About 7 years ago, I developed a steady dull pain in my chest area, right behind where the ribcage meets. I had an upper GI Series and was diagnosed with a hiatus hernia. A few years later, I started to develop a new symptom, at times I would have difficulty burping; it felt like there was something in the way. The problem is always with me and is usually manageable but sometimes it gets much worse, which I refer to as a flare up. About 2.5 years ago, the burping problem got much worse so I went to a doctor again. I was sent to 2 different gastroenterologists and an ear nose and throat specialist, had an endoscopy and another upper GI Series and apparently, I don’t have a hiatus hernia, so I’m back to square one. I have since changed primary care physicians because my doctor's patient load was so great, he had no time to see me.
Meanwhile, on top of the increase of the burping problem, within the last several months or so, I began to feel a pressure beneath my breastplate and as of about a month or so ago, it now radiates up into my neck along the left side, making it difficult to swallow and even speak sometimes. It almost feels like swollen glands but only on one side. Of course, eating has become even more difficult, even drinking water, and I am already quite thin so I cannot afford to go without eating. I also have a hard time taking deep breaths when it flares up. Also, there are times when my whole rib cage feels like I was injured, it feels very sore as though left over from a trauma. And when I move especially while sleeping, I do feel cracking in that central area. And it’s not exactly in the center, it’s slightly to the left and there is a protrusion, but no doctor has thought anything of that.
Right now, I am trying desperately to have my new doctor order an MRI but she told me only a specialist can do that. I have an appt. to see another gastroenterologist next month (May, I’ve been waiting since February) but I finally went back to my doctor and she is now trying to refer me to another hospital to get looked at sooner and to get an MRI ordered, even though she said her boss is frowning on this idea and she also mentioned that insurance companies try to prevent patients from having these tests because they cost $1,000. I've cost the insurance company much more than that in the past 7 years trying to get a diagnosis in myriad ways. Perhaps an MRI 7 years ago would have been cheaper in the long run. I've been prescribed protonix but it doesn't help, nothing really does.
One bit of history: I used to be bulimic and I do recall once or twice while vomiting, I felt as though I injured myself in the region of concern. I don’t know if it’s related but I did have a recurrence of this disorder around a few months before I started to feel the first symptom. But why is it now up into my neck?