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Acid Reflux / GERD Message Board

Acid Reflux / GERD Board Index

For the last approx. 20 years (started when I was still working, I have now been retired for about 5 years) I have had what feels like a small volcano in my stomach and the very lower part of my esophagus (sternum). I have zero problem with anything coming up in my upper esophagus or vomiting, etc. and I have ZERO other digestive problems, i.e no diarrhea or constipation - am regular as clockwork.

This burning happens almost every night (or any other time that I go to SLEEP, i.e. is not necessarily limited to night). I know this because on a few RARE times (do NOT normally have any problem falling to sleep) when I could not go to sleep and laid there in my recliner all night watching TV, that I had ZERO burning until when I finally drifted off to sleep at about 5 or 6 o'clock in the morning and then just shortly after I fell asleep there is the burning.

When this burning happens every night, it can start any where from 1/2 hour after I fall asleep to about 2 hours after I fall asleep but the average time for it to happen is probably about 1 & 1/2 hours after falling asleep. Let me say that NONE of the medicines that any of the doctors that I have been to over the last 20 years have been effective in stopped this problem. They have tired all of the available PPIs and most of the other things like Zantac, etc., etc. Some of the medicines (like Zantac 300) actually made it much worse.

The only way that I have managed to survive this is that when the burning wakes me up, I have to get up and eat a small bowl of milk and cereal. Eating the milk and cereal only gives me temporary relief for maybe an hour or 2 and then the burning is right back IF I fall back asleep. Let me emphasize that when I am NOT asleep (which is of course mostly during daytime hours) I have ZERO problem with this "VOLCANO" in my stomach, other than from where it burned my lower esophagus the previous sleep period. The previous sleep periods burning, usually slowly dissipates during my next waking period/day. However, if I don't wake up and get up very early in the mornings (say about 5 or 6 o'clock), it can burn my esophagus so bad that it can affect my breathing.

Also, let me mention that when I am awakened by this burning that it is ALWAYS (without fail) accompanied by me having a bad/stressful dream. I have mentioned this to the doctors and they don't really seem to know if the dreams are a cause or an effect of the burning.

One doctor suggested that this might be BILE reflux instead of acid reflux but none of the treatments that she tried had any affect EXCEPT one. She gave me some CARAFATE and it worked great from the very first night that I started taking it (was able to sleep about 5 to 6 hours before the burning would start) and it worked for almost exactly 2 weeks and then it just stopped working just a quickly as it started - continued to take it for a good while after it stopped working but after the 2 week period, it no longer had any effects, burning just like I was not taking it.

Does anyone have any ideas as to what might be the cause of this strange problem I am having ???

Please feel free to ask questions if you have them.


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