Hey everyone. I'm a 24 year old female and I'm on hour 9 of my 24 hour pH test. I have had symptoms of LPR for 9 months. It has probably been the most uncomfortable 9 months of my life. I've had an EGD which was normal but when my ENT looks at my throat with his camera it is always red and inflamed. I'm been on a cocktail of meds without much relief. So my GI doctor decided it was time for a 24 hour pH test along with the esophageal manometry study.
I went this morning to have the manometry test done and my pH probe placed. I'll have to admit the manometry test was extremely uncomfortable. My nose and throat were already sore due to being off of my PPIs for 10 days. (you have to stop them 10 days before the pH test). So the tube going down and coming back out was quite uncomfortable. The nurse told me she could tell that my esophageal motility was very weak and my Dr. would tell me more about that.
Putting the pH tube down was a bit trickier due to it being "stiffer tubing." It took her about 6-7 tries to get it down. It kept coiling in my mouth and causing me to gag. She finally numbed the back of my throat and it went down much easier after that.
So here I am on my 9th hour and feeling kind of bummed. I can watch the pH of my esophagus fluctuate on the machine when I drink, eat, lay down. The little numbers are constantly changing. I've only seen my pH drop below 4 when I'm eating and drinking. (A pH below 4 in the esophagus is indicative of stomach reflux into the esophagus). For the most park my pH is hanging out between 6-8 with an occasional drop to 5. I'm not saying that I want something to be wrong with me. But I'm afraid my pH will come back normal and then my Dr. will think this reflux is all in my head. Is it all in my head? Surely not.
The actual tube in my throat right now isn't that bad. However when I eat it pulls and causes some discomfort. I am also getting annoyed with have to record every time I burp.. I never realized how much I burp in one day.... I also hate the fact that I can't chew gum, sip on drinks, or suck on throat lozenges. I'm a habitual gum chewer.. It usually help my reflux tremendously....
Which type of pH probe placement do you have? Is it above the LES or UES?
I've had the one above the LES twice now, most recently last August. I'd had extremely bad symptoms in the proceeding months, but on the day of the test, I was feeling great, no real symptoms. I was worried that the test wouldn't reflect how much I had been suffering.
For me, the LPR/GERD was really affecting my breathing and I had a chronic cough. The coughing was constant and the breathing problems were scary.
Anyway, when my test results came back, it showed severe reflux. Makes me wonder what it would be on a "bad" day. My DeMeeter score was something like 46 or 48. Anything over 14 is considered bad. The DeMeeter score is your result of the testing. It is figured based on the frequency and duration of your refluxing incidents throughout the day.
I agree with you about that second tube. Even though it is thinner, it hurts more. Swallowing also pulls on the tube. Still, I'd do the test again in a heartbeat if it was required.
Hey I'm not sure where the pH probes are exactly. I do know that it is a dual probe test. And it is measuring the pH in 2 different spots. Do they give you the score the day that they take the tube out? Or do you have to wait until your Dr. appt?
Thanks for the reply...
I'm on my 12th hour and still managing okay...
Your dual probe would have one above the LES and one above the UES. The lower probe allows them to measure any reflux incidents that you have. The upper one measures how often the reflux is reaching your throat.
I had to wait about a week after the test for my GI follow-up and to get my results. They have to "read" the results from the computer to figure your results first. Depending on how busy your docs office is, it can take a while to get the results.
By the way, getting the tube out is easy. Getting the sticky residue from the tape they used to fasten the tube to my face wasn't. I was sticky for a week.