Two months ago I was doubling up with GERD and IBS symptoms. Breathlessness, racing heart beat, sweating profusely, stomach pains, nausea, diarrhea, unable to sleep, ......all were there. Went to the doctor and I was given Nexpro which is the equivalent of Nexium and other drugs like Mebeverine Hydrochloride, Domperidon and antiacids. My prescription was to use for 3.5 months 80mg Nexpro (Nexium). At 5-6 weeks my symptoms went down significantly and I was quite alright. Just a bit of bloating but nothing serious. At the same time I found out (I was NOT told by the doctor) about the addictive nature of Nexium. 7th week since my symptoms have settled I started to tail off the medication. Now, I believe I am experiencing acid rebound. I'm on my 8th week. All of a sudden the chest pains, sore throat, cramps, breathlessness re-appeared. Less severe still when compared with how I went to the doctor initially. But they appeared, just like that. This took only 2 days to come back if not even a bit earlier after I started the tailing off process. I didn't STOP the Nexium cold. Not yet...just starting to go from 80mg to 60mg (stayed there for 2 days to see any effect, nothing happened) then down from 60 mg to 40 mg and there, it all started. Maybe I tailed this off too soon thinking it was safe because I didn't have a reaction. They do say that some people don't have the rebound so I thought I might be one of those.
But in my 8th week which is now, when acid rebound is occuring, I haven't gone back to increasing the Nexium dose. I am still hanging on at 40 mg a day and using antiacids to combat the acid and also a good diet. It is hard though and worrying too but I don't think there is another option. My doctor is unavailable. I doubt there is a point in visiting him since he didn't even mention the possibility of an acid rebound. Had he said, I'd have chosen my drugs differently. I nearly got sent to a CT scan.....by MISTAKE. Would you believe it? Fortunately for me I questioned this a second time and discovered that it was a confusion with another patient!!!! So, how can I trust to get help by going back there......
If you have any information to share about acid rebound, how long it lasted, what helped you etc, I'd greatly appreciate it. My greatest concern is that I might end up where I started off, i.e. stomach getting damaged again with all this acid that is coming out. I hope this will only be for a few days because I've not been on the drug for 'too long' as it is. I've read though that even 4-6 weeks is enough to cause a rebound of acid in some individuals.
You may just be relapsing as the acid comes back and not rebound. Sometimes it takes months as in 4->6 to settle acid reflux down and heal the damage done. Yours sounds like a fairly severe case. Some folks need to stay on these pills pretty much permanently.
Rebound is different for everyone, I spent 2 months on Nexium followed up with a month on Prevacid in 2010 and had no rebound coming off them. Hard to tell the difference between rebound and the initial damage if you haven't healed properly. One thing you could do while paring back the Nexium is supplement with a H2 such as Pepcid, Ranitidine etc.. They work differently in the body, help to control the acid and have less issues with rebound.
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I have been very slowly weening off of Prevacid (2pills). I am currently at my last taper, Im taking 1/4 of a pill. I cut down 12 1/2% every 2 weeks. It has worked well, but at the 1/2 pill mark I started getting more reflux back. I started getting burning when lying down, which was never a symptom before I went on these meds, so Im assuming, for now, its rebound. I finally started adding pepcid 20mg before bedtime a few nights ago since Im basically down to 8 grains of the medicne. It really has helped. My dr said to stay on the pepcid for 2 weeks, then I will be completely off of the prevacid....then go to every other day pepcid for a few days then try nothing and see how I do. Hang in there, its a long process. There is also no way of knowing if you are going to need acid supression in the future. Gerd is a real disease and I am prepared after 3 months from completley taking no acid medicine if my symptoms return I will go back on something (probably pepcid to start). I took prevacid for 15 years and have low iron, low b12, low mag, and low vit d. So I had to try . I started my stepping down in June, so I took a long time to do it right. I tried 3 times in the past very unsuccessfully so I wanted to do it right this time. Good luck, and keep us posted.
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Thank you both for sharing and giving me hope. Here's what my stomach has been up to since I wrote last. Yesterday, it seemed happier than the previous day when it gave me that awful pain and cramp and a whole lot of other symptoms. Nothing like that yesterday but you know how you can tell when the stomach becomes 'unhappy' or a change happens internally all of a sudden? Like "something just shifted" sort of feeling that comes all of a sudden? Well, that happened around 4pm. Afterwards a mild chest heaviness, breathing heaviness, dull headache started. Usually when this happens I read it as a trouble sign and give the stomach something to do like digesting a banana. It then reversed some of the symptoms that were on the increase. But momentarily. After another 20 mins say I was back in the same state. Gave it something more, porridge. That seemed to work better this time. I stayed without much issue until like 7:30 pm when the symptoms started to increase. Then using Tums and after another 20 mins drinking the ongoing lowered doses of Nexium, Domperidon etc (I don't take Mebeverine now...managed to stop that sometime ago) got rid of the symptom. That was yesterday. So, I survived yesterday without a major attack. No diarrhea either and no nausea. Now, this morning, I woke up and drank some water and ahaaaa....stomach wasn't happy at all. I thought I might throw everything out at the way it turned. Thought it was going to cramp. Pained. Then 1 min maybe it settled. Maybe the water I put shifted some gas that was there? When gas shifts that hurts too doesn't it...? But I thought it needed something to work on so put a banana and that was happily accepted. Hasn't bothered me since but it is still morning for me here :-)
Strange thing is, my stomach is very happy when I put in food. If I say eat a good sized plate of rice, it'll just calm down and stay like that for a good 3-4 hours. It is when it starts to 'empty out' that all the symptoms seem to return. Any ideas why this might be? I've known some people to complain (when having gastritis) about stomach pain and eating difficulties when putting in food. Sometimes this happens to me but after eating, it is like I've no illness. Bananas and honey has a way of calming the stomach for me. So I take them between meals.
I too will as you've said tail this off slower than what I started with. Looks like that has worked for so many in this condition and fingers crossed I too will sail that way.
maybe your stomach is sensitive when it is empty to the acid. Maybe its irritating since its relieved by eating? I know that hunger that is relieved by eating can also be a sign of a ulcer, but there are usually other symptoms like pain. Thats all that I can think of. I know with its not good to focus on symptoms. Try eating smaller and more frequent times throughout the day. I make myself a smoothie every day and it is easy on the digestion and keeps me full for several hours. I use 10 ounces of almond milk and frozen strawberries and frozen mangos with a tablespoon of peanut butter and blend until thick and smooth. I tend to get reflux on a empty stomach and eating often relieves it. I also take digestive enzymes and they really help alot. I take digest gold as they are supposed to work the best.
I dont have ibs so I can only understand the Acid reflux part
Hi Ksc, Thanks. I forgot to mention something...rarely do I feel hunger. A normal person would but for me it is now different after getting this gastritis / ibs issue. I USED to feel it back then before all this. Now what I get is like a heavy chest, some feeling of emptiness etc that I interpret as "I should eat now that it is mid day" or something. Just pretty much going by the clock. But after eating the symptoms go away. Any thoughts...?