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nebule's avatar

Anyone ever had G.E.R.D? (Reflux Disease) and Did you ever experience a lump in your throat?

Asked by nebule (16157 points ) December 3rd, 2009

I’m struggling to swallow without feeling this big lump inside my oesophagus and it’s sometimes painful. It’s near the base of my throat (neck) on the left hand side.

I am currently under my doctor and am on Esomeprazole to treat it (40mg). However, I have been on this medication now for 6 months and it’s supposed to have cleared up but is getting worse. I’m due to go back to the doctor a week next Tuesday but wondered if any of my fellow jellies had ever experienced this before? And even if you haven’t if you can give me some kind words to stop me being so neurotic about this… I feel like my body is falling apart at the moment. :-(

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18 Answers

marinelife's avatar

I have been where you are (in fact I am having multiple medical issues right now). It is incredibly frustrating.

Go back to the doctor. If you don’t think the care is good, find a new doctor.

This too shall pass. I will be thinking of you. Let us know what happens with the doctor.

madsmom1030's avatar

I have had severe GERD since I was born- 28-week preemie and am now 33. there are several drugs in the Esomeprazole class and different ones can work with different people- i can take prilosec and prevacid but tagamet and another one do absolutely nothing for me. if you have been on it for 6 months you should have noticed improvement by now. if I am having really bad reflux i always feel like something is caught in my throat and won’t move. being concerned about this isn’t being neurotic- i have had bleeding ulcers in my stomach, last year my stomach had a perferation and they had to remove about 45% of my stomach and undo the surgery that i had to correct the reflux. there are other changes that i have made to help in addition to the medication is eating 4–5 small meals a day. i tend not to eat much after 6pm. rarely drink alcohal and stay away from caffeine. there is another class of drugs called motility drugs like reglan. it speeds the food through your stomach to cut down on acid production. also helps with nausea. unfortunately i have a severe allergy to this family of drugs so they are out of the question for me. i hope you are able to get some more help from your doctor and find some sort of treatment that will help get this under control.

jfarmer1978's avatar

I too had the tightening of the throat and lump. I took the two week regimen of omeprazole and haven’t had the problem since. If it’s not working (especially after 6 months) you need to find something that will. I hope you get it cleared up!

smack's avatar

I had it – just felt nauseated all of the time. The doctor prescribed Prevacid and it worked wonders. After about six weeks I went off the medicine and never had to go back on it again.

galileogirl's avatar

This is beginning to drive me crazy. It started when I had a stroke and when I mentioned it then it was wait and see when things settle down, Then I started having diabetes related GI tract motility issues and the advice is eat tiny portions but that didn’t help. A few pills on an empty stomach in the morning leaves a log jam for hours. The last time I saw my Dr she told not to eat laying down (does she think I’m an ancient Roman aristocrat? who eats laying down?) and if it keeps up she will have me seen by a specialist for GERD. The tests sound very unpleasant.

faye's avatar

I’ve been taking Nexium with good results but I find I can rarely drink coffee without trouble.I can have a coke or beer without food but not coffee. Gastroscopy [tube down your throat] is not so bad. I have Barrett’s esophagus so have to get checked every 2 years. Never lay/lie down after you eat and eat small portions more than 3 big meals. Good luck! I have had the lump in my throat and was convinced for months back when that I was having mild heart attacks.

Darwin's avatar

I have GERD and I have done well on Nexium, Prilosec and Aciphex, all Proton Pump Inhibitors (PPIs). I had less success while on Pepcid, and no success at all on Tagemet, both Histamine-2 (H2) Blockers. I haven’t tried any Promotility Agents such as Reglan because, for one thing, the side effects can be very nasty.

In addition to the meds I also have to avoid certain foods entirely (pizza, red wine, soda) and limit others. I also have to particularly limit how much I eat in the evening, and I have to sleep on a slant, with my head higher than my feet, and never on my left side because that puts more pressure on the esophageal valve. I have also lost 30 pounds, which helps, and never eat within three hours of going to bed.

When out of control I not only get heartburn (a fiery burning in my esophagus) but also a feeling as if something is stuck in my throat (possibly equivalent to your lump), a feeling of pressure in my chest, and an increased rate of asthma due to acid getting into my airway.

Others in my family also have GERD. One had to have surgery because he developed a bleeding ulcer in his esophagus, another has Barrett’s Esophagus (a precancerous condition) so he has to let folks run various tubes down his throat twice a year, and one simply has to remain as thin as possible. All three take medications, also.

Some doctors think there is no difference between GERD medications, but there are some people for whom some drugs work better than others. There are also doctors that explain how you can control GERD with additional steps even while you are on the medications better than others. If a return visit to your doctor doesn’t help, you might consider either a referral to a specialist or a second opinion.

faye's avatar

@Darwin Barrett’s is a possible precancerous condition.

Darwin's avatar

@faye – It may be possibly cancerous, but in my father’s case it is severe and is considered by the doctor’s to be precancerous to such an extent that they periodically think about excising a chunk of his esophagus. If you want to be picky about it, he has Barrett’s esophagus with severe dysplasia.

faye's avatar

@Darwin I don’t want to be picky. I want to think of it that way. You’ll see in the above conversation, I have Barrett’s esophagus.

nebule's avatar

a bit of a bummer that pizza and red wine are two of my favourite things then :-( Does it ever actually go away? can it be cured? Or have I got this for life now in varying degrees of severity?

Thank you for all your responses..I don’t know anyone else with this and was beginning to feel like an alien…people often say…GERD? What’s that? like I am indeed a freak… :-(

@Darwin I have lost two stone now and would have thought that would have helped,...also I have actually cut down quite a lot on the wine and bad foods… I still have one or two coffees a day but I think that will have to go now I’ve heard all the above…

Thank you all for your posts..I’m going to have to make some pretty drastic lifestyle changes I think…

skulks off to get last supper out of oven – low fat pizza!

Darwin's avatar

@lynneblundell – In most cases it never really goes away completely. Even though my brother had the surgery to fix it and lost weight, to boot, he still takes Pepcid. But then he has refused to stop drinking red wine, so who knows?

Sometimes the timing of the problem food can be important. Pizza for lunch might be okay, while pizza in the evening might not, for example. Or one slice of pizza might be okay where three might cause the problem.

Don’t forget about sleep positioning, too. It can make a huge difference. With a regular bed sometimes all you need to do is put the legs at the head of the bed on some bricks of some sort.

galileogirl's avatar

The reason I don’t believe I have GERD is the choking comes when I am awake or asleep and even when I am just reading and not eating or drinking anything. Occasionally I have eaten something like a bowl of cereal and 15–20 min later, I start to choke and everything comes back. It makes me self conscious about eating in company.

Darwin's avatar

@galileogirl – Actually my last test for GERD wasn’t bad because they sedated me.

There are other conditions that have symptoms similar to GERD, including esophageal motor disorders, which can be a possibility both due to diabetic nerve damage, and to residual damage from your stroke. My husband has to take both Reglan and Prilosec to help his food stay where it is supposed to and move along from there, also as it is supposed to. His is the result of nerve damage from diabetes.

In any case, the “look-see” for GERD should give some further clue as to what is going on.

nebule's avatar

thank you @Darwin I’ll certainly change the bed positioning and stop eating within a couple of hours before I go to bed etc. eat smaller meals… thanks again x

Darwin's avatar

@lynneblundell – Good luck with it. Growing old is, as they so often say, not for sissies.

nebule's avatar

OMG!! Is that what this is??? :-O
;-) xxx

mollysmithee's avatar

I’m really sorry about your struggle. My sister has had ongoing issues with her stomach and digestion. But I would really recommend staying away from Raglan. It has been linked to a number of things but only recently has received a black box warning for direct connections to tardive dyskinesia and similar muscle disorders. The FDA needs to regulate better. Now people who were already suffering are now suffering from TWO disorders!

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