat very much and could feel the acid rising (an awful sensation).  Also with you having throat problems you might want to research "LPR" that is also Gerd related. 

As far as the bacterial infection goes it is hard to say since you had all of the test come back negative.  Could the 7 day Amoxicillin pills just be a coincidence that you felt better?  Many people believe in using probiotics (capsules that are loaded with billions of good bacteria and supposedly help with digestive problems).  Some people also use digestive enzymes to help break up food.  I asked my Gastro Dr. about these different alternatives and he said "no comment." These two products are purchased in a health store and there is lots of information about them on the net.  I hope that when I am finally able to get off of these PPIs I am going to try the probiotics and enzymes and take it from there.  I wish I had answers for you.....

New Member

Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 19
   Posted 4/27/2007 7:30 AM (GMT -6)   
I have to say, it is so great to find this forum for me. I feel like I am not alone now. Yesterday I went out and got DGL Licorice. It doesnt taste very good, but I 'think" it helped. I had a good day yesterday and today seems to be ok so far.

I have been also drinking some Apple Cider Vinagar with some water. I am honestly not sure if either of these helps but anything is worth a try. One thing I am definitely going to do is lose some weight. I am not extremely over weight, but I can stand to lose a few pounds in the mid section. I have been doing 45 mins of cardio at the gym twice a week. I will now wrench it up to 4 times per week with some lifting mixed in. My goal will be to lose 20 pounds. I have also heard that broccili sprouts (what ever those are lol) help to kill H. Pylori if you have it. Anyone know if this is true?

I also forgot to mention that sometimes after I eat I seem to regurgitate. Food just doesnt go all the way down to my stomach it seems. This is the symptom which I feel almost defines GERD. Am I right?
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