Hi all ~
I've been reading through the posts on Barrett's Esophagus (BE) and, since all the threads were 4+ years old, I decided to just start a new one, especially because new technologies have emerged since then. I was just wondering if anyone has had similar symptoms as to what I am experiencing and I would like to know various treatment options, progression, if any; and advice. (I also posted this thread on the Acid Reflux/GERD board because I was unsure as to which was most appropriate).
I am 38 and have suffered from severe acid reflux and GERD for as long as I can remember - approx 20 years. Digestive disorders also run in my family. Both my mother and only sibling have GERD, and my grandfather died at 68 after many years suffering with colon cancer. However, no one in my immediate family has ever had esophageal cancer or even been diagnosed with BE, although I feel they are very likely to probably have it.
In 2006 the reflux was unbearable. I had an endoscopy which revealed esophatitis/erosion. I was put on Nexium and it helped for a long time. For the past year I have had severe reflux daily and regurgitation at least 3 to 4 times a month. Often I wake up choking because i will regurgitate in my sleep and it will go down my windpipe. It's terrible. My diet hasn't changed but I have since gained some weight after having a baby. But I am not obese by any means.
In addition to the GERD I started to gain weight very rapidly around my waist, which had me a little concerned. I went to the GI doc who ordered an upper GI/endoscopy and colonoscopy. This was in June 2011.
My endoscopy revealed:
- grade 2 esophagitis in GE junction
- a small hiatal hernia
- erythema in the GE junction
- BE without dysplasia (results of biopsy)
The pathology report reads, in short: "Benign Squamocolumnar mucosa with intestinal metaplasia in a setting of reflux (whatever that means)...without evidence of dysplasia or malignancy".
The colonoscopy revealed 3 benign polyps and hemorrhoids.
My GI ordered an RX of some PPI that starts with a "D" that didn't help much at all. I really didn't think anything of the BE diagnosis until I realized that "hey, I'm still experiencing severe reflux, vomitting, and aspiration" and wondered if it could become worse. I called the doc and told them that the meds weren't working figuring I needed to pay better attention to this BE business. They got me the next available, which is in 2 weeks. Now I'm paranoid. Could the continued reflux and regurgitation have caused additional damage within this 6 month timeframe that won't be caught until the next endoscopy, scheduled in 6 to 9 mos? I'm a little concerned that within 4 years my endoscopy went from erosion to Barrett's. I haven't found any research that shows trending or timeframes for typical progression, if any, of non-dysplasic BE to dysplasic.
Finally, another thing that had me worried recently is that during one month's time I've experienced episodes of EXCESSIVE gas (from both ends) with no change in diet preceding it. It was so bad one day that I had no appetite and didn't eat for 36 hours and was constantly belching and passing gas out of my rear, even as I slept. I've never experienced anything like it. About 2 weeks later, the same thing.
Does this sound familiar to anyone? Has anyone had a similar diagnosis or experience? If so, please tell me about it and any diagnoses related to your experience as well as course of treatment.
Thank you so much! Sorry for such a long post. It just seems like a lot of crap to be going on for a person not even 40 years old. LOL