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Acid Reflux / GERD Message Board

Acid Reflux / GERD Board Index

I wanted to share that my experiment on myself with Vitamin D3 sublingual drops has worked very well. Not 100% but pretty close. I think I may not have taken enough D3 nor gotten my D score high enough as I continue to improve. I got my D score to around 60 this last June 2012 but then when I tested again in Oct 2012 it fell to 58 and I could feel more acid vapor burn coming back. Not severe but I could feel it slowly coming back. So in Oct 2012 I went from 4,000 IU a day to 6,000 IU of D3 drops under my tongue for maxium absorbtion. I've been taking 6,000 IU a day now for about 4 weeks now and again the acid vapor burn of LPR has faded.

I plan to get to a score of 80 (top of normal range) and try to keep it there and see how I feel. I suspect that LPR (the failure of the upper spincter to close off and protect the upper throat from small vapors of the stomach) is due to a slow and steady progressive relaxation of the spinchters muscle of the upper throat (UES). Maybe a better word is that the spinchter muscle goes "limp" and doesn't close off the normal small vapors that escape the stomach in everyone. I suspect its due to lack of the sunshine hormone D.

What I've read and gleaned from hundreds of articles and pieced together is that the D hormone is made on the skin by the sun. But not all sunshine produces the right kind of D producing rays. The latitude on the planet makes a big difference in how much D one makes on the skin. There are also many variables on how much each individual needs. Some of the variables: the color of your skin affects how much D you make; the heavier you are the more D you need to maintain health; if one lives at or above the 37th latitude on the planet you simply don't make enough D hormone on your skin to maintain good health; the quality of the sun rays only produce D on the skin certain times of the year.

For example: I live at the 38 latitude on the planet. I used a sun chart to find when the sun in my latitude makes some D on my skin. It turns out its only between mid-March to mid Sept of each year. So for example if its a warm day in Oct, I still don't make any D on my skin in the sun because its not the right type of sun ray. Its important to be aware of the latitude, on the planet, you are in. Most populations on the planet need to supplement unless they are closer to the equator.

Other variables: being inside alot. Our modern society keeps us indoors watching TV or on computers or simply working inside all day. One other thing, if you take D you really should test every 3 months your D levels and calcium levels. When you get to your desired D level, testing at the end of summer and at the end of winter, is best, so you can see your levels and judge what you need. And finally, your age has a lot to do with how much D you make. As one approaches 50 years old the ability to make D dimishes as much as 75%. This leaves us wide open to terrible health problems.

Remember Drs generally practice medicine by treating the symptom not the cause of the illness. And they generally don't receive education on D hormone and its need in the human body. Lets hope this changes with time.

I've never been tested for D levels until I requested it last Aug 2011. That's a very sad state of my medical care. It should be the first thing tested when I go into the Dr. It has everything to do with my health.

Also another thing I've studied up on is the need for B12. Its really important. From all that I have read, I deduce that one's score should be around 800 or so. But a great deal of the population has real low scores. Here in the US our Drs don't give us B12 until we go under a score of 200 and that's if your lucky to have a Dr that tests you on B12. I read that in Europe Drs start you on B12 when you hit a score of 500. I'm still learning as I go. I never realized how important these two core needs are, especially as you age. And eating lots a raw dark greens! I've added walnuts and almonds to my diet too!

I also make sure I take a probiotic. Together the 3 of these have helped me so much restore my quality of life. I'm enjoying all types of foods. I still shy away from garlic and tomatoe sauce but once and while I ingest them by accident when I go out and last 4 weeks I don't have bad experiences anymore. The higher my D score goes to 80 the more stable my condition becomes. It continues to be an experiment for me but I hope sharing this can be of some help to others.

I've read that 65 is the D score the body likes to be at but because I have LPR I'm experimenting and going to try to get to 80 and see how I feel.

Please let me know how you are all doing. It is so gratifying to know when someone is allievated of the horrible searing pain of LPR. It was not that long ago that I burned just drinking water and now I eat just about everything. I am beginning to think LPR is the atrophy of the muscles of the body that present first in the esophogus. In addition to LPR I had incontinence starting, horrible joint pain in my shoulders, couldn't lift my arms, swollen wrists and all disappeared in two days with Vit D.

But the LPR has taken longer to go fade away. D is not an over night cure for LPR. I think when one's Vitamin D tank is empty it must take a long time for D to build up. Also, I may have done it too slow. I was careful in my dosing, as I had to do it by myself. My Drs told me last Aug 2011 there was nothing more they could do to help me. I guess having a chronic condition, like LPR, gets you a swift kick out the Dr's door. I didn't expect it. I had asked to go to a research hospital for a second opinion but I was denied. So I continue to pay my monthly premium and I have no Dr overseeing my condition. I'm directing my own care. Its truely laughable.

Keep in touch and I do hope this helps...eew
Greetings guys!

All my problems started a few months ago after a few stressful days. I believe I have a LPR as PPIs don't really help me and I never had a heartburn just some chest pains sometimes but no burn. Until recently I realized that it wasn't my stomach that felt like burning but it was my throat (I realized it after concentrating on the pain).

So I had my vitamin B12 levels checked and it appears that they are "normal" 367.70 pg/ml and the ref. values are between 184-878 I live in Europe.

I started taking 7000IU of Vitamin D3 drops under the tongue as suggested here but have yet to find a lab where they can check my levels.

I'am also planning on taking 250mg of Calcium citrate after every meal again as suggested here.

I've also noticed that I'am constantly anxious and during the most stressful days the reflux becomes worse. I've been wondering is there any problem if I keep taking my D3 drops and start taking Calcium citrate and possibly Vitamin B complex because as it looks my levels aren't that high.
Hi everyone! Lprguy, I can't speak for everyone, but the anxiety I had was not anxiety, it was a searing throat burning on the inside. The throat tissues are very thin and when the acid vapor burns through the first and only layer of the throat its burning on the nerves of the throat that go up into the head and down the arms and legs. In my humble opinion, because I've actually healed 98% percent, the so called "anxiety" has gone away. What I was feeling was burning to death.

Also, I found that calcium citrate made the situation worse in the beginning years. I found that when I stopped calcium citrate pills it helped. But what I didn't realize at the time was that those calcium citrate pills had the little bit of Vit D that I was getting. It wasn't until after my surgery and stumbling onto hormone D that I realized one of the reasons I got worse after the fundoplication was that I got no Vitamin D at all! So being already low in D and then stopping it was a disaster especially after surgery. The little bit I got in the Calcium citrate I stopped because the citrate burned. Anyone with GERD/LPR should never take citrate of any kind. And you have watch the medications you take. Many of them cause more acid to pour into the stomach. Instead, if you want to take calcium take calcium carbonate. But don't over do it if you are on D. I read that somewhere between 700 and 1000 is what one should take in calcium. But not over that amount. But ask your Dr.

In my humble opinion, my experience is that, "the anxious" feeling is just the throat reacting to the searing burn of the acid vapor getting past the UES. Drs sometimes interpret this as the patient needing counseling and anxiety medicine. Now that my throat has healed 98% I realize I was just burning to death. I didn't have anxiety. And it makes me livid when I think about it as I put total confidence in my Drs and they knew less than I did on this particular "illness".

There may be several reasons for LPR developing. I'm always trying to connect the dots. Some people on these forums actually have very decent Vit D levels and still have LPR. And others have tried Vit D and it has helped. For me Vit D was life saving. I didn't think I could go on with the type of pain I was having. It was unbearable and Vit D3 drops under my tongue helped so much. I'm not "cured" but I feel most of the time "like" I am! I hope this helps. Hang in there and don't give up. There is always a chance you will find what works for you. I'm living proof.
Mrs. JBM, really hard to say if its Vit D levels for you. I just read Johnah's posting and his D is real high and still has LPR. Ask you Dr for a Vitamin D and B12 test. Study Vit D and B12. Read the symptoms. Talk to your Dr.

What struck me about your post is many similarities we have. I'm 60 years old right now. I avoided the sun for 40 years. At the time I stumbled on to vitamin D articles I was suffering from severe joint pain, arms that I could not lift, incontinence really coming on, and swelling of my wrists and ankles. When I took stairs it was a struggle to get up them. And the LPR pain was so severe inspite of a fundoplication in May 2010.

The moment I took Vitamin D3 drops under my tongue the joint pain, arms sockets so painful I couldn't lifet them, incontinence and swell ing of the wrists and ankles went away! I was stunned! And the LPR started to slowly...very slowly go away. But it took time for D levels to come up. Over a year and I'm still working on getting them up.

The only thing I can think of for Johnah, is I wonder if too much D can cause one to go in the opposite direction of feeling better, that too much D can be bad as too little and can make one have the same type of symptoms as not having enough.

That is why I'm careful when I take D3. Its a hormone and like any hormone you want to take enough but not too much. I often wonder if I should have upped my D to get faster results on the LPR but I was careful to stay in a range that I calculated was safe for me. I had to do it by myself as my Drs told me there was nothing more they could do for me. So I had to guesstimate. I did a great deal of research and found an article that recommended 35 IU x body weight. But I was careful and calculated how much D I was getting in my food and sun (only during the months of mid-April to mid-Sept in my latitude) and I subtracted 1,000 IU off that sum to get what I guesstimated I should take. And I test every 3 months. I can emphasize that enough. I don't just take D without constant testing. I'm going to push my D score closer to 80 to see how I feel. I suspect in my case, the D has helped the UES function better. The UES is a muscles and Vit D is suppose to strenghthen muscles.

When I fell to a score of 58 I could feel some of the acid vapors starting to burn a bit more. So now that I've upped my D to 6,000 IU I feel better and have more normal life. But I will not let my D score go beyond 80. I'll have to see how I feel when I get to 80 as to wether I feel good with LPR or if it goes in the other direction drop it back closer to 65. All I know is that I'm so much better.

Also take a B12 test. Its important. A good score is beteen 800-1,000. As we approach 50's B12 drops and so does our ability to absorb the nutrients in our food and we begin to slowly develope symptoms. Dropping scores of B12 begins to show in subtle symptoms developing and it causes all kinds of health issues at the lower scores. Right now my B12 is 375. I take a small dose of B12 Methl' drops under my tongue to try to bring up the my B score and I take medical probiotics of 9 billion a day.

Talk to your Dr. Hopefully you have a well informed one who will help you diagnois the actual problem and not treat just the symptoms. I remember when I took high doses of PPIs it did nothing for severe LPR and in fact I got really weak dead feeling in my legs and just felt sick all over. It was an awaful experience. And did nothing but make my LPR worse. Maybe that is the difference with some of our experiences. Some people improve with PPIs and others PPIs does nothing to allievate the LPR symptoms.
Dear Johnah and Mrs JBM: Each of you are experiences are the very same things I went through. Its really hard to have incredible pain of acid reflux up on the tender single layer of throat that burns through on your throat nerves and to find oneself with Drs, for whatever the reason, don't really know how to treat it. They try but LPR is different.

I could be very wrong but from all my research, but I suspect it is the Upper Esophogeal Sphincter not closing off the stomach vapor as it should. Drs use lower level acid reducers and PPIs. My Drs in 2009 quickly graduated me from the acid reducers to PPIs. Finally I was put on the purple pill at very high doses. It did nothing for me. And I felt sick on them. Real weak. My legs felt like lead weights. From what I've read PPIs shut down the acid pumps in the stomach. That acidis really important and breaks down the food and gives our cells nutrition. Basically I feel that it slowly starves your body's cells as you aren't getting the nutrition you need. It inhibits the B12/intrinsic factor and the more I read, I was terrified. Low B12 causes neurological problems. But then the terror becomes what does one do to stop the burning?

My first GI, told me that the PPIs gave me pnuemonia that antibiotics wouldn't get rid of. He recommended a fundoplication and did a PH test which came out a score of 40. From what I understand 40 is a fairly high count of acid above the Lower Esphogeal spinchter. The surgery came and went and I retired and moved to another region. I burned to death 10x worse after surgery and I had no Drs established. I tried to work with my existing Drs for 5 months inspite of the move but the travel to see them was impossible as I was deterioriating steadily. I went into the ER room 5 months later and saw a ER Dr who had no idea what LPR was and treated me for anxiety. What a nightmare it was. I told them on a ER visit that I couldn't bear the throat/head/ear/neck pain anymore. Instead of a ENT they called a Psyh Dr for me. And I went to two or 3 appointments and finally insisted that I didn't have anxiety I was in horrible head/neck/throat/ear pain. Finally got a new GI that literally mocked me and mocked all my answers to her questions. I relayed what I was feeling...the searing burn and she yelled and mocked me that she never heard of such a thing. I was devasted. I began to question my own reality. But I quietly kept reseaching inspite of unbearable pain.

When I finally got into a new ENT in my new retirement region he scoped my throat and was stunned at how burned my throat was and said I had to have a biospy right away as he felt I could have cancer from the acid burning through the tissues since 2009. I believe it was even longer that that and could have been as far back as 2007 when I went in for severe unexplainable stuffed up nose in the mornings. What I have figured out since, was that I had a mild form of LPR since 2007. But it became very severe in July 2009.

I demanded a new GI when the ENT found that my throat seared. I did not want a GI who mocked me while I was giving her the best description I could of what was hurting. The new GI at least apologized and told me quietly that they believed me now. But that was little comfort as she told me they didn't know what else to do for me. She tried Carafate. I still burned to death. The months passed. I did my very best to make it work but to no avail. I began on my own to take high doses of probitoics. Of everything that gave me a little relief probiotics did. To find the answer to why it works might give us a hint about what causes LPR. I'd say it gave me about a 30% relief from the searing pain. But a burn is a burn and it was miserable because I was suffering. I couldn't imagine going through life in so much pain.

But April 2011 I asked my new GI if I could to go outside to a research hospital and my GI and the regional GI made me wait till Aug 2011 to give me an answer...they said they would not pay for me to go to an outside Dr for an opinion. They told me I could go if I wanted to pay for it. It was devasting as I had no where to go and was so desperate from pain.

But by this time I knew enough about my condition to know that my UES, a small sphincter muscle, had gone "limp" or developed some atrophy for some reason and it was not closing off my stomach acid vapors that rise. The fundoplication surgery appears to have done some good from what my second new GI said. My acid above my LES went from a score of 40 to .4 so there was a great deal of improvement but those darn vapors where still escaping up my throat.

I came home from the Dr that day quite despondent. I sat at my computer and typed in "what strengthens muscles" and up popped some articles. Among them were some on Vitamin D. The more I read the more I thought it could give me some relief. And it has. I have my quality of life back. It's not a perfect cure but I'm so grateful to have found something that has given me excellent relief. It took a year of taking it to feel better but I still am experimenting and going to try to get to a D score of 80 to see if I can get a "perfect" result.

If I get worse I'll drop back to a score of 65. That's were I'm at. It has changed the way I look at things. Just eating a simple meal is such a great joy for me. I can do simple normal things now that I could bearly push myself to do because of the severe pain. I did alot of pertending and dying inside from pain. I couldn't sit for long due to the pain and I would pretend to use the powder room to walk off the pain. It made family life terrible because you can't have a life in horrible pain. And my Drs never "got it" really. I had a severe form of LPR that made bearing the pain almost impossible and I never really saw or felt compassion. And no one ever addressed my this day I still feel quite at a loss as to how a patient could be made to feel so abandoned. I asked for a support group and my Drs looked at me like I was asking something ridiculous. That is why I keep coming back to share as these forums and the people who shared got me through some really tough moments.

I'm still carry a private worry of "what if it comes back?" But I hope that Vitamin D will help me the rest of my life.
just wanted to mention that I found Calcium citrate to cause me severe burning. When I have to, I use Calcium Carbonate (Tums). (I read that people with GERD/LPR should not use any citrates...they burn! I also found that I burned horrible on anything with nitrates.) To get my calcium I'm trying to do more smoothies with a banana and lots of raw greens like lettice and swiss chard. I have a hard time eating lots of greens and find that in a smoothie shake I eat more greens. And the calcium in raw greens is better for us. I know its not easy all this stuff we have to deal with...but it if helps us feel better and avoid medications it's worth it. Take care. eew

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