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**Gerd and Chest Pressure? Please Help!**

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Old 04-12-2013, 12:05 PM   #1
Join Date: Apr 2013
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buffychick HB User
Cool **Gerd and Chest Pressure? Please Help!**

Hi Everyone!
I've been having some really annoying symptoms, and was hoping someome has had something similar and can relate.

I'm 30 years old, work out 4-6 days/week. I am 30lbs overweight, but most of that is due to the stress of nursing school. I avoid caffeine like the plague, don't smoke at all, and drink very moderately on occasion with friends.

I do have a history of Tachycardia, which I had an ablation for back in 2001. I've been pretty good since then, only suffer really annoying PVC's.

Since February of this year, I've been experiencing chest pressure and tightness. I can't seen to pinpoint what makes it worse or better: It occurs off and on 24/7, sometimes I feel it ALL DAY! I feel it in my upper chest, and sometimes it feels like there is tightness along the upper part of my stomach where my diaphragm is.

My doctor thought this was GERD related, and put me on 20mg of Prilosec. Unfortunately, this also causes some chest pain and dizziness to add to my symptoms, although they are not everyday. My doctor said if I can handle the symptoms, to keep taking it. So, I am still on my medication.

I've had a few "good" days, here and there, but I can't tell for sure if the medication is working or not. I just want this to go away!! Sometimes I feel a pressure underneath my sternum as well.

Of course, I thought this could be cardiac related: so had a stress echo, ekg, and Calcium CT scan of my heart: Showed Nothing! Which is great, because I was really worried about this. I think it's safe to say this is not cardiac related.

I am struggling with this a lot: I'm a nursing student and it's very hard to come to clinicals and take care of patients feeling this way.

Of note: I am at my highest weight ever. 5'4" 179lbs. I think my body is really not liking it, so I'm joining weight watchers and trying to work out more.......I think this extra weight could be exacerbating my symptoms, but not so sure.

I just want some relief! This is starting to make me feel isolated, because I don't want to go out and feel this chest tightness all the time. Not a good thing!

Can anyone relate? Or have any tips/suggestions on how to make this go away?

Thanks so much everyone.

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Old 04-17-2013, 03:21 PM   #2
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Re: **Gerd and Chest Pressure? Please Help!**

Hello, I sometimes suffer with the sort of chest pressure you describe and I have acid reflux. You're dead right to lose weight. I'm doing weight watchers and I'm almost down to my ideal weight and it's really helped.

The other thing is to watch what you eat. Everyone is different, but I can't eat chocolate, fried foods, or any dairy. I also eat much smaller meals. A big no no for people with acid reflux is alcohol. I've now stopped drinking any alcohol at all, it's the only way. Good luck with your nursing studies.

Old 04-17-2013, 06:38 PM   #3
Join Date: Apr 2013
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buffychick HB User
Re: **Gerd and Chest Pressure? Please Help!**

Thanks JanaJ! I really appreciate your comment. This is driving me crazy! It's like it's always there in one form or another........some days are pretty good, some days are awful.

I'm going to a Barium Swallow (Yuck) and a chest x-ray next week. I'm pretty sure this is GERD related, but will be happy to find out for sure.

In the meantime, tryin' to lay off the chocolate since that is my big weakness! It's so hard to diet when your in nursing school -tons of stress- but hopefully I can manage.

Thanks again!

Old 04-17-2013, 07:27 PM   #4
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Re: **Gerd and Chest Pressure? Please Help!**

Hi! I can sympathize with your problem. I have had acid reflux/GERD for years. I agree with you about weight loss being beneficial. I lost 18lbs a few years ago and my problem almost went away. Unfortunately, I gained it back and am having a hard time losing again.
I believe different people may have the same main symptoms but also individual symptoms as well. My trigger foods are spicy and fatty foods. Before I started researching, I didn't realize how much fatty foods played a part in my problem. Also who would think chocolate? I sure didn't, but once I started paying attention, I realized that chocolate does cause me discomfort. I eat it infrequently. Same with alcohol. I don't blame you for taking tests and making sure it isn't heart related with your history. Better to be safe - even though I know this illness can mimic heart attack symptoms at times.
I'm not sure why he wants you to keep on with the Prilosec when you feel it is not helping, but I'm not a doctor. I guess there must be a reason. I know that some meds help me better than others. I am now taking generic Zantac (Ranitidine) because it helps and also because it is cheap either at Walmart or now I get it free with my health insurance. I've also used baking soda when I've had an attack and not had anything at home to help (such as Maalox or Rolaids). The directions are on the box. I compare it to a natural alka-seltzer. It makes me burp and seems to ease the acid in my stomach.
I hope you find some answers soon. Best wishes and I applaud your career choice. Nursing is hard work.

Old 04-17-2013, 10:31 PM   #5
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Re: **Gerd and Chest Pressure? Please Help!**

Hello Buffychick, Sorry that you're so uncomfortable but I can also relate to your pain. Mine felt sharp in between the breast bone. I do have acid reflux and am currently taking Nexium. While I was waiting for the stomach scope and other tests, I avoided chocolate, coffee, all pop (other than soda water) tomato sauce (unless I added sugar to my own and let it boil, it reduces the acid) and especially shortening. Anything with shortening in it made my day miserable!!! If I ate out and the pain hit me, I would ask for a can of soda water, drink it straight out of the can. Once I had a few good "burps" I would start to feel better. They do say not to drink carbonated drinks but for some reason the plain soda water or Perrier did wonders for me. I started to drink warm milk with honey in it every night, which made me feel much better. Because I felt this unbearable pain, I avoided large meals, certain foods and stopped indulging in certain goodies. Without trying I managed to lose 8 lbs and I do feel a lot better. BTW, I am the same height and just dropped down to your weight. Best of luck with you and your studies.....

Old 04-20-2013, 04:54 PM   #6
Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: heredia, costa rica
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daddyincr HB User
Re: **Gerd and Chest Pressure? Please Help!**

you probably should lose weight for physical and psychological reasons which both affect your chest pressure.
i recently read that drinking 1/4 cup of aloe vera juice helps GERD. i suggest you
buy 100% organic with nothing else added. of course with this approach there are absolutely no side effects. best wishes.

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