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Swallowing Problems

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Old 07-17-2012, 11:23 PM   #1
Join Date: Mar 2008
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lilacs22 HB User
Question Swallowing Problems

Hi Everyone, I have a long story but just going to condense it here for the sake of not putting anyone to sleep. Even though if you are like me and have fibromyalgia, you would love for someone to help you to get to sleep What I would like to ask is a question for those with swallowing problems. I have had swallowing problems on and off for years, way before I was diagnosed with fibro. However, recently I began to have problems with liquids which was never an issue. Not only am I having this problem with liquids, but I make a loud gulping/swallowing sound when I swallow, on liquids only (this sound is heard by others). It takes an effort to get the liquids down and there is always this loud swallowing sound even when i am sipping the drink. Went to my doctor cuz it really freaked me out and he has me going for a bunch of tests, having another swallow study (cookie swallow some know it as), barium esphagus x-rays, and then wants me to go to my gastro doctor for an endoscopy (yuck!). He has me scared hootless to say the least. I would LOVE to hear from anyone who has had this problem and what seemed to be the cause. Thank you and soft hugs to all

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Old 07-18-2012, 12:25 AM   #2
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Re: Swallowing Problems

I also have fibro and upper digestive issues, although my story is a little different.

Endoscopy is no sweat, I've had three. They put a needle in your hand, you take a nap, you wake up and it's all over and you feel fine, just a little groggy from the sedative. I had no pain.

There are two main causes of swallowing problems: physical obstruction and muscle problem.

If there is a physical obstruction, the endoscopy will find it. The most common obstruction is a ridge or stricture in the esophagus, and it can be treated by dilating it. The dilation can be done with the endoscope.

If you have muscle weakness, the swallowing study should identify it. Anatomy digression: Normal swallowing requires a whole lot of muscles to work together, in your throat and down the esophagus. They contract like a wave, pushing the food down into the stomach. The lower esophageal sphincter must open to let the food in, then slam shut behind it. If these muscles are too weak or just not correctly coordinated, swallowing problems can occur. If this is your problem, there are various medicines, some of them also used for fibro, that may help improve the neuromuscular situation.

For now, small sips. Thick soft foods like yogurt may actually be easier to swallow than clear liquids.

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lilacs22 (07-18-2012)
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