Help with functional dyspepsia
Hello everyone! I am new to the forum and this is the first time I have ever posted about my situation. I am so tired of being sick I'm hoping someone might have some advice to help me cope. My illness started about 5 years ago when I began suddenly feeling nauseous after eating, and getting full after only eating a few bites of food. Being an emetophobe (fear of vomiting) this would practically send me into a state of panic although it has never actually made me vomit. Over the first couple of years I lost a significant amount of weight because I was hardly eating. Eventually I discovered that a good burp would relieve my discomfort, but the trapped gas wouldn't come out for 15 to 30 minutes after eating leaving me miserable until it did. For some reason, walking helps the burps to start. While I am nauseous and bloated, my salivary glands go crazy and I end up walking around the block spitting every 10 feet. There is no pain or heartburn, just pressure and nausea.
The first GI doctor I saw basically wrote it off and literally told me I was lucky to have a "natural lap-band". He said he was reluctant to treat me because I would probably gain weight again. Of course I ditched him for a new doctor, who promised me she would get some answers. I have had two gastric emptying studies that both showed I had rapid gastric emptying. I also had an upper GI series of x-rays that showed nothing unusual, and finally an upper endoscopy that showed minor duodenitis and microscopic evidence of acid reflux. The doctor felt neither of these was severe enough to cause my symptoms. She basically ended up saying it was functional dyspepsia and there wasn't really anything we could do about it. She recommended a low daily dose of Elavil which didn't help. I have tried various PPI's to no effect. I have also been checked for all the usual suspects including H. Pylori and everything has come back negative.
I am now at the point where I actually fear eating. I haven't enjoyed a good meal in years. I can eat about half a plate of food before I feel uncomfortably full. I would say I have a bad attack of dyspepsia about four times a week although sometimes I can go a couple weeks feeling relatively okay. I dread going out to eat with friends and there have been times I couldn't even drive home without taking a walk to get the gas out. I'm popping Pepto and antacids like candy and nothing helps. When I eat, it feels like my stomach just refuses to expand and I feel miserable. A few months ago I had painful spasms in my neck and my regular doctor prescribed muscle relaxants which oddly enough did seem to help my stomach a little, but when told my GI doc about this she saw no connection and told me they couldn't be used to treat my stomach. Could my stomach be constantly tense? How can I relax it?
If anyone else has this condition or similar symptoms, please let me know how you deal with it! Any advice or insight is appreciated, thanks!