Anxiety and GERD

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New Member

Date Joined May 2007
Total Posts : 6
   Posted 5/29/2007 2:59 PM (GMT -6)   
Good Afternoon!
I am brand new in this forum and I am here to hopefully get some good input regarding my dilemma.
I have had GERD for about 5 years now.  I was diagnosed with mild inflammation on two different occasions.  I take Nexium with pretty good results.  I do have to be careful to stay away from fried foods, citric acid things, etc. 
When I have what I call a "Flare-up" - I then go into a major panic attack.  I can't eat much of anything without suffering major discomfort, e.g. thick in the throat, acid reflux, nausea, etc.  To be noted, it seems I can go a long time without a flare-up.  But, I usually experience a flare-up after a major negative event has taken place.  For instance.  I have been fine for some time now.  With that said, I have been the primary caregiver of my very ill mom for 5 years (I got GERD 6 months after she came to live with us).  Even though the last 5 years have been the most difficult years of my life, I have managed to take very good care of my mom.  Well, she passed away a few weeks ago.  I new she was dying and still I felt okay GERD wise. 
I came back to work a week later.  Two days after returning to work, my co-worker friend who sits next to me told me she had just been diagnosed with esophageal cancer, which had matastisized to her liver.  I felt so bad for her that I started to cry.  It made me sick inside.  Plus, I new I had nothing left to give her emotionally having just buried my mom.  I haven't been the same since she told me this.  Two days later I have the biggest flare-up of my GERD that you can imagine.
I believe my recent flare-up is the result of my mom's death (we were very close) and the info this woman share about her recent diagnosis.  I feel like I'm going to have the same diagnosis as this women, because I have GERD.
I feel like a basket case.  I went to my gastro doc and he said to take my Nexium twice a day among other things I already know.  The only thing that seems to help me is 0.5 mg. of Ativan that I have for occasional use (menopausal moments :)!
My flare-up began one week after my mom's death and the other woman's chat with me about her condition.  It has been two and half weeks since then and I still suffer and I am full of anxiety over it. 
Has anyone every connected the anxiety issues with the GERD?
I just need some encouragement and don't know where to find it.
Thanks to you and God Bless!

New Member

Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 8
   Posted 5/30/2007 2:26 PM (GMT -6)   

Hello, first off I am very sorry to hear about your mother and coworker.  My grandmother passed away in August of Esophageal cancer, it's not very pretty.  But anyways, I have had GERD for about 2 years and the pass two months I have been going thru lots of anxiety and depression and as you know that makes reflux 10 times worse.  My reflux is the silent reflux with occasional heartburn.  But anyways since having the anxiety it has been awful even to the point of it getting into my lungs, which sucks, I still cough from it some times.  Anyways I went to a holistic doc, after going to a GI and doing all the tests and all were normal.  Well the holistic doctor tried to treat it naturally and it just wasn't cutting it.  I have mitral valve prolapse syndrome and if you know anything about that sometimes the anxiety is horrible.  So I asked for ativan and tried it for a week I felt so good, I could even eat normally with feeling of food getting stuck and everything else.  But I stopped it cuz you know how they say it is so addictive.  Well I went back to my doc yesterday and he said if I felt good on the ativan then to stay on the ativan.  So now I am taking .5 mg 3 times a day. He told me to just take it and don't worry about getting hooked on it, because we can gradually wean off of it.  And Boy I tell you I feel like a normal person on it.  I ate at hardees today and no indigestion and no reflux, a little coughing but that was it.  Another thing that might help you is HCL tablets and digestive enzymes.  In most cases acid reflux is caused by too little acid, not too much.  I would stay away from that nexium unless you feel it is really helping you and you have too much acid, which might be the case.  But in your case I think the ativan will tremendously help. I've had to take it before for panic attacks about 3 years ago and it saved my life basically.  Well hope this has helped.  If you have any questions let me know.


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