GERD (Acid Reflux) Community
Acid reflux
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Acid reflux

I have been noticing changes in my voice like I can't sing or hit a different pitch without my voice changing. My voice seems "irritated". My ent dr looked down my throat with a scope and said my throat was irritates behind my vocal cords and said since I don't smoke it is acid reflux. He placed me on Prilosec and I have been on this for almost 2 months and I don't seem better. Is there something better I should try? Or could my voice changing be caused by something else?
Tags: Acid reflux vs other causes
7 Comments Post a Comment
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Avatar_m_tn
First try a different acid reflux medicine like Prevacid which is also over the counter. Be sure to take it on an empty stomach as Prilosec and Prevacid can be reduced in potency by 50 to 60% if taken with food (they always forget to tell you that part!). Try this approach for two weeks to see if that helps.  
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620923_tn?1416285879

  Hi....I have to ask....do u drink alcohol.., drink carbonated bevs?

What do u eat...nething spicey, acidic?....there r foods u should be avoiding along with taking the meds....meds alone will not make u better, u have to modify ur life style and diet. Are u stressed out?

Also, u will want to see a Dr to test the PH to see if u have too much or too little acid....just seeing there is an issue, is not enuff to say it is reflux...as many with too little acid have the same symptoms and will worsen on the PPIS...

Check out our Health Pages for more info on GERD and foods that r safe and foods to avoid - http://www.medhelp.org/health_pages/list?cid=236
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63984_tn?1385441539
I had the same experience when I had severe acid reflux, stomach acid can cause a lot of damage to vocal chords.  I agree with Selma, do look at the link she suggested.  Also, take your Priolsec exactly as prescribed, as Selma suggests... usually that is 1/2 to 1 hour before the meal. If you take it with the meal or after the meal, it just makes goofy urine.

When acid reflux is severe, it can erode vocal chords very quickly, and can damage tooth enamel as well as create other problems.  Hopefully a poster on this site (Smiley) will respond, she is dealing with the same problem.  

That said, I'd stay in contact with your doctor, take the drug exactly as  prescribed, and do keep us informed.
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Avatar_n_tn
I have posted several times before but I really need HELP!  I am SCARED!!!  I HAVE gerd/ IBS and severe anxiety.. I have suffered with these for a very long time.  And have frequent flare ups!  Dont know what happens first, but know they work very good together..  about 2 months ago, we had something very bad here happened and my anxiety/depression went sky high and my symptoms with my digestive system went nuts.  I got the usual rumbling that happens up high in my chest and rumbles for hrs. and then I got pain and constipated which with my IBS its usually the opposite.. Then with the rumbling it caused a pain up under my left breast and dead center between my breasts, or where my stomach starts, lower esphagus..  It was awful.  Still after all these weeks I am still getting the rumbling after anything I eat.. And it causes pain.  I am nausea in the morning, low appetite, and when I get hungry I am so afraid to eat because of this happening... right now all is quiet, little nausea, but the minute I eat it will start.   Went to the ER 3x in the past 3 months.  Had x rays of my digestive system, stomach and colon.  Had a chest xray, bloodwork,  I had stress test,echo, EKG'S , ALOT of them.... KUB of my kidneys.. I had the endo/colonscopy 3 1/2 yrs ago... but  right now my anxiety is telling me its  something bad... cause how can this be just gerd and how can this be just IBS???  pLEASE HELP ME... Thank u
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Avatar_m_tn
Hi Breezy,

My story started the exact same as you, I was/am a singer and about 8 months ago I was diagnosed with LPR; a form of acid reflux that makes it to your throat (voiding heartburn). The problem is you are not digesting food properly and it is making it's way back up to your throat and vocal cords. The reason this started happening suddenly is because the barrier/sphincter separating your esophagus and throat eventually gave way. Research the UES and LES valves.

Please let me know if you have any questions. This is going to seem very overwhelming but don't take the easy way out on this one. Your body is warning you that something is wrong and these are some ways to help get it back to normal, working as it should.

Please take everything below with a grain of salt, I have done months of research - speaking to many sufferers who have helped themselves. Everything I say below has helped me immensely; I am not 100% but when I follow the steps below I can get pretty damn close. I am not a doctor or nutritionist, I have spoken to doctors who told me that they know this stuff helps but they are expected to prescribe medications.

-------

The first thing I did was go on Nexium, almost a month later I decided it wasn't for me and I quit cold turkey - this brought on a weekend of extreme sickness but after that I was fine. The problem with PPI's like this is the fact that they lower your stomach acid. The root problem is that you likely do not have enough stomach acid and therefore are not digesting your food properly. Quitting Nexium was a very good call for me and allowed me to begin my actual recovery, rather than just prolonging the process/problem.

The next thing is to find out if certain foods trigger the problem - this is tough to gauge but what I did in the beginning is keep a detailed food journal which allowed me to see some patterns. In general, avoid foods high in fat (especially saturated fats), dairy, caffeine, spicy foods can trigger for some people. Stick to natural foods, such as fresh veggies, berries, almonds. Take it easy on carbs, especially simple ones like white rice, white bread, pasta and also take it easy on the read meat - try to stick to fish and chicken. Make sure you're not flavouring these things with sugary sauces. This is a huge change but will make the biggest difference, just keep the end goal in mind. No amount of food is worth the destruction of your singing voice.

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From there, there are other things you can do  to help prevent re-occurrences:

-Drink organic apple cider vinegar with "the mother" 3 times per day. Put 1-2 tbsp into a glass of water; drink 1 first thing in the morning 30 mins before breakfast, 1 30 mins before dinner and 1 before bed. You can get this stuff at any health food store or some grocery stores. It may seem odd at first, but trust me, it helps a lot. This will kickstart your digestive system even before you take in your food.

-Take 2 DGL licorice tablets 20 mins before meals, chew them solely. This holds the same function as apple cider vinegar (ACV). As well take 2 digestive enzymes with your meals. All these together really aid your digestive system in getting rid of food.

-I also take HCL capsules to increase my stomach acid before a meal, I would try and get your stomach acid levels tested before trying this - it's also hard to tell how many capsules you will need to take. I'd avoid this one for now then maybe try adding it in a couple month of you find that the rest of these things aren't totally helping (though they should).

-Drink aloe vera juice in the morning and at night. Drink 1/3 cup in the morning then again at night before bed. Also eat a tablespoon of flax seeds during these times. Aloe vera helps to heal your stomach and esophagus while flax seeds keep food moving out of your stomach.

-Take your vitamins in the morning, in particular D (I take the softgels) and B12. I take vitamin C but this can aggravate it for some people, I find that if I take a lot it helps me. It's a good idea to get your vitamin levels tested.

Other general tips:

-Chew your food thoroughly and make sure you're eating frequent small meals. Don't overeat until you are full.

-Sleep on an incline by raising the head of your bed. You need at least 8 inches to make a difference. This was and is the hardest change for me - I use textbooks but am trying to figure out ways to not have to do this anymore by propping myself up against my wall. Also, sleep on your left side, this allows juices to drain easier from your throat.

-Make sure you're getting regular exercise. Don't do anything too intense as it will put a lot of pressure on your body. I do a lot of biking, walking and longboarding, which is good. I may try P90X again but will need to take it easy.

-Get tested for food intolerances like lactose and gluten. As well, get tested for low vitamin levels.

When it gets to your vocal cords like you and I, the problem has become much more severe than those with heartburn and is a lot harder to treat. Based off months of unbiased research, this is the best method I have discovered so far for our particular variation of this condition. Some with heartburn get by with minimal change. You will find that you don't. Please let me know if you have any questions.
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Avatar_m_tn
Forgot to note, watch the alcohol and stick to gin or vodka if you need to have a drink. It's not really worth giving up your social life, in my opinion so just stick to those and you should still keep progressing.

Also, drink lotsa of water but avoid water during meals and make sure it's lukewarm/room temp - not too cold. Water aids in digestion but will hinder it if your body is trying to process it while you're eating.
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329165_tn?1412685860
Hi there breezy06,

I have a long Medical History and a bit complicated.  Have Barrets Esophagus from longstanding, untreated GERD, had my Nissen Fundo done in Feb. 2012 and have also had issues with chronic throat problems and then my voice changed.  That lasted about 3 years.  I used to sing and my vocal coach and I noticed that I had trouble reaching registers.

I had no improvement after my Nissen Fundo and had to get a test done through an Otolarangologist and he recommended Botillium injections as he diagnosed me with "Chricopharengeal muscle dysfunction".  I had that done in August and have an 80% improvement on my symptoms.  Unfortunately the injection only lasts 3 months and I can feel it works out as we speak.... literally...

It is not an easy answer and not an easy problem to diagnose.

Hope the info helped you a bit and let us know how you are doing.
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