Acid Reflux/Gerd ?? Need help,... have questions (please)

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia and ME & Chronic Fatigue Syndrome' started by tandy, Dec 22, 2008.

  1. tandy

    tandy New Member

    Hi guys~
    I'm hoping for some help from you who also have reflux/gerd symptoms.
    I've posted several times on my upper stomach pain that no dr. can give me a real answer for. I was at one time thinking I had an ulcer or gallbladder problems but my primary has dx me w/ gerd/reflux disease.
    I do get the burps,. sometimes the food coming up my throat, nasty heartburn at times, I seem to get overly full fast. My srcipt for nexium may help but it certainly has'nt ended my troubles/pain.
    2 times this week when my heartburn was at its worse, I was having some scary chest pains. It was at night when I went to bed. Believe me I was scared.
    I almost thought I'd be heading to the er but thankfully the chest pains stopped.

    Can you please explain to me your symptoms??
    I wonder too if I could have a hiatal hernia? the symptoms sound close to what I feel.
    then again,... I've heard & read on this board of costochondritis,.... and it sounds alot like that. ??? I'm so confused.
    (and dreading the next time the chest pains come)

    I just need to get thru the holidays.(like all of us do :)
    thanks for any help
    Tandy

  2. richvank

    richvank New Member

    Hi, Tandy.

    In many cases of CFS, the stomach does not produce enough acid, and this can (paradoxically) produce acid reflux and heartburn.

    Conventional doctors typically treat acid reflux with patented proton pump inhibitor drugs, which shut off acid production. They used to prescribe the histamine H2 receptor blocker drugs, such as Tagamet, but the patents have run out on them and they are now sold over the counter. These drugs often eliminate the symptoms, but they also take away the benefits that stomach acid normally provides.

    It's possible to run a test yourself to determine whether the problem may be due to not enough stomach acid, rather than too much. The test is called the "baking soda--burp" test. It works like this: On an empty stomach, such as first thing in the morning, and having not been on acid-stopping drugs for a few days, drink an 8-ounce glass of water into which you have mixed one-quarter teaspoon of baking soda (sodium bicarbonate). Keep your eye on a clock or watch, and time how long it takes you to burp after you drink this solution. If you burp within 2 minutes, your stomach is producing enough acid. If not, it isn't.

    In cases in which stomach acid production is too low, many alternative physicians suggest use of betaine-HCl, which is available without prescription. The process of determining the dosage that they suggest is as follows: With a meal, take one betaine-HCl pill. With the next meal, take two pills, and so on, until you feel a warm feeling in your stomach after doing so. Then, decrease the dosage by one pill, and that's the dosage for each meal.

    Here are some of the beneficial things that stomach acid normally does:
    1. Kills bacteria and yeasts that come in with the food.
    2. Liberates certain minerals so that they can be better absorbed by the gut. This is particularly important for iron and calcium.
    3. Converts pepsinogen into pepsin in the stomach, to begin the digestion of proteins.
    4. Initiates hormonal signals to the pancreas and the gall bladder to release digestive enzymes and bile to the duodenum when food passes into it from the stomach, so that it can be properly digested.
    5. Begins the process of vitamin B12 binding so that it can interact with intrinsic factor and be absorbed in the latter part of the gut.

    Ultimately, I'm hopeful that the simplified treatment approach for lifting the partial methylation cycle block and raising the glutathione levels in CFS will lead to increased stomach acid production, together with many other benefits. In my hypothesis, the low stomach acid production in CFS results from glutathione depletion in the parietal cells of the stomach, which normally pump acid into the stomach. Glutathione depletion allows elevation of oxidizing free radicals in the mitochondria of these cells, and they partially block the Krebs cycle, lowering the production of ATP. ATP is what normally powers the ion pumps, so this lowers the rate of pumping of acid into the stomach.

    You can read more about this hypothesis and treatment in my post of July 18, 2007, or in my bio.

    Best regards,

    Rich


    [This Message was Edited on 12/22/2008]
  3. Empower

    Empower New Member

    Tandy

    Have you had testing done, like endoscopy or upper GI? They have ruled out heart issues?? I would definitely want a doctor to rule out any heart condition

    I was having upper stomach pain,(like a deep dull pain) and heartburn. I found that certain foods like tomato and fried food were making it worse

    Also, I found out (through upper gi) that I had a hiatal hernia and GERD.

    I have stopped eating after 7:30 which has helped

    Costochronditis to me is like a muscle ache

    I tried Protonix (prescription) and it made it worse - I was constantly burping and my stomach churned all the time.

    I take Tums when I get heartburn which helps. I will occasionally take a Pepto Bismal

    Let us know how you are doing
  4. dragon06

    dragon06 New Member

    My prescription for Protonix has helped me greatly with my GERD. I still have nausea and get full fast but that part is fairly manageable. I have notice that I cannot lie down within 1-2 hours of eating or drinking something like a milkshake or I will get baaaaad reflux.

    I had been on 40mg once a day of Protonix for about 5 years and just recently got upped to 40mg twice a day now cause my symptoms were coming back.
  5. tandy

    tandy New Member

    I'll have to try that burp test Rich.(thanks)

    I have'nt had any upper GI tests yet.
    Just some gallbladder tests which showed my gallbladder enlarged but yet functioning well. (???) why its enlarged is beyond me. Dr. seemed to think it was'nt my gallbladder.
    And just this past July I had a colonoscopy done,.... and I was acually hoping to get the scope down my throat to (endoscopy) just because of these symptoms, but the damn gastro. dr. did'nt feel it nessasary at that time since the symptoms of gerd had just recently started.
    He just suggested we'd see how I did taking the Nexium for awhile.

    I've been researching gerd and alot of people do complain of chest type pain with this.
    Thanks again everyone~
    and Merry Christmas
    Tandy
  6. PVLady

    PVLady New Member

    I would make certain you do not have gallstones. I had the same symptoms for several years before discovering I was loaded with gallstones. I suffered needlessly and looking back, I still get angry realizing how the doctors never even checked me for the gallstones.

    The surgeon told me most doctors miss diagnosing gallstones because the symptoms can vary so much. I never had classic symptoms but I did have symptoms of reflux, nausea, eventually poor appetite. It only takes a 10 minute ultrasound to check for gallstones. It is not invasive.

  7. Mikie

    Mikie Moderator

    Did they do to rule out gallbladder? They kept telling me it was acid reflux until the final nuclear medicine confirmed that my GB wasn't working at all. I had it removed and the symptoms are gone. Good luck.

    Love, Mikie
  8. loto

    loto Member

    I too, have these symptoms, and my Doctor put me on Nexium. It doesn't totally help either. Do you also feel very full after you eat just a little bit of food? I do, and am always bloated, and my stomach seems to be always distended. My daughter asked me if I'm pregnant!!! That's totally not possible. Anyway, my doctor told me if i continue having symptoms, he's going to have me get an ultrasound to check my gallbladder. So, I'm going back next week to complain some more to him and get the tests ordered! I'm also going to request bloodwork done. So, please keep complaining to your doctor like I do and get some tests done. My doctor is thankfully understanding and compassionate. I see him for my Fibro now, was seeing a neurologist that didn't seem to know much, and wasn't compassionate at all! I would say what i really think of him, but they probably wouldn't post this if I did!
    I'll try and remember to let you know what I find out after the tests are done! Hopefully I'll get some answers. I've been dealing with this too long and it's frustrating having the pain and bloating and bowel problems!
  9. dani78xo

    dani78xo New Member

    I've had GERD since I was 11, but the chest pain's always accompanied the heartburn for me.

    For some people, heartburn manifests itself in some serious chest pains that feel like they're coming from more to the side (i.e. the heart) than the esophagus, but it's normal. I get it sort of frequently, and when I get the heartburn sometimes I just have to keep putting pressure on that spot to help relieve the pain, but i've heard it's a normal side effect of GERD.

    In addition to the heartburn, I also get the regurgitation of acid, loss of appetite when it's really flaring up, and severe nausea when it's not under control.
  10. karynwolfe

    karynwolfe New Member

    All of what you described sounds like acid reflux to me. It causes a lot of off-the-wall symptoms, doesn't it?! The chest pains related to acid reflux/GERD are probably the most frightening. Also, the feeling like you can't get enough air that often accompanies that (and you keep yawning, trying to take a deep breath, but you can't). I'd definitely tell your doctor about it, but I've had all of that related to acid reflux.

  11. tandy

    tandy New Member

    still having the horrendous pain in this post. (minus,..Thank God the chest pains)
    but my upper gut is killing me. always worse after eating.
    and alot of foods bother it.
    not just fried foods.
    The only tests I've had to check for gallbladder disease was 1st a scan of the gallbladder. which found it enlarged/distended. (????) but the report mentioned nothing about stones being seen. Then I had the hida can done to show functioning of the gallbladder,... and that report said I had a normal functioning gallbladder.
    so now I'm thing ok,... I guess its not the gallbladder.

    Maybe I have a darn ulcer??
    My God !!I'm no damn dr. but SOMETHING is causing this pain!!
    and its pain that I can't ignore. Its that strong/bothersome.

    Yes,..I get bloated,and fill up fast. I have more than usual gas.
    sometimes I've noticed even my rib cage will be sore to touch. But the worse is the middle/pit of my stomach. (up high) sometimes when its crankin bad, i'll feel the urge to burp and when I do I can feel a bubble of food/ or juices coming up. (kinda in my chest area??)
    maybe it is all gerd. But you'd think the nexium would help more than it has.
    ??
    I'm thru the holidays and now I'm gonna push for more tests. Possibly a upper GI.
    I feel like I'm the dr. and the patient here.
    My dr. does'nt seem to care that most days of mine I'm in pain.
    (very uncaring, I think)
    I'm thankful I have you/members and this baord for help.
    kinda giving me ideas.
    thanks everyone~
    (I hope I have'nt forgotten anything)
    Hugs
    Tandy
    (adding:while searching,.. I also found Gastritis to sound alot like what I'm going thru)
  12. crissylove73

    crissylove73 New Member

    I know it's been several years and I certainly hope you found your problem. I've been expierencing very similar problems myself with no help from my pcp or GI doc. all tests come back neg. or ok. but there is obviously something wrong. like you the aciphex helps some but I still have lots of reflux. if you still post I would love to know what you found out.
  13. kbak

    kbak Member

    Hi Tandy,
    Yes I've been all through this. First you need to get an endoscopy. Mine found that I had a hiatal hernia, which was causing my GERD.

    You have to change what you eat or you will continue to have terrible bloating and gas. I had to give up grains, which ferment in your stomach, and very much sugar, again ferments. Plus gaseous vegtables, culiflower and broccali and tomatoes.

    Not that I won't ever eat those things, just not very often. Yes it's a severe change! Just depends on how you want to feel. The trouble with the PPI's is that long term they have serious side effects.

    I was taking Prilosec, but had to quit that because I have osteoporosis. My GI doc said to switch to Zantac because it was less harmful than Prilosec.

    I eat dinner early so that I'm 3-4 hrs without eating before bed. This is no fun to live with. Hope you find what works for you.

    Take Care,
    kbak
  14. SherylS

    SherylS Member

    of these symptoms but they all went away when I quit eating gluten. This also worked for my son--he had been on acid reducers for two years and they weren't really helping. As soon as he gave up gluten, GERD was gone.
  15. mbofov

    mbofov Active Member

    I posted a reply to you on the health board re this, which you might want to take a look at -

    Mary
  16. Nikki

    Nikki Member

    Don't stop trying to find out the cause. Find another Dr. if you must.

    B/c I had gerd and hiatil hernia, it took a long time for me to get dx'd when I had bloating and pain (3 mos).

    Probably what I had was very rare, but not impossible . . . I had a blockage of the mesenteric artery (it feeds the intestines). I ended up having emergency surgery to repair the artery . . . it is attached to the aorta and also had to have 9 ft of intestines removed.

    I'm fine now. But, if the pain continues to get worse (I ended up in the ER 3 times with severe pain b/f a surgeon finally decided to get involved), please have someone do an ultrasound. Don't let Dr. just brush this off.

    For me, Waiting any longer could have cost me my life.

    You take care and keep us posted.

    Peace and Soft Hugs,
    Sharon


    [This Message was Edited on 12/11/2012]
    [This Message was Edited on 12/11/2012]
  17. ColleenD

    ColleenD New Member

    Daughter has had brittle Type 1 diabetes for 21 years. Thank God, her only main complaint is GERD and has developed a low-acid diet for herself, which is helping her symptoms. I'd be glad to share it with anyone interested.

    Merry Christmas with prayers for all my ProHealth friends,
    Linda D.
  18. Lookn4health

    Lookn4health Member

    I have had stomach problems for 26 years (as long as I have had CFIDS). Way back in the mid 80's I was taking Zantac for several years. I had every test ran back then.

    Then in the 90's I found a better doctor. I was filling up real fast on just a bite or 2 of food. He ran a test on me where you eat oatmeal with a radio active ingredient to see how fast your stomach empties. Mine emptied very slow.
    He told me I had Gastroparesis which is delayed stomach emptying. He asked me if I had Diabetes and I told him no. He said normally only severe diabetics get this condition. He wondered how I got that condition. I thought about my Mother who had brittle diabetes and she did not have it and so I was really wondering how I could get a condition like that. It puzzled me for a long time. After a few years I stopped thinking about it and just chalked it up to the stomach conditions that people with CFIDS get.

    The doctor put me on a drug called Reglan which you take one before each meal and one at bedtime. I took it for several years and then decided I did not need it anymore and I stopped the ones before meals and only took it at night.

    This came about when I saw in a newspaper article that Reglan had side affects. So I stopped taking it all together.

    Next I had the Hydrascan and it showed that my gallbladder was not functioning at a good level and it had to be removed. So I had my gallbladder removed in August of 2011. I still have pain where my gallbladder was. I have told 2 doctors about that pain and they will not say one word about what is going on.

    I also had GERD before/during the feeling full part and from that GERD I got Barrets Esophagus. So I am on Nexium for many years now.

    I have had 2 endoscopies in the last 4 years and they are the same both times. Nothing had changed.

    Now 2-3 months ago I started having pain right at the end of my esophagus. It is pain like it is burning a hole in my stomach. Also pain like a sparkler is in there radiating out the pain.

    I went to the doctor and I need to have a test on my Esophagus (I cannot think of the name right now) and an Upper GI. I scheduled the test for the 18th of December. I got a call canceling the test because there is no BARIUM. There is a shortage of it. This test was scheduled at one of the largest hospitals in the large city I live in. So now I will have to wait till they get some BARIUM or I will have to call all over the city trying to find a place that has it that will take my insurance.

    So you could ask your doctor about Reglan. It took care of the feeling full part rather fast.

    I had been taking Valtrex for about 4 months for the HHV6 and while it has knocked down the virus quite a bit it has done nothing to make me feel any better.

    As a matter of fact I was getting sicker and sicker with severe pain where I think I have the pain from my gallbladder being removed. But I was thinking all this time that was my liver hurting me.

    So I ended up at the health food store almost in tears because I was so sick. The lady asked me if I had an inflamed liver. I never thought about that so I went home and checked the cinnamon I had bought and it showed that it can be hard on your liver. Next I checked the Valtrex and that is also hard on your liver but I remembered my doctor told me the last time I was in that my liver and kidneys were fine. See I have fatty liver and I only have one kidney.
    But I stopped taking the Valtrex and in 3 days that pain was manageable again. I stopped the Valtrex for 3 months but when I went to see the doctor the HHV6 count was high again. I have not restarted the Valtrex yet but I plan to as soon as I can get the Upper GI done and see what is going on in there.
  19. luigi21

    luigi21 Member

    usually if nothing untoward is found on an endoscopy they diagnose gerd. Raising the head of the bed sometimes helps, i use telephone directories (least there good for something). i take omeprazole, and gaviscon or maalox which is a suspension. i've suffered with it since i was 15, stress obviously aggravates it, as does certain foods, especially acidic fruits, and spicey foods. chew you food well. dont eat just before going to bed. i know mines acid, because it affects my teeth. And yes its horrible when its at its worst, can keep you awake.