Does anyone else here get spasms in their esophagus? I had an Endoscopy done last week and doctor said I had "strong tertiary contractions" i.e. contractions in the esophagus, I think she meant lower part.
I also have been getting spasms in my throat, in what feels like the larynx and pharynx. I do have LP reflux (larngeal, pharyngeal) and I am thinking the acid causes the spasms. Having both the esophagus spasm and the L and P at the same time has caused me ENORMOUS discomfort. I had trouble breathing and talking and it was really distressing when it happened last night. I finally took a mild sedative and once it kicked in (took a little while), the spasms did subside. But it was really hellish while it lasted... I thought I might stop breathing. It was just so hard to breathe with the throat all tight and then the chest tight from the espohagus spasming down lower.
Has this ever happened to anyone else and if so, what did u do for it? I dont want to have to keep taking a Xanax like medication to alleviate it as it makes me drowsy and also depressed as it wears off. My doctor basically said nothing can be done about the spasms... seemed to be saying "Live with it" in a way. Said anxiety causes them but I am not so sure of that. There msut be SOMETHING that can be done. I was really close to calling 911, thats how hard it felt to breathe.... some of it might have been anxiety from all the spasming, but still, it was a very very upsetting experience and now I am living in fear of the next one.
Any help or advice is appreciated. I didnt die (obviously) but it sure felt like I might.
Hi Farmgirl, I have had the spasms since 1981. I will go thru periods that I don't have any at all and then I will get them every night. I know what causes them sometimes, and that is the ibuprofen I take for headaches. I won't take an ibuprofen unless I absolutely have to. I just deal with them, I know they can feel like a heart attack, and when I first had them it scared me to death. Sounds crazy, but when I get them, I eat soda crackers, and slowly drink some water. It does help, at least it helps me, and if nothing else, it takes my mind off of them.
Are you going to a gastroenterologist? If not, you probably ned to see one. I have heard there are things that can be done to help this. Take care..
I have seen 2 Gastro docs and the one did an Endoscopy on me a few weeks ago. She said my espohagus spasms/contracts a lot but that there is no treatment and is likely due to anxiety.
Then I started experiencing what feel like spasms in my pharynx. It was so bad and I had trouble breathing, and was a little scared, so I went to the ER. This was Thursday. They didnt really do anything for me and said it was due to my acid reflux. Ive had reflux for years and never had such a severe spasm and where I had trouble breathing either. So anyway, I went to an ENT doctor the very next day where he did a Layrngoscopy (sp?).... looked into my throat and vocal cords and said vocal cords looked ok.
He thought it was the pharynx spasming, as did I. I was concerned about this being able to kill me because it is so severe when it happens, I have trouble talking and breathing but he shook his head when I asked that (if it could kill me). I have been taking an anti-anxiety med to help quell the spasms.
So i have the spasms in the pharynx and then down further in my esophagus. WHen they happen at the same time, it is very very distressful. Its the bottom part of my esophagus that spasms so I feel it more in my chest, like near the breastbone area. Then the pharynx starts up and the 2 combined is very bad. I take the benzodiazapine medication to loosen up the spasms and it usually works but I cant go on living this way. The med makes me drowsy and also depressed too.
I have looked into low Magnesium and/or Calcium causing this and am taking extra Magnesium right now. Im in treatment for recovery from Lyme Disease and some digestive disorders. Ive done some reading online and have read that you can die from spasms in the pharynx?? I hope I read that wrong and that it was associated with something else. This is really unnerving me and Im afraid of having to give up my job.
I take reflux meds, which dont work for me, and take many natural remedies given me by an excellent Homeopathic doctor I see. Im getting pretty down about this and not sure what to do. Dont want to go to the ER again but i might if i get it really bad once more. There has to be something that can be done instead of popping a mild tranquilizer....? Ive already changed my diet drastically, lost 65 pounds, sleep with a wedge under my pillow, dont wear tight clothes, exercise regularly, get enough sleep, dont smoke or drink and drink as much water as I can. What else can I do??
Hi FG, I am so sorry you are feeling so down from this as well as having to go thru it. First off, I want to tell you what has been told to me. You can get Botox in the esophagus for this condition, and it does work, at least from what I have read and heard from my Doctor. As to why I don't get it (Botox), is a long story so I will try to keep it short. Back in 1981, I could not swallow, nothing, not even water. I got a dilitation of my esphagus and it ruptured my esophagus in 3 different places. I almost died from the whole thing, and having all that repaired was very painful, I was in the hospital for 17 days, could not eat or drink, they were feeding me with tubes. Long story short, I just don't want anything done to me anymore as far as my esophagus goes, so I SUFFER. I have acid reflux horribly, and I am now afraid it will cause cancer in my esophagus it is so bad. I have taken every medicine known to mankind for the acid, and am currently taking prevacid. It has gotten so bad that I am now reconsidering the botox. Anyway, know that you are not alone and ask your doc about the botox and if he doesn't know about it, then find another doc that does.
Usually spasms and or cramping of any muscle in the body including the esophagus is caused by a lack of magnesium in your system.
Every cell in your body contains magnesium and about 66% is in the bones.
The daily requiement is 400 mgm and if you buy a type that you can take in at least 3 doses daily -- you will get better absorption.
And, taking too much will cause loose stools --- it is in several laxatives. It is also in alot of foods but for some reason it is an easily lost mineral. I have read that some nutritional experts think 75% of people lack magnesium in there system.
I suggest you read some of the thread at the top of this Page-- "Gerd Suffers -- I Feel Good-- Let me tell you why". Bluepumkin suffered for 9 years with a hiatal hernia that was cured by magnesium.
The problem is very similar to yours!!
I have had tension, once to a point of gagging in my throat/pharynx for a very long time, I was told in 2006 and that my magnesium levels and iron were low, but I ignored this at the time thinking that was too simple an explanation.
I havev looked at everything but magnesium, and nothing has worked
I have been on magnesium three days but maybe its too soon to see an improvement
I still keep thinking its got to be more complex,
I got these problems after taking calcium d-glucarate in a supplement
I have been taking flexeril for a while, for my neck spasms. I asked my doc about the esophagus spasms and she told me that the flexeril should help with the esophagus spasms. I never put 2 & 2 together, because I wasn't having the E spasms for a while and then I went off the flexeril and the E spasms came back. So, I went back on the flexeril and guess........the E spasms went away.
So ask your doc for flexeril or some other kind of med that takes care of muscle spasms. IT REALLY WORKS! Geez, all these years I suffered and I could have been taking flexeril.
The Following User Says Thank You to 1sunny1 For This Useful Post: redjb7 (03-10-2012)
I still havent gotten totally to the bottom of all this, no. BUT, i do think low calcium and magnesium/an imbalance is at least a contributing factor at the very least. I really recommend a product known as "Calm." You find it in health food stores and online and it is Magnesium Citrate in a powdered form. It helped me for sure!! I still take it but not daily. You mix the powder in hot water and drink it as a tea and u can feel it working immediately to relax, soothe and also release spasms.
Krisuk, I too am interested in finding the root cause(s) and not covering up with a medication, but I am so worn out and frustrated now with the spasms that in desperation perhaps I should consider a muscle relaxant...?
But no.... i would not want to become dependent on those and worried that if I were to stop taking them, back would come the symptoms. The root cause needs to be found and then remedied. Also I have taken Flexeril before in the past and I did not like at all how it made me feel (loopy). It may have helped the muscle issues I was having at the time, but I didnt appreciate the drug at all and quit it.
Well I pray we both are led to whatever remedy will provide safe and lasting relief! I get spamsms in my guts/intestines very badly now too, cant remember if I mentioned those on here. It feels like my guts coil up, honestly, and then i experience quite a distended abdomen and pretty extreme discomfort all around. Ive been taking an extra dose of an anti-anxiety medication when it happens very badly but I HATE to do that and only do so when its really bad as i said. But man, it feels like my guts are just cramping and heaving and pressing into my stomach and I experience some difficulty breathing.
Peace to you! Maybe the "Calm" will bring some healing at least for now? And yes, it can take time for Magnesium levels to go up so give it time if thats what you're taking now to help.
This probably is not much help to you being so far away
there is a woman in England that uses a different technology to indentify hormonal imblances, I'm not really sure how she does it, but I was pretty impressed. I'm 100% certain she got something amazing, but it will never been an approaved mdeical tool.
Her machine (which she moded herself i believe) indicated I had a oxytocin imbalance. Ocxyotcin obviously very much linked to smooth muscle contraction. She the first person I've seen whee my dr when, yep I heard good stuff about her. I have not seen evidence that is causes pharynx contractions???
I am half looking into oxytocin as a possibility.
BTW have you ever tired Vitex, that inhibits contractions (possibly oxytocin) and also balances hormones.
originally this product (given to me by the lady above) really really helped, its was from horrible discomfort to almost normal in two weeks. after time it stopped working a little.
but what was amazing is she was the first person to actually really help
I have written some of this on this thread but I thought may need repeating with some additions??
Magnesium is in every cell of your body and 66% is in your bones. To properly absorb calcium -- a person needs magnesium as well as vitamin D.
Lacking magnesium will cause spasms as well as cramps in any muscle in your body.
I have found to absorb minerals of all types the best type is chelatd that isinternationally pattented by Albion Labs and sold to manufacturers for distribution. The mineral is bonded to a protein amino acid like glycinate or lysine --- that is smaller and passes through the intestinal wall more readily. Also, chelated minerals do not need stomach acids for absorption like some minerals.
Last edited by Harry; 11-09-2008 at 10:45 PM.
I too have strong tertiary esophageal contractions. Just had one this morning. Seems they only come when I do not chew or eat certain foods. Its like if it goes down in a big lump, my esophagus will not let it through. Now get this...I live by myself and felt as though i could not breathe so i ran to the kitchen and got some sparkling perrier water and kept drinking and it went down. I will tell my next door neighbor if someone is banging on her door early in the am it will be me. lol and alert her to my problem. I literally felt as though I was going to die. I am going to doctor to try and get a prescription for something. I did not know that zanax was for that. How have you been with it? My doctor who did my upper GI series basically said, "live with it".
I suggest you go back and read some of the older threads and posts about esophagus spasms as well as cramping--- an extreamely good reason is lack of Magnesium in your diet and it's in every cell of your body.
A very good homeopathic remedy is Magnesia Phos. --6X potency that can be bought at health food stores. As you have leaned Doctor don't treat nutritional defieciencies.
The best supplement that you need on a longer term basis is Chelated Magnesium.
Thnx Harry, never entered my mind, now I know why I am also getting cramps in my feet. On my way to whole food to pick up the mag 6x and will consult my physician Dr. Ali, when I am in NY next week. I moved to NC recently but still go back to NYC for my wholistic health care. My diet has def. been off since moving south. FYI - Dr. Ali is on Mon. and Tues. on WBAI radio between 12-2 pm and he is an awesome integrative approach physician. To give you something so simple, when at one visit, I told him I did not feel like I was getting enuf oxygen in my body. he made me soak my feet in hydrogen peroxide and epsom salt. when my daughter developed hyperthyroidism evry wanted to cut her thyroid out and he treated it over a year using an integrative approach: - 10 mg tapazol, lemon balm, motherwort, hawthorne berry, and passion flower, followed with using castor oil hot compress each nite on her thyroid. My daughter gained back the 40 lbs. she lost and hair grew back and her pulse and heart rate is normal and that huge thyroid disappeared. Now that is healing....
thanks so much for putting me back on track
I want to thank everyone that contributed to this thread. One of the most informative that I've read. I have a 2cm hiatal hernia that was discovered in October of last year. I am using Ativan (like Xanax) in order to cope with the anxiety from these attacks. What I didn't understand but makes total sense to me now is that the Ativan is actually calming down the actual spasm which is really causing the anxiety in the first place. I'd like to hear what any of u have done when u have to embark on a long car ride somewhere. The spasms at some point are going to hit you since your sitting there for a long period of time. Any input would be great as I travel all around florida doing my job and have suffered horribly from these spasms. --JF
I think I have replied on this board before, but it has been a very long time. I can understand why you take the ativan, and the calming effect, I went thru it for so long with no help from any doctor, he just kept telling me it was heart burn and I knew better. I actually diagnosed myself, and this was back in the 80's, I have had the spasms since then and now I don't get them as often as I used to, Doctors told me I had everything from heartburn to being constipated...YEAH! I knew what it was. The only thing I ever found that helped me was eating soda crackers! Imagine sitting up at night and eating soda crackers, but it really helped. So I keep them handy, I don't get it much anymore, but the soda crackers are still on my night stand. I take them everywhere I go!
Sunny were u ever diagnosed with hiatal hernia? I went and got some magnesium today to see what would happen in the near future. I'm at a theme park today remembering that I use to ride rollercoasters. Who knows maybe I'll be able to get back to riding them. The last 16 months have been tough dealing with this condition so any improvement or stability of it would be wonderful.