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HAS ANY ONE EXPERIENCED ESOPHAGEAL DIFFUSE SPASMS, HELP>>>
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HAS ANY ONE EXPERIENCED ESOPHAGEAL DIFFUSE SPASMS, HELP>>>

I NEED HELP, I DO NOT KNOW WHAT TO DO WITH ESOPHAGEAL SPASMS.  MANY DOCTORS HAVE SEEN ME AND THEY SAID I HAD ACID REFLUX DISEASE.  UNTIL LAST FRIDAY AFTER MY ENDOSCOPY, MY GASTRO FOUND OUT THAT I HAD ESOPHAGEAL DISMOTILITY.  TO MAKE SURE, HE IS GOING TO SCHEDULE ME FOR A MANNOMETRY.  A LIKE TO KNOW WHAT IT FEELS TO HAVE A MANNOMETRY, AND IF SOMEBODY IS OR WAS EXPERIENCING THIS SYMPTOMS SUCH AS TROUBLE SWALLOWING AND CHEST PAIN.

TX

OMAR
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Avatar_n_tn
I have been through many tests and xrays,ekg,endoscopy.They first said it was muscle strain then acid reflux.I have tried many meds. The Doc. is treating me for esophageal spasams.
The meds I'm taking are for heart and high blood pressure which I have neither.My symptoms are pressure in my chest constantly sometimes very extreme.Does anyone know if esophageal spasams can be lessoned by something hearbal or some type of physical therapy?
Hail
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Avatar_n_tn
A mannometry (spelling?) is a test to see how your motility is; i.e.: they have to drop a device through your nose and down your throat and test the strength of your swallowing.
This sounds like a painful thing but it really is just uncomfortable and that lasts until it is drawn out.
Relax and follow their instructions and it is over before you know it. You may have a gag reflex slightly when is is inserted.
I have had two of these tests.  

If they are doing an acid reflux test, they will do it in the same way but the tube for it is much smaller, and you will have to wear this taped to your nose for 24 hours. Do not fool around with it!  This is not as uncomfortable as the first test, but you will look and feel ridiculous. (I walked around Baltimore with mine; went to a museum while I waited the 24 hours...scaring small children and making adults generally uncomfortable.)

However, it is important to eat and drink as you do normally, because they have you record your sleeping, eating and drinking (and pain).  The data is stored in a little walkman-type box that is strapped on.  I found my second one of these to be easier because the technician taped to my nose, then to my cheekbone, then the tube went behind my ear, taped again to my neck, then down to the "walkman".  If yours doesn't do this, you may want to do it yourself.
The tube will pull when you eat, so try to eat softer foods if this bothers you. The only thing I found that was a side effect was that I was a little hoarse the next day.  Good Luck to you!
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Avatar_n_tn
I get severe stoach attacks that are located under the sternum,  it feels like i am having a heart attack.  Piercing spams like pains that last for about 9 hours.  I have had every test done and still no answers.  I get these attacks every couple months for the last 7 years.  I am a female and 23.  I beleive it is hormonal.  Are you a female?  When I have these attacks/ spasms i take nitroglecerien.  It takes the pain from a 10 to a 5  which is great.  I am on acid reflux medicine everyday called aciflex.  The nitro works as a smooth muscle relaxer. Ask your doctor about this.  I still have no answers as well,  i feel your pain  it is very frustrating.  Keep good spirits!
ISHA
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Avatar_n_tn
Ok, I've had it with these pains that wake me up in the middle of the night. I KNOW it's not acid reflux. It was a pain trying to figure out what to put in the search engine! lol So now I know what it is, and I don't NEED a mannometry test. I don't need a doctor to tell me what I already know. So, since I know what it is, thanks to all of you writing in, [thank you VERY much]

So what do you all take to relax those spasms? I am an herbalist and since I just came to know what it's like tonite, I will have to research to see if there's any herbs that will relax that part of me enough to do some good. My email address is ***@**** if anyone wants to write me and see what I've found out. I may not find my way back here again, but I'll try.

I can't lie on either side when sleeping, because I get spasms that wake me out of dead sleep. Just last nite, 8/2/02 was the first nite when it went to sleeping on either side. Before that it was just sleeping on my right side.
Does weight have anything to do with it? I am going to lose weight, I would think that would help. Anything to help with less pressure, wouldn't you think?
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Avatar_n_tn
Ok, I've had it with these pains that wake me up in the middle of the night. I KNOW it's not acid reflux. It was a pain trying to figure out what to put in the search engine! lol So now I know what it is, and I don't NEED a mannometry test. I don't need a doctor to tell me what I already know. So, since I know what it is, thanks to all of you writing in, [thank you VERY much]

So what do you all take to relax those spasms? I am an herbalist and since I just came to know what it's like tonite, I will have to research to see if there's any herbs that will relax that part of me enough to do some good. My email address is ***@**** if anyone wants to write me and see what I've found out. I may not find my way back here again, but I'll try.

I can't lie on either side when sleeping, because I get spasms that wake me out of dead sleep. Just last nite, 8/2/02 was the first nite when it went to sleeping on either side. Before that it was just sleeping on my right side.
Does weight have anything to do with it? I am going to lose weight, I would think that would help. Anything to help with less pressure, wouldn't you think?
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Avatar_n_tn
I'm right along with you on this ride!  I have what I beleive to be esophageal spasms for about 4 years now. The first one started when I was dozing off after my gallbladder surgery.  I thought I was having a heart attack.  The nurse took it very lightly but it scared the heck out of me.  Since then I had these spasms usually in the middle of the night, awakened from a dead sleep. 2 years ago I was hospitalized for these when one started on my way home from the grocery store.  Luckily I had another adult in the car to drive. One dr said he thought it was sphincter of oddie dysfunction and set me up for an ercp.  The test showed nothing.  The specialist put me on a drug called Levsin (anti-spasm).   I took that faithfully for the last two years and even had a liquid form in case of emergency.  It worked wonders and kept me out of the hospital.  Two weeks ago I found out the hard way, that the Levsin stopped working and ended up in the er room for 5 hours having these spasms until enough demoral calmed them down.  Since then I have been on Donnatol (anti-spasm)  My doc said it is the strongest one out there.  I felt alittle more secure knowing this until yesterday.  Yep, While I was waiting for a dr appt. for a refill on a med I started to feel the start of spasms.  I have gotten pretty good at recognizing the beginnings of these spasms and I start to pace, sometimes it helps for a while.  But the good side is that the new med (donnatel)works somewhat, because the pain only hits a 6 or 7 on a scale to 10.  Usually I hit the 10 and higher in the er room and feel like I'm going to die from the pain and lack of breath.   Boy can I relate with you about these things.  I've recently had a barium swallow and am going for a ct scan of the abdomon tomorrow.  Personnaly I wish they would go right down the esophagous and cut the lower valve (read about it on webmd.)  I think it is listed under achalasia, which is a severe form of esophogeal spasms of the lower sphincter and seems to give patients about 10 years of releif.  Boy I look forward to that day!!!
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Avatar_n_tn
Kris,   I have had the same thing for the over 5 years now,  I thought the same thing as you.....it can't be acid reflux becaseu it hurts too bad.  I have been to the 4th stomach speaclist in the country and they still can't find anything.  I have been to the emergency room so many times.....i got smart and don't go any more...it costs to much money and they give you pain pills or pain shots for it,  well my doctor perscribed me vicodine to take when i have these spasms.  Which helps.  It sin't a cure but it relaxes them,  the anit spams pills you speak of don't work as well as the pain killers.   Get your doct. to perscribe you some.....at least to try for the next time you have an attack.  i usually take one then i need another be fore it calms down.   It all depends on how fast you relize you are having an attack and can get to your medicine.  Sometimes i wait too long,  then it is too late.  These are my thoughts on that.
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Avatar_n_tn
has any of the doctors you have seen said anything about gallbladder problems or post gallbladder surgery.  I read (on some medical website) that severe esophageal spasms can be caused by injury to nerves surrounding the esophagus.  I was thinking that maybe this happened to me because the very first one I had was a few hours after my gallbladder surgery.  One of my recent times in the ER a nurse gave me a GI cocktail.  It consisted of malox, some numbing stuff, and something else (can't remember).  It tasted awful and numbed me so much I could barely swallow but I think she was on to something.  I beleive the spasms stopped shortly after.  The other times they always insert an IV and demoral doses until I pass out from pain and exhaustion.  Sounds funny but I have explained it to nurses etc., that the pain I have is like giving birth (only through the esophagus).  Of course they look at me funny but I think they get the idea of how painful these things really are.  Of course I've also had dr's on occasion tell me that it's stress, over tired, tension, irritable bowel, etc.  I always say, "I don't think I get too stressed out when I'm in a deep sleep!".
I was also given recently , percocet with anti-nausau meds. to take along with the donnatal. I hate to be on medications all the time for this, but I also hope to find a permanent cure.  Like you, I have been having these things for a long time now.  I don't travel anywhere without another adult in the car in case I get one of the attacks and need someone to drive me to the ER immediately. It definetly has put a damper on my life.  I will be going back to a GI specialist in September.  He did an ERCP on me 2 years ago hoping it was going to turn out to be sphincter of oddi dysfunction.  Too bad the results were normal. He only suggested that I am having spasms of the gut (stomach).  He is the one who put me on Levsin.  Although that recently stopped working and now I take the donnatal.  Sorry for the long note.  It feels good to know that I'm not alone in this.  Thanks Krisg
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Avatar_n_tn
Nitroglycerine pills will relieve those spasms.  The esophagus is
smooth muscle like arteries, and the nitro will relax it.  I've been in the floor with the throat pain (chest, through the arms, makes you think heart attack) and popped a nitro under the tongue....less than minute, it's over.
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addendum.  The bad side to nitro is a terrific headache....a lot more tolerable than the spasm pain.  My episodes were intermittent, sometimes mild exertion, sometimes just lying in bed.  I had the motility test...nothing found abnormal (I will take a bullet to the head before I ever have another motility test).  I was scoped down the throat and they found some mild inflammation.  It went away on its own....five years ago.  

But it has now come back again as of two months ago.  This time though, it is very consistent and is brought on by exertion.  It's painful, but it never gets to "heart attack" painful.  I've gone through a round of acid reducers (acidphex? and prevacid) and am now on nexium.  I even did a round of long term nitro (to rule out artery spasms), which didn't help and had a headache for 3 days till I got used to the pills.  Doc is gonna do the scope down the throat in a couple of weeks.  Stress test was ok as was the echo cardiogram.
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ive been having spasms for years. Been researching just as long.My spasms are a 10 and persist for hours. just like a heart attack.There is no one cause for esoph spasm. nor is there one treatment. however, I do believe my spasms are do to a halt in the wave pattern of digestion that starts in the esophagus and ends in the large intestine. There is an abrubption somewhere along the line and it causes a spasm in the esophagus. Somewhere in my small or large intestine the muscles freeze up. I have had my gallbladder removed and the excess bile causes distention and paralysis somewhere in my gut and I get a spasm. I take lots of fibercon and colestid, a bile sequestrant. I am not saying that anyone else's problems are due to bile acid, but maybe to a disruption of natural contractions somewhere along the line. I am still researching.
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Just finished with the (ruling out the heart problems) tests. Stress test was fine along with previous ecg's in ER rooms, and complete blood work.  My primary doc thinks it is possibly achalasia.  It does sound on target.  I am going to see a specialist in Sept. for endoscopy and other tests.  The Er room staff tried Nitro on me when I was in with spasms, It did not work.  I would also hate to take those pills everyday too.  The anti-spasms meds seem to be working for the most part and for now.  The only other current option is for me to have my next spasm and rush to the ER room while they pump me with demoral shots until I finally pass out from the medication and pain.  There is a couple of different procedures I will be checking into with the specialist. read about them on webmd.com or other medical web-sites for achalasia. (balloon dilation, cutting of the lower sphincter of the esophagus, and a few others.)
Hope this helps somewhat for anyone experiencing this pain.

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Avatar_f_tn
Hi,
  I am having the very same symptoms, i am curious if any of you have tried eating something, if i do it actually goes away sooner?? even when it wakes me during the night i eat a cracker and it gets better. It's usually worse for me when i'm hungry ( well thats what i've been thinking anyway). I also started getting these when i had my gallbladder out, and a nissen fundoplication the same day. would love to hear from you guys on whether eating helps you or not, i'm at a loose end to find out whats wrong with me. thanks
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Just spent three horrible days in hospital.  Went to ER with what I thought was heart attack.  Stess tests - no heart attack, ultrasound - no gall stones, now I'm being sent to Gastro Guy.  I've been reading your comments and the esophageal spasms sounds on target for what I experience.  Does anyone have this experience?  Severe, major chest pain that goes into my neck and up side of my face.  It is double you over type pain, can't breath, just simply unreal.  It feels something like an electrical shock all through my chest and neck and face and once down both shoulders.  I'm terrified.  While I'm waiting to see the Gastro Doc can anyone suggest what I might take to just east the pain to the bearable level?  Would appreciate any help.  

thanks, mac
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krisg,
Well i had an attack last sunday and the nitro didn't work this time .   So maybe it was a fluke the last time.  The vicodine did work fine though.  Enough to where i could bare it.  I can't believe there is no simple cure.  I do know that many people have the surgery and it makes it worse.  that is not an option for me.  I am waiting for the miracle drug!!  I am on nexium now.  They believe due to my acid reflux disease it irrates the esphougus and causes these severe attacks.  I can deal with it now since i have been dealing with it for so long.  Labor pains....that is what i compared it to too.  When i do have a child it will be no big deal...my stomach attacks are probably worse.  Well have a good day!!!
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