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Acid Reflux / GERD Message Board

Acid Reflux / GERD Board Index

I am so glad to see others have been able to read this thread and benefitted from my experience. It has now been a year since I stopped taking Aciphex (PPI). In hindsight, I have to say that it took longer than two months for the rebound to go away. At first it was unbearable, and I spent most of my waking hours dealing with it. I took Zantac round the clock and tried a lot of alternative methods, including Apple Cider Vinegar and many other remedies you have seen chronicled here.

I honestly have to say that things did not begin to settle down for me until approximately five months post PPI's. I can now have several days of no heartburn and then (probably because I forget and slip a bit with my diet) can have a couple of days when I have to work hard at it again and may feel nauseous or experience heartburn.

I used ACV for a while and I think it helped some, but I honestly could not keep it up because I did not like the taste and it was just aversive for me to use long term. I use vinegar in my salad dressing and I think there is something in vinegar in general that helps with digestion. But apple cider vinegar may be something that can help some people go through rebound. I used it for two or three months and then slowly discontinued it. I just hate its taste.

This is what I am still doing/using a year later:

1) I have DGL in my purse at all times and pop one or two whenever I feel heartburn. You are supposed to allow it to dissolve in your mouth and let it gently trickle down your throat. DGL does not taste great, but I have become accustomed to it and it is user friendly (as opposed to the vinegar which has to be diluted with water, sipped through a straw, etc).

2) If the heartburn does not go away within thirty minutes or so, I'll take a 75 mg of Zantac. I probably now take Zantac once or twice a week, usually at night.

3) I eat smaller meals and try to watch my carbs carefully. Carbs tend to give me heartburn. Green peppers, caffeine, chocolate, and alcohol do as well. So I avoid and limit all of those. I still eat bread and some pasta but in very small quantities. I have also become accustomed to decaffeinated coffee. I used to be a coffeeaholic, and I am now caffeine-free. I forgot to mention, I also buy crystalized ginger at the healthfood store and chew two small pieces every night after my evening meal. I think it helps speed up digestion a bit. Again, it is one of those remedies that does not hurt, is not expensive and may actually help a bit from what I have read and others have posted.

4) I take a combination of calcium, magnesium and vitamin D3 in liquid form twice a day. I find the liquid calcium soothing to my stomach, and I need the calcium anyway. I buy this at the local healthfood store (I guess we cannot mention names here). I also take magnesium (500 mg divided into two equal doses morning and night when I take my calcium supplement). From reading these posts, magnesium has helped some people, and I figured it can't hurt me if taken in moderate amounts. It also helps keep me regular.

5) I try to not think about heartburn and not let it run my life. I deal with it when I experience it, and don't think about it when I don't. I know it is hard to do that when you are in the middle of rebound, but I think things settle down and get better for most of us after a few months.

People have lived with heartburn and reflux for centuries before PPI's were invented, and not everyone died of esophageal cancer. I think it is important for all of us to do our research before we start on these miracle drugs. I lived in ignorant bliss for three years dutifuly taking my Aciphex every morning and ended up with advanced osteopenia in both hips due to calcium malabsorbption. In hindsight, I should have done my research, not blindly trusted my doctor, and tried other ways to deal with the heartburn. I am convinced that PPI's, though excellent medications, are not designed for long term use, and have not been proven to be safe for long term use.

Rebound is a very real phenomenon, though my family doctor had never heard of it when I mentioned my symptoms (she just thought I needed to increase my dose of PPI and add a biphosphonate to treat the osteopenia). This is the opposite of what I have done. Not only did I get off the PPI, but I also refused to take Actonel. That is a whole other topic worthy or an entirely new thread. But let the customer beware before they start taking one of those medications designed to treat osteoporosis.


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