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Acid Reflux / GERD Message Board

Acid Reflux / GERD Board Index

Justin--Don't ya just love our health care system???!!! I realize that our medical professionals don't have a crystal ball to give an accurate diagnosis every time--but PLEEEEASE, give us patients a break! I hear you when you say you don't want to "experiment" around for 6 months, and then what? I was diagnosed last October with LPR-I had absolutely NO common symptoms of reflux disease, no heartburn what so ever, have NEVER had problems with my digestion system and always have been able to eat whatever I want without any difficutly at all. I am very active, exercise regularly, and no way overweight. I was VERY, VERY skeptible of the diagnosis.

Just to let you know my experiences with my diagnosis of LPR for comparison to what you have. My problem started out as a feeling of a "hair" tickling the back of my throat. I am an avid gardener so I thought I just had an allergic reaction to some pollen or something. The sensation progressed to feeling like my throat was coated with "peach fuzz", from there I felt like I had a "hair ball" stuck in the back on my throat. This took a period of about 3 weeks. By that time I was starting to get really worried as I have also had a small tumor in my thyroid a year previously that needed to be removed surgically. I called my ENT (who is also a thyroid cancer specialist) and had to wait 6 weeks for an appointment! During that 6 weeks time the "lump in the throat" just continued to get worse to where I felt like there was a grapefruit stuck in there! Needless to say, my fears and worries about thyroid cancer continued to increase! My ENT doc did a scope down my nose and found redness and inflammation to the throat and vocal cords, with my other symptoms, he diagnosed me with LPR. I was greatly relieved that he found no sign of a tumor etc. but he also sent me in for a complete throat/thyroid ultrasound just to be sure. (everything checked out fine) He put me on Prevacid 30 mg. 2x day for LPR. Of course the insurance companies don't want to pay out benefits for 2x a day. Now I had a battle with the insurace company to pay benefits as they felt that 1x a day was enough for "heartburn". (unilke you, at least I have benefits). I continued on PPI's 2x a day and did not get ANY relief of symptoms until about March, or approximately 6 months. During that 6 months time, I continued to be wary that it really was LPR that was bothering me. I must admit, sometimes I still wonder if maybe it couldn't be something else even though the PPI therapy has really helped. When I did start to feel better I contacted my doc's office to see what I was supposed to do from there forward. He was not available so I spoke with his assistant who is a resident, and she took my prescription down from 2x a day to 1x a day. BIG MISTAKE!!!! I don't think I got significantly worse, but the progess I was making stopped completely. After a few weeks I called the doctor back, had to start over with the insurance hassel again (which delayed me another several weeks), and got back on 2x a day of Nexium this time in late May. (insurance dropped Prevacid as a preferred med). I think I am again making positive progress.

Sorry this has gotten so long, but want to give you enough info to make a good comparison to your situation. I don't even know if my situation and yours are the similar. Something that that has helped me is the addition of digestive enzymes to my diet. I started taking enzymes about a month ago in addition to the PPI's, and can happily say I am feeling almost back to normal. I also eat a lot of yogurt, and take acidolophilis supplements from the health food store. If nothing else, I think these supplements really support my digestive system to work at it's optimum level. Both are fairly inexpensive, and easy to obtain--no insurance hassels! I also found that chewing gum was very soothing to me for the irritation from the LPR. I have also watched my diet, though I can honestly say I find no significant difference to the LPR symptoms regardless of what I eat. Propping my bed up as is suggested for reflux disease did nothing for me, other than make me uncomfortable causing me to loose sleep and thus add fatigue to my problem.

Perhaps it would be beneficial for you to start on PPI therapy with the OTC Prilosec, but also continue your search for another cause of your problems. If it is LPR, the sooner you start PPI therapy, the sooner you will likely feel better. Unfortunately, for me, and for most LPR sufferers, this is a very long and drawn out process. Being in the dark about whether this is really what's wrong with you or not just adds to the frustration. At least with these boards you are not alone, and we can all share our excperiences to help each other. Good Luck!

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