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eaglei30 02-01-2015 12:48 PM

EGD scheduled in a couple days and worried about the risks
 
Hello, I have been battling acid reflux since I was about 22, and I am now 30. I have taken acid reducers and proton pump inhibitors off and on since. I have been trying to not use them so much, and rely on tums because I am not sure of the long term effects of these drugs and worry about it. I use Zegerid currently.. Sometimes I feel out of energy on it mentally after taking it everyday for about week. Because of this I will try to not take it for a few days until the burning comes back and take it again. I changed my diet and got off of them for a couple weeks and started doing well. But it seemed like the tums were only band-aiding the problem. I know I've needed an endoscopy for a few years now because I have never had it. I have been putting it off because Zegerid usually makes everything alright. This past September I was eating a sandwhich and it got stuck right before entering my stomach. Was really scary as it took a minute or two to go down. Drinking liquid didn't help as it just sat in my esophagus. I started taking the ppi again everyday and everything seemed to be alright. After getting off of them again recently, it happened again a few weeks ago eating a sandwhich. So I figured it's time to stop fulling around and get myself looked at internally. Being on the ppi's again it doesn't seem to happen so I feel like when the acid makes it's way up it swells down there and causes this issue.

My next worry is that the egd seems to have more risks than I would like. It really wasn't concerned with it as my cousin and grandma has gone through it. It wasn't until Joan Rivers passing, that I started getting myself worked up about especially the more research that I do. It seems flying in an airplane is safer as the risk of dying is 1/11million and the risk of dying due to an egd is 1/5000 to 1/9000, based off my research, which is about the same risk as driving your car around. When I think of myself driving on the expressway and how many idiots are zooming around, I am thankful that I am in control of the driver seat and cautious about avoiding these people. Relating the risks of an egd to the similarities of driving makes me feel there is a higher risk than I would have liked there to be. So now I am very nervous about the procedure.

I have asked if I could do it without sedation, but the receptionist seemed to convince me that's the only way it is with sedation. She said they use propofol because they call all the way down to the bottom of your stomach. I feel like being under sedation ups the risk much more as you're not in control of your breathing. I have read that sometimes the vocal chords when touched will automatically clamp shut, cutting off air supply. So if close monitoring is not taken to your breathing, this is also another risk.. So you're relying on someone you don't know to make sure you're breathing..

I feel like maybe I am being over the top but the things you hear lately about "routine" procedures are more alarming than ever..


Anyone have any thoughts, comments, or suggestions on this? I really would appreciate any advice as I have not been sedated since getting my Wisdom teeth out 12 yrs ago.

Thanks!

vachilly 02-01-2015 02:58 PM

Re: EGD scheduled in a couple days and worried about the risks
 
First, let me say that you are on track about avoiding the PPI's. From my own experience, they were the cause of exacerbating by health problem. I had some pain in my mid-section and seemed to have relux. The symptoms became so bad, that I could barely eat anything. I had an EGD, and they didn't seem to find a problem. I then had the monitor that you wear around to test your reflux, and it showed that I had no problem with reflux. Unfortunately, I had already been on PPI's for several weeks prior to the tests, so you really couldn't make a determination. I saw 3 different GI doctors and they all mis-diagnosed my condition, until I was in very serious condition. Finally, they performed the test that determines how well your gall bladder functions. (All 3 physicians said that I didn't have a gall bladder problem.) My gall bladder ejection rate was at 8%. I had gall bladder surgery and within 6 weeks was regaining my health. Having said this and read everything available relating to reflux, etc, here are my thoughts.
GI docs give you PPI's. They minimize the acid in your stomach. Unfortunately, your stomach needs acid to digest your food. You also need acid to signal your stomach when to close off your esophagus so that it won't let acid into your throat. I went through 4 months of visits to the ER and hospitalization, because I didn't find the right GI doc. Do your research carefully, before choosing a GI doctor. Tums are the best answer right now. As for the EGD, I wouldn't want to have it again, but if you are in serious distress, it is the best test out there. Perhaps you have a hiatal hernia? The GI doctor business is booming because most of us don't do our homework before seeing them. Often, once you see them, it seems you can't get away from them. Again, I would do my best to find the right doctor.


[QUOTE=eaglei30;5343100]Hello, I have been battling acid reflux since I was about 22, and I am now 30. I have taken acid reducers and proton pump inhibitors off and on since. I have been trying to not use them so much, and rely on tums because I am not sure of the long term effects of these drugs and worry about it. I use Zegerid currently.. Sometimes I feel out of energy on it mentally after taking it everyday for about week. Because of this I will try to not take it for a few days until the burning comes back and take it again. I changed my diet and got off of them for a couple weeks and started doing well. But it seemed like the tums were only band-aiding the problem. I know I've needed an endoscopy for a few years now because I have never had it. I have been putting it off because Zegerid usually makes everything alright. This past September I was eating a sandwhich and it got stuck right before entering my stomach. Was really scary as it took a minute or two to go down. Drinking liquid didn't help as it just sat in my esophagus. I started taking the ppi again everyday and everything seemed to be alright. After getting off of them again recently, it happened again a few weeks ago eating a sandwhich. So I figured it's time to stop fulling around and get myself looked at internally. Being on the ppi's again it doesn't seem to happen so I feel like when the acid makes it's way up it swells down there and causes this issue.

My next worry is that the egd seems to have more risks than I would like. It really wasn't concerned with it as my cousin and grandma has gone through it. It wasn't until Joan Rivers passing, that I started getting myself worked up about especially the more research that I do. It seems flying in an airplane is safer as the risk of dying is 1/11million and the risk of dying due to an egd is 1/5000 to 1/9000, based off my research, which is about the same risk as driving your car around. When I think of myself driving on the expressway and how many idiots are zooming around, I am thankful that I am in control of the driver seat and cautious about avoiding these people. Relating the risks of an egd to the similarities of driving makes me feel there is a higher risk than I would have liked there to be. So now I am very nervous about the procedure.

I have asked if I could do it without sedation, but the receptionist seemed to convince me that's the only way it is with sedation. She said they use propofol because they call all the way down to the bottom of your stomach. I feel like being under sedation ups the risk much more as you're not in control of your breathing. I have read that sometimes the vocal chords when touched will automatically clamp shut, cutting off air supply. So if close monitoring is not taken to your breathing, this is also another risk.. So you're relying on someone you don't know to make sure you're breathing..

I feel like maybe I am being over the top but the things you hear lately about "routine" procedures are more alarming than ever..


Anyone have any thoughts, comments, or suggestions on this? I really would appreciate any advice as I have not been sedated since getting my Wisdom teeth out 12 yrs ago.

Thanks![/QUOTE]

eaglei30 02-01-2015 03:26 PM

Re: EGD scheduled in a couple days and worried about the risks
 
Thanks for the response vachilly,

Sorry to hear your issues, but glad you've found the root of the problem. I am not sure if 8% is bad but what is the norm?

Also, I have to stay within my network for insurance, and the three that are local seem decent. I checked the doctor's review and the one that I will be working with have been in the field for 36 yrs, and have limited reviews (4 reviews on one site and 2 on the other) but the one's given are pretty good. So hopefully, this doctor can give me some answer and resolves my ongoing problem.

vachilly 02-01-2015 09:50 PM

Re: EGD scheduled in a couple days and worried about the risks
 
The normal ejection is from 35 to 75 for gall bladder function. I wish you much luck. I'm sure your EGD will probably go well. Most of them do.

eaglei30 02-07-2015 11:37 PM

Re: EGD scheduled in a couple days and worried about the risks
 
Finished the procedure. Was nerveracking but was over pretty quick. Propofol is some crazy stuff. I surprisingly didn't have a sore throat and I am currently awaiting results to see if I have bacteria in the stomach. I was told everything looked alright except I had a ring in my esophagus, so a balloon was used to stretch my esophagus and fix the ring.

My stomach seems a little sensitive after (had this done friday) and it's a little sore where they dilated the esophagus. Anyone who have had their esophagus dilated feel a little sore after?

starling80 02-24-2015 01:33 PM

Re: EGD scheduled in a couple days and worried about the risks
 
Hope you're feeling all the way back to normal by now. Just wanted to say, I had an EGD done without sedation or throat spray yesterday (I didn't want to stick around extra time for recovery) and it went amazingly well. I didn't even ask to try without sedation until the nurse was prepping my IV - she had the doctor stop in and he agreed to let me try it. Was just about figuring out the right breathing technique, and then I completely controlled my gag/retching reflex for the last half of the procedure. They were impressed, to say the least! :)

My throat was mildly sore last night and this morning and I think my stomach might've been also mildly sore, but possibly from the strong gag / retching reaction I had as the scope initially went down my esophagus (sore muscles??). Once in my tummy and I got the breathing thing figured out...I almost got bored, lol...and I have a VERY strong gag reflex.

Something I wanted to share for those that struggle with reflux is that I've found (by accident) something that works, although it is also a prescription drug. Carafate / Sucralfat is used to coat the esophagus, stomach, and/or upper small bowel when people have irritations, ulcers, etc. I had upper abdominal pain that caused my GP to think I have bile induced gastritis (I had my gallbladder removed in 2009) and started taking Carafate before each meal on his instruction. Two months later, and I had no remaining pain or reflux or even the mild "IBS" that had been lurking for years.

So...I stopped taking it, thinking "cured??" Pain came back in 2 months, so I started up the Carafate again and...poof, the pain and reflux went away again after 2-3 weeks. This instigated the visit yesterday to get scoped (EGD), but that came back 100% normal from esophagus to stomach to upper small bowel. No scarring or irritation in my esophagus really surprised me, because until starting the Carafate, I had been a chronic reflux sufferer, taking PPIs (OTC Prilosec and Nexium) for over 10 years. Daily. Since taking Carafate as-needed due to abdominal discomfort, the reflux has stopped and apparently my esophagus is perfectly healthy (as of yesterday midday).

Good luck with your results and ongoing management of symptoms. I'd definitely discuss whether Carafate can play a role for you...it's a low risk, low side-effect substance. Mostly just have to make sure you get your fiber and water intake up to avoid the primary side effect of constipation! Cost for me has been approximately $20/month when I take 3 per day, but much less when I don't take with every meal. I don't believe I'll personally need to take full daily dosage most of the time.


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