I was diagnosed with Gerd and Erosive esophagitis about 2 years ago and was placed on Nexium. It helped immensely. What led me to get checked in the first place was the lump in the throat and swallowing problems. Well after things cleared up and we lost our insurance, I stopped the Nexium. I also was not able to get a follow up scope. We still do not have insurance and I have been taking the prilosec otc and since I foolishly did not change all my eating habits, have had acid reflux back for awhile now and this time I feel worse. I am now choking on smaller bits of food so today I have started on liquids. I also foolishly typed something in on a search and saw that my symptoms say it is esophagael cancer. Which I know it could be but when I was scoped I had no Baretts. Do you think cancer could have come on this fast in two years? I am so scared and as I said I cannot get a scope right now. I hope the liquid diet and the prilosec otc twice daily will heal this. I have also had chest pain and upper back pain which I did not have two years ago, just the heartburn and swallowing issue. I guess I hope this is a stricture and not cancer. I just hope someone here can reassure me, maybe if you are having the same symptoms. Thank you so much for reading. And to everyone with Gerd, God bless. This is not a fun condition for sure
Last edited by packerbacker04; 01-10-2008 at 03:18 PM.
I don't know that I would go into panic mode, however I would consult your regular doctor if you can afford an office visit without having insurance. I was taking prilosec but had the scope done about 6 weeks ago. ( I think I have taken almost every PPI on the market and used to take Prilosec when it was still prescription only). I too was put on nexium for erosion in my esophogus. I also had some incidents with food getting stuck and have had GERD for 10 years.
A friend of mine had a scope last week who was having lots of choking issues on his food. He found out the scope showed a large hernia, which increases GERD and issues related to acid and choking. He hasn't had his follow up appt. yet, but the scope showed no erosion for him. Apparently the hernia is causing all of the problems for him.
I am thinking perhaps you also have a hiatal hernia. I have a small one, but my dr. said nothing needed to be done with the size of mine. Read up on hiatal hernia's and consult your doctor if you do not feel better. At least your regular M.D. can give you their opinion.
Keep us posted on how you are feeling and what you decide to do.
You may also be having a gallbladder attack with chest pain and upper back pain. That is how my attacks presented last year and I just suffered for 12+ hours of excrusiating pain all 4 times thinking it was just my GERD/heartburn and it would go away.
It did eventually go away each time, but then I had to have gallbladder surgery. The surgeon I went to couldn't believe I had suffered through the attacks without going to the ER. I guess when you have a high pain tolerance, it is not always a good thing.
Best of luck to you, I just thought I'd throw out that thought as well after I re-read your post. You might want to explore gallbladder symptoms online.
I am so sorry you are scared and don't know for sure what is wrong or what to do. I have been without health insurance before so I know what that's like. I recommend seeing a new doctor and finding out for sure what is causing your problems. In one of the other posts they thought perhaps you had a hiatal hernia. I have a hiatal hernia and you do have a lot of the symptoms. There are different conditions that could be causing your problems besides cancer.
Sometimes a doctor will let you make payments. In the state where I live, people who don't have health insurance can sometimes qualify for a medical card depending on their income. Sometimes you can see a doctor at the county health department.
Thank you for your replies. I had my gallbladder out years ago and I don't have any insurance still scared. Also I just awoke and it is 3am and I am having terrible reflux right now. I take prilosec otc 2 x daily but the acid keeps coming. I feel awful. Also having upper stomache pains.
I'm sorry your feeling so bad-
I don't think you would have developed cancer in two years though, I think that comes from years and years of reflux, left untreated.
Try taking a PepcidAC or something like that before you go to sleep, I think its ok with the PPI your taking.
I sometimes take a PepcidAC if I'm feeling poorly, even though I am on Nexium.
And try changing your diet, and eating LESS, I have found that helps.
And of course not eating before you lay down.
Have to tried one of those wedge pillows to lift the top of your body, when you sleep?
Hi *******, thanks for your reply and reassurance. I have had reflux for a long time now, it wasn't until 2 years ago that I finally sought treatment but when they scoped me then they found stage 2 erosive esophagitis, at least no Barretts at that time. I used to use pepcid ac alot in the past but it does not help me. I am using zantac along with the prilosec otc but tonight I have no relief. I did not even eat much today so I am sure stress is causing the increase in acid but I wish the PPI would make it stop because the more acid I feel, the more I worry I have baretts or worse. My matress is elevated 6 inches. Right now my throat is burning and sore and my heartburn is back in full force. And the worst problem of all is dysphagia, I can only do applesauce, water right now and even those make me choke. I just wish I could get my Nexium. That healed my esophagus and stopped my reflux before. Thank you again
Hey, you know applesauce is really bad for us! Its one of the no no's on our food list. I don't know why since fresh apples are OK-
Check out the good foods for us and maybe replace apple sauce with that maybe a banana!
Hand in there, try the Zantac then at night
And really eat by the rules!
I hope you get some sleep!
Last edited by Mamasan2007; 01-11-2008 at 03:58 AM.
jeesh, I thought applesauce was okay. Dang it already! Bananas are a huge no no for me, don't know why but they have always given me bad heartburn. Really what the heck are we supposed to eat?? Especially when I MUST eat soft food. I can't exactly eat an apple...this is so awful. Actually today I don't even have to worry about soft food because I am even choking on water. I will be starving today but I am not going to go through the choking feeling. Does anyone have a loaded gun?!
In Sept 06 I was in your same boat. I wrote a post back in December of 07. I don't want to repeat my post so you can go back and read it if you want. the title is "Swallowing issues and anxiety". I had a reply from someone who had a scope recently. Her scope came back normal this person just had reflux issues. She asked her doc that if she continues to have problems should she come back every year for testing for barretts or the C word. He told her NO five years to come back. Her reply made me feel much better. I am on perscription prilosec becasue the over the counter does not work worth crap to me. I know its alot cheaper than nexium and it is working great. Maybe you could call your doc and get that.
I appreciate your reply and I read your post. I am so sorry for your loss. I cannot even imagine it. As far as this Gerd stuff, the thing is, you said you had a clean scope but I did not, and two years since the acid is back in full force and since I haven't been able to take Nexium, I can only imagine the new damage being done, actually I don't need to imagine it as it is happening to me and this time around it is much much worse, before, I didn't choke on food, didn't have ear or coughing problems and now I am having both of those. So I know the acid reflux is much worse and the fact that it is not being treated is making me worried of the damage. I may not have had barretts then but I surely would not be suprised if I have it now.
I know that you do not have insurance (I am very sorry for that) - but could you maybe afford a Drs. visit and ask for some samples of Nexium - maybe enough to get you through a month to see if that would help???
Thanks Vanessa, Yes, I called my fam doc today but they don't give out Nexium samples. I actually went to the er last week because I had unusual chest pain and they attributed it to my gerd of course and gave me a dose of Nexium! I was so mad because all they will give is the one dose and I told them that I didn't have insurance and could not afford it so I didn't know what good a single dose would do! So yes, those options are out. I am in the process of trying to get our state health care for low income families so God willing we will get that and then I can get my drugs!
After thinking about your post and reading the other reply's I recall someone I know not having health insurance and some of the pharmaceutical companies granting prescription medications for lower costs. I can't recall the name of the organization that I have seen advertise this on television.
Perhaps you can ask several pharmacies if they have knowledge of this program or can get you information in order to obtain the Nexium at a cheaper price. Maybe someone on these boards will read this and respond with the organizations name.
Just a thought.... hang in there, you are in my prayers. Please keep us posted on how you are doing.
Packerbacker - I definitely would not freak out. If you stop taking these meds or switch meds and dont watch your diet and change your lifestyle the symptoms can become severe. Do you know how many times I thought my throat burned so bad I had to be getting cancer at that very minute? ha Its not funny really. Anyhow, I would try to relax...bc stressing out is going to make it ten times worse! And go to your doc as soon as you can. I am sure you are fine and just having overactive symptoms to your gerd. Take care and keep us posted.
Thank you Jade and Stef, I am trying not to worry but I cannot swallow even mashed potatoes today. I have a feeling when I get scoped again, if I get insurance, that they will have found Barretts or worse. I feel like I went way to long without meds (because I felt better for awhile) and now it has done the worst damage. How many of you have this severe of swallowing and do not have Baretts? This is a nightmare for all of us.