Discussions By Condition: I cannot get a diagnosis.

Acid Reflux? Something More?

Posted In: I cannot get a diagnosis. 11 Replies
  • Posted By: Anonymous
  • March 29, 2009
  • 11:44 PM

Hi my name is Jemma; I am 19 years old and a student.

The purpose of this post is to state all of my health concerns as of June 2008 and see if anybody out there has an opinion or idea of what is actually wrong with me and possibly what I could do about it, I would like to point out that up until this point I was always healthy – to the extent where I would usually not even contract a cold if my entire family had.

The first time I ever felt strange was in June, it was the afternoon after a night out and I was on a bus – I had had hangovers many a time before and I knew how they felt but this was much different - my chest hurt, I was dizzy and I felt generally unwell. I started to worry that I couldn’t breath, felt sick and got off the bus at which point I had what I now believe to be my first panic attack.

This passed, but that night in bed feeling strange still I started to worry again, felt a strange dizziness when I lay down and closed my eyes, a strange ‘lump’ in my chest and couldn’t sleep because of it. I was fine in the morning.

I think this was when I first started having symptoms of acid reflux – which I think was the cause of the chest pain and the chest pain the cause of the panic attack (and of course the alcohol the cause of the severe acid reflux that day).

For a while before I knew or was diagnosed with acid reflux I had occasional panic attacks, I went to the doctors who told me it was just anxiety but I knew there was something else wrong and when I went back and suggested it could be that they were just like “yeah, ok here’s some tablets” which I find very unhelpful.

The symptoms that I have that make me believe it is acid reflux are:

• Constant (all day every day) feeling of a lump in my throat that I cannot budge
• Aggravated by alcohol/smoking/fatty meals/any meal that tastes of anything!
• Much worse when laying in bed
• Only occasional heartburn (which I think is rare for the condition?)
• Sometimes burping up stomach acid
• Pressure in my chest (feels like I need to belch but can’t and if I do doesn’t alleviate it)
• A horrible rumbling sound in my chest that radiates up to my oesophagus if I don’t belch
• Nausea caused by minor hunger

I have tried omeprazole 20mg, which did nothing, and omeprazole 40mg which made me feel sick but no better so I did not complete the course (I let it go for about 4 days before I could no longer put up with the extra symptoms). Thing is, I think that most acid reflux medication is supposed to help with heartburn which I don’t very often get and if I do get I have learned to live with as it is minor in my opinion by comparison to how I feel otherwise. I had a blood test that said my thyroid was functioning normally.

I am currently experiencing other symptoms that I cant attribute to the acid reflux, I have been coughing up yellow/green mucus for the past 4 days and tonight I had a very sudden severe stabbing chest through my chest/back when I inhaled – it only last for a couple of minutes but was very worrying at the time.

Other things that I get – sometimes I have pain/numbness in my limbs, occasionally when I try to sleep I get that strange dizzy feeling I described before – but whenever I am just falling to sleep I wake up with a start, a deep breath (sort of like coming up from being underwater) and feel disorientated and panicked.

My skin, hair and nails are showing the way that I feel at the moment – my face is red and patchy and dry, my nails are splitting and falling off and I think this is a good indicator of the poor health I feel.

However, I am not experiencing any fever or any other symptoms not described above – this is a comprehensive list of my symptoms!

My biggest concerns are:
a) It’s not ‘just’ acid reflux, as I diagnosed myself and medication doesn’t help.
b) The chest pains that I experienced tonight, even if they were brief.
c) The sleeping/waking/startled thing.
d) It is going to get worse before it gets better, if it ever does.
e) I have not been able (whether voluntarily or otherwise) to vomit for well over a year, I have tried when I have felt very ill and although I go through the feeling I never actually vomit.

My lifestyle is relatively unhealthy – I drink quite often and smoke occasionally, usually much more so when I am drinking. I eat healthy evening meals but lunch tends to be quite unhealthy, I walk pretty much everywhere but don’t participate in any other sport/fitness.
I am aware that I need to control this if I am ever to get better, and so I have almost completely quit smoking now and have cut down the amount of alcohol I have been consuming (I hope it can be appreciated that because I am a student there are certain lifestyle changes that are quite hard!)

If you have got this far, I very much appreciate that you have taken the time to read this and I hope with all my heart that I can gain some more insight from you as to what could be wrong – doctors just keep throwing antacids at me and they do not work.

Thankyou

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11 Replies:

  • Since you posted something regarding acid reflux, I had to drop in and give you my 2 cents about my condition and maybe, it compares to yours? Anyways, the first time I was affected by acid reflux, I was in a car wash spraying down my vehicle when all of a sudden, I started getting this extreme burning pain in the center of my chest just below the ribcage. And it certainly hurt like ***l. Since I have never had one before, I didnt know what the heck it was. Well, that was a long time ago. Seeing my doctor after that didnt really help since he told me I also had anxiety! That kind of peaved me off cause I knew I definitely had something wrong with me besides anxiety! Anyways, I did undergo some tests later including an upper GI and I was found to have a hiatus hernia where the valve between the lower esophagus and the stomach lets stomach acid back into the esophagus occasionally, hence the burning sensation. After my first episode of acid refulx attacks a long, long time ago, Ive had many more....and now you wouldnt cant catch me anywhere without a package of tums or rolaids in my pocket. I also take an ant-acid medication like Losec or Zantac everyday. Its a real pain to deal with this type of disease but a reality for me. I have to eat the right types of foods all the time now and sleep with my head elevated at night. Hopefully, your problem gets better and I want you to know that if you are diagnosed with a bad hiatus hernia, there is an operation that can be done to correct this. Unless its a bad one though, they wont operate and you will have to live with the condition using medication. Hope this helps and let me know how things go...
    ckanaan 33 Replies Flag this Response
  • Hi my name is Jemma; I am 19 years old and a student.The purpose of this post is to state all of my health concerns as of June 2008 and see if anybody out there has an opinion or idea of what is actually wrong with me and possibly what I could do about it, I would like to point out that up until this point I was always healthy – to the extent where I would usually not even contract a cold if my entire family had.The first time I ever felt strange was in June, it was the afternoon after a night out and I was on a bus – I had had hangovers many a time before and I knew how they felt but this was much different - my chest hurt, I was dizzy and I felt generally unwell. I started to worry that I couldn’t breath, felt sick and got off the bus at which point I had what I now believe to be my first panic attack.This passed, but that night in bed feeling strange still I started to worry again, felt a strange dizziness when I lay down and closed my eyes, a strange ‘lump’ in my chest and couldn’t sleep because of it. I was fine in the morning.I think this was when I first started having symptoms of acid reflux – which I think was the cause of the chest pain and the chest pain the cause of the panic attack (and of course the alcohol the cause of the severe acid reflux that day). For a while before I knew or was diagnosed with acid reflux I had occasional panic attacks, I went to the doctors who told me it was just anxiety but I knew there was something else wrong and when I went back and suggested it could be that they were just like “yeah, ok here’s some tablets” which I find very unhelpful.The symptoms that I have that make me believe it is acid reflux are:• Constant (all day every day) feeling of a lump in my throat that I cannot budge• Aggravated by alcohol/smoking/fatty meals/any meal that tastes of anything!• Much worse when laying in bed• Only occasional heartburn (which I think is rare for the condition?)• Sometimes burping up stomach acid• Pressure in my chest (feels like I need to belch but can’t and if I do doesn’t alleviate it)• A horrible rumbling sound in my chest that radiates up to my oesophagus if I don’t belch• Nausea caused by minor hungerI have tried omeprazole 20mg, which did nothing, and omeprazole 40mg which made me feel sick but no better so I did not complete the course (I let it go for about 4 days before I could no longer put up with the extra symptoms). Thing is, I think that most acid reflux medication is supposed to help with heartburn which I don’t very often get and if I do get I have learned to live with as it is minor in my opinion by comparison to how I feel otherwise. I had a blood test that said my thyroid was functioning normally.I am currently experiencing other symptoms that I cant attribute to the acid reflux, I have been coughing up yellow/green mucus for the past 4 days and tonight I had a very sudden severe stabbing chest through my chest/back when I inhaled – it only last for a couple of minutes but was very worrying at the time.Other things that I get – sometimes I have pain/numbness in my limbs, occasionally when I try to sleep I get that strange dizzy feeling I described before – but whenever I am just falling to sleep I wake up with a start, a deep breath (sort of like coming up from being underwater) and feel disorientated and panicked.My skin, hair and nails are showing the way that I feel at the moment – my face is red and patchy and dry, my nails are splitting and falling off and I think this is a good indicator of the poor health I feel.However, I am not experiencing any fever or any other symptoms not described above – this is a comprehensive list of my symptoms!My biggest concerns are:a) It’s not ‘just’ acid reflux, as I diagnosed myself and medication doesn’t help.b) The chest pains that I experienced tonight, even if they were brief.c) The sleeping/waking/startled thing.d) It is going to get worse before it gets better, if it ever does.e) I have not been able (whether voluntarily or otherwise) to vomit for well over a year, I have tried when I have felt very ill and although I go through the feeling I never actually vomit.My lifestyle is relatively unhealthy – I drink quite often and smoke occasionally, usually much more so when I am drinking. I eat healthy evening meals but lunch tends to be quite unhealthy, I walk pretty much everywhere but don’t participate in any other sport/fitness.I am aware that I need to control this if I am ever to get better, and so I have almost completely quit smoking now and have cut down the amount of alcohol I have been consuming (I hope it can be appreciated that because I am a student there are certain lifestyle changes that are quite hard!)If you have got this far, I very much appreciate that you have taken the time to read this and I hope with all my heart that I can gain some more insight from you as to what could be wrong – doctors just keep throwing antacids at me and they do not work.ThankyouHi,I too am suffering from panic attacks and acid reflux and just wanted to let you know that you can also have panic attacks in your dream, hence waking up startled and short of breath. That shouldnt be a thing to worry about, as it usually fades out. But if it persists, go see a doctor regarding the anxiety issue just in case if it is something else.Regarding the yellow mucus thing, im not too sure on that.I am having bad dizziness for the last 2 weeks from reflux and its seriously doing my head in.Good luck
    Anonymous 42789 Replies Flag this Response
  • Hi my name is Jemma; I am 19 years old and a student.The purpose of this post is to state all of my health concerns as of June 2008 and see if anybody out there has an opinion or idea of what is actually wrong with me and possibly what I could do about it, I would like to point out that up until this point I was always healthy – to the extent where I would usually not even contract a cold if my entire family had.The first time I ever felt strange was in June, it was the afternoon after a night out and I was on a bus – I had had hangovers many a time before and I knew how they felt but this was much different - my chest hurt, I was dizzy and I felt generally unwell. I started to worry that I couldn’t breath, felt sick and got off the bus at which point I had what I now believe to be my first panic attack.This passed, but that night in bed feeling strange still I started to worry again, felt a strange dizziness when I lay down and closed my eyes, a strange ‘lump’ in my chest and couldn’t sleep because of it. I was fine in the morning.I think this was when I first started having symptoms of acid reflux – which I think was the cause of the chest pain and the chest pain the cause of the panic attack (and of course the alcohol the cause of the severe acid reflux that day). For a while before I knew or was diagnosed with acid reflux I had occasional panic attacks, I went to the doctors who told me it was just anxiety but I knew there was something else wrong and when I went back and suggested it could be that they were just like “yeah, ok here’s some tablets” which I find very unhelpful.The symptoms that I have that make me believe it is acid reflux are:• Constant (all day every day) feeling of a lump in my throat that I cannot budge• Aggravated by alcohol/smoking/fatty meals/any meal that tastes of anything!• Much worse when laying in bed• Only occasional heartburn (which I think is rare for the condition?)• Sometimes burping up stomach acid• Pressure in my chest (feels like I need to belch but can’t and if I do doesn’t alleviate it)• A horrible rumbling sound in my chest that radiates up to my oesophagus if I don’t belch• Nausea caused by minor hungerI have tried omeprazole 20mg, which did nothing, and omeprazole 40mg which made me feel sick but no better so I did not complete the course (I let it go for about 4 days before I could no longer put up with the extra symptoms). Thing is, I think that most acid reflux medication is supposed to help with heartburn which I don’t very often get and if I do get I have learned to live with as it is minor in my opinion by comparison to how I feel otherwise. I had a blood test that said my thyroid was functioning normally.I am currently experiencing other symptoms that I cant attribute to the acid reflux, I have been coughing up yellow/green mucus for the past 4 days and tonight I had a very sudden severe stabbing chest through my chest/back when I inhaled – it only last for a couple of minutes but was very worrying at the time.Other things that I get – sometimes I have pain/numbness in my limbs, occasionally when I try to sleep I get that strange dizzy feeling I described before – but whenever I am just falling to sleep I wake up with a start, a deep breath (sort of like coming up from being underwater) and feel disorientated and panicked.My skin, hair and nails are showing the way that I feel at the moment – my face is red and patchy and dry, my nails are splitting and falling off and I think this is a good indicator of the poor health I feel.However, I am not experiencing any fever or any other symptoms not described above – this is a comprehensive list of my symptoms!My biggest concerns are:a) It’s not ‘just’ acid reflux, as I diagnosed myself and medication doesn’t help.b) The chest pains that I experienced tonight, even if they were brief.c) The sleeping/waking/startled thing.d) It is going to get worse before it gets better, if it ever does.e) I have not been able (whether voluntarily or otherwise) to vomit for well over a year, I have tried when I have felt very ill and although I go through the feeling I never actually vomit.My lifestyle is relatively unhealthy – I drink quite often and smoke occasionally, usually much more so when I am drinking. I eat healthy evening meals but lunch tends to be quite unhealthy, I walk pretty much everywhere but don’t participate in any other sport/fitness.I am aware that I need to control this if I am ever to get better, and so I have almost completely quit smoking now and have cut down the amount of alcohol I have been consuming (I hope it can be appreciated that because I am a student there are certain lifestyle changes that are quite hard!)If you have got this far, I very much appreciate that you have taken the time to read this and I hope with all my heart that I can gain some more insight from you as to what could be wrong – doctors just keep throwing antacids at me and they do not work.ThankyouHi Jemma, I have recently experienced very similar symptoms. I don't have the burning though. I do wake up as if some one has tried to suffocate me, gasping for air and I have this annoying lump in my throat that sometimes goes away. My symptoms started after a vertigo attack that landed me in the hospital! The doctor keeps pointing to anxiety which I am starting to believe. I found some info on carcinpharongeal muscle spasms, which cause the lump feeling from stress. The symptoms are not there in the morning is a major indicator. I too feel as if some foods and alcohol aggravate the lump.Misty Anyway, let me know if you found anything out cause I am at the same place you are.
    Anonymous 42789 Replies Flag this Response
  • You might have yeast overgrowth in your body. Try a probiotic or eat yogurt daily.You'll have to slow down on the drinking so your body can heal its self.the smoking also, but you know that.Good luck
    Anonymous 42789 Replies Flag this Response
  • I realize this is a few months late, but tho't I'd chime in all the same. I've had a condition for a few years that only recently I've begun to suspect may be acid reflux at its origin. My first symptoms were actually more sinus related, which is explained by what is commonly called LPR, or Laryngopharyngeal Reflux. Acid reflux can, in effect, cause sinus distress and infections which would explain your yellow post-nasal drip. Also, I've read that most acid reflux is actually caused by too LITTLE stomach acid against popular knowledge; a condition called Hypochlorhydria. This prevents your body from properly digesting and processing the essential vitamins and minerals in your food. When you are deprived of these things it is common for your fingernails, skin and hair to show it. About all I can tell ya, except good luck!
    Dygerati 1 Replies Flag this Response
  • I'm not doctor but I can relate to this.I also suffer from acid reflux and anxiety, both very miserable.I also smoked, drank.. etc.First, Get yourself checked for H.Pylori (bacteria in your stomach) - this can cause you to get acid reflux. Its easy to get tested. Doctors can also do an acid reflux test to determine how severe your acid reflux is, this is done by drinking a white dye and taking x-rays as you move around.Second,See your doctor, you are most likely suffering from a general anxiety disorder (explains the tightness in your throat, panic attacks.. etc) your doctor will most likely subscribe to you anti-depressants or even tranquilizers. Best of luck,
    Anonymous 42789 Replies Flag this Response
  • Hi, Jemma. It was a few months ago you posted originally...don't know if you will see this. I think some of the replies already posted may be helpful. Just wanted to share that some young people don't realize that getting drunk ever is something the human body wasn't designed to do. At age 19 you have already had experience with hangovers, and I think your body is telling you that one beer or one glass of wine is better for your body than abusing it with more than that. Smoking or breathing the smoke of others or even "third-hand smoke," breathing someone's clothes after they have smoked, is not something the human body can tolerate well. I do wish you well, and I hope you will focus on healthy ways of enjoying life with healthy people. many blessings, susan
    Anonymous 42789 Replies Flag this Response
  • Wonder if you got a big whiff of carbon monoxide on that bus?? Started it all and you mistook it for panic attack...they could have put some drugs in your booze, so you need to watch yourself. You could also have some fumes leaking where you live and the bus just pushed it all over the edge, along with your drink laced with something. Have your stove, water heater, & heater checked for leaks. Could also be tail pipe exhaust leaking into a car you ride frequently.
    Monsterlove 2921 Replies Flag this Response
  • Hi my name is Jemma; I am 19 years old and a student.The purpose of this post is to state all of my health concerns as of June 2008 and see if anybody out there has an opinion or idea of what is actually wrong with me and possibly what I could do about it, I would like to point out that up until this point I was always healthy – to the extent where I would usually not even contract a cold if my entire family had.The first time I ever felt strange was in June, it was the afternoon after a night out and I was on a bus – I had had hangovers many a time before and I knew how they felt but this was much different - my chest hurt, I was dizzy and I felt generally unwell. I started to worry that I couldn’t breath, felt sick and got off the bus at which point I had what I now believe to be my first panic attack.This passed, but that night in bed feeling strange still I started to worry again, felt a strange dizziness when I lay down and closed my eyes, a strange ‘lump’ in my chest and couldn’t sleep because of it. I was fine in the morning.I think this was when I first started having symptoms of acid reflux – which I think was the cause of the chest pain and the chest pain the cause of the panic attack (and of course the alcohol the cause of the severe acid reflux that day). For a while before I knew or was diagnosed with acid reflux I had occasional panic attacks, I went to the doctors who told me it was just anxiety but I knew there was something else wrong and when I went back and suggested it could be that they were just like “yeah, ok here’s some tablets” which I find very unhelpful.The symptoms that I have that make me believe it is acid reflux are:• Constant (all day every day) feeling of a lump in my throat that I cannot budge• Aggravated by alcohol/smoking/fatty meals/any meal that tastes of anything!• Much worse when laying in bed• Only occasional heartburn (which I think is rare for the condition?)• Sometimes burping up stomach acid• Pressure in my chest (feels like I need to belch but can’t and if I do doesn’t alleviate it)• A horrible rumbling sound in my chest that radiates up to my oesophagus if I don’t belch• Nausea caused by minor hungerI have tried omeprazole 20mg, which did nothing, and omeprazole 40mg which made me feel sick but no better so I did not complete the course (I let it go for about 4 days before I could no longer put up with the extra symptoms). Thing is, I think that most acid reflux medication is supposed to help with heartburn which I don’t very often get and if I do get I have learned to live with as it is minor in my opinion by comparison to how I feel otherwise. I had a blood test that said my thyroid was functioning normally.I am currently experiencing other symptoms that I cant attribute to the acid reflux, I have been coughing up yellow/green mucus for the past 4 days and tonight I had a very sudden severe stabbing chest through my chest/back when I inhaled – it only last for a couple of minutes but was very worrying at the time.Other things that I get – sometimes I have pain/numbness in my limbs, occasionally when I try to sleep I get that strange dizzy feeling I described before – but whenever I am just falling to sleep I wake up with a start, a deep breath (sort of like coming up from being underwater) and feel disorientated and panicked.My skin, hair and nails are showing the way that I feel at the moment – my face is red and patchy and dry, my nails are splitting and falling off and I think this is a good indicator of the poor health I feel.However, I am not experiencing any fever or any other symptoms not described above – this is a comprehensive list of my symptoms!My biggest concerns are:a) It’s not ‘just’ acid reflux, as I diagnosed myself and medication doesn’t help.b) The chest pains that I experienced tonight, even if they were brief.c) The sleeping/waking/startled thing.d) It is going to get worse before it gets better, if it ever does.e) I have not been able (whether voluntarily or otherwise) to vomit for well over a year, I have tried when I have felt very ill and although I go through the feeling I never actually vomit.My lifestyle is relatively unhealthy – I drink quite often and smoke occasionally, usually much more so when I am drinking. I eat healthy evening meals but lunch tends to be quite unhealthy, I walk pretty much everywhere but don’t participate in any other sport/fitness.I am aware that I need to control this if I am ever to get better, and so I have almost completely quit smoking now and have cut down the amount of alcohol I have been consuming (I hope it can be appreciated that because I am a student there are certain lifestyle changes that are quite hard!)If you have got this far, I very much appreciate that you have taken the time to read this and I hope with all my heart that I can gain some more insight from you as to what could be wrong – doctors just keep throwing antacids at me and they do not work.ThankyouJemma,I know it is December and you may have forgotten about this forum, but I work in the health care industry and your symptoms sound like there is something with your lungs and your liver, spleen or maybe an auto immune disorder. As an underaged self proclaimed "heavy drinker and smoker" you should drastically consider quitting both and start seeking further medical attention. I wish you well in life because at 19 (you may be 20 by now) you are so young and you have so much more to look forward to. Please seek help. I hope you already have.Good luck....
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • December 21, 2009
    • 10:31 PM
    • 0
    Flag this Response
  • hi jenna i know its been a few years but i just saw your post and that is how i feel down to a T with the panic attacks, lump in my throat, being a colllege student and socially smoke and drink but not excessively. i hvae burning in my throat and its so bad at night when im trying to sleep. what ended up happpening with your case? i realllly hope you see this!!!!!!
    Anonymous 42789 Replies
    • November 9, 2012
    • 00:24 AM
    • 0
    Flag this Response
  • Have a look at what Chris Kresser had to say on the topic:http://chriskresser.com/get-rid-of-heartburn-and-gerd-forever-in-three-simple-stepsCured me! Namely taking these with every meal:http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000NRTXGW/ref=rcxsubs_mys2_product_titleI need to take 7, but you may be able to get by with less. Good luck!
    SinusSufferer 3 Replies
    • November 15, 2012
    • 05:01 PM
    • 0
    Flag this Response
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