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Hiatal hernia?
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Hiatal hernia?

Hello.  Does this sound like a hiatal hernia?  I have lfet side pain(burning sensation) under left rib.  After a big meal or any food or drink that irritates my stomach I get a pounding sensation in my chest.  Sometimes I get dizziness and pressure in my head as well.  As well as a pain in my left side of my back behind ribcage.  Thanks so much for any insight.  
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620923_tn?1413427272

  Hi and welcome to the GERD forum.

The only way u r going  to know is go to a GI Dr and have an endoscopy....avoid foods and bevs and lifestyle choices that will cause a flare....it could be GERD or GERD from a hiatal hernia....but u will want to know so u know the best course of treatment.

Eating healthy, 4 to 5 smaller meals a day can be helpful...keep a journal to help identify ur triggers.- For more tips see the Health Pages -http://www.medhelp.org/health_pages/list?cid=236
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681148_tn?1285160820
Actually, since I've had the barium swallow done recently and will have to have the surgery for GERD (Nissen Fundoplication), that's the test that determined that I have a small hiatal hernia.  I was told that normally the hiatal hernia isn't the culprit for the symptoms.  Usually GERD is a problem with the LES (Lower Esophageal Sphincter) being too loose (and for some people the acid has erroded the LES completely).  I was told that most people have a tiny one like mine is and that this isn't typically the reason for the GERD.

Normally, just to determine if your issues are the result of GERD, the first test you will have is a pH and a manommetry test.  The pH test isn't too bad, but the manommetry test, which is performed before the pH test is done, is hard for most people.  Both tests are necessary, though.

The upper endoscopy (EGD) is also required, as was mentioned, but the pH and manommetry tests are usually required by your insurance carrier just to be able to get the prescriptions that are still covered by insurance for GERD.

Don't let them talk you into doing this surgery as a first step to resolve the issues, though.  See if you can resolve some of these issues yourself first by following some diet modifications and losing any extra weight if you can.  Some natural remedies also work for some people.  Now I know why none of them worked for me.  I have dealt with this for many years and have reason to believe I was born with this issue.  Still, I have waited and tried everything else first.  For a while I was actually able to control the symptoms, but I can't control the symptoms any longer.  It is dangerous to take the acid reducers long term or to take them as many times a day as I've been forced to.  But, it is also dangerous to let the acid get up into the esophagus, because that can lead to a pre-cancerous condition called Barrett's Esophagus.  Therefore, for me, the surgery is the lesser of these evils.

That's the long answer, but hopefully it helped to answer other questions you may have had.
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Like furballsmom, i am also planning on having a fundoplication after 22 years of severe reflux---i have developed a condition called eosinophilic esophagitis, which my Gi feels is secondary to my reflux.  I have a hiatal hernia that I'm pretty sure i developed when i was pregnant with my twins.

My youngest child was born with a hiatal hernia, which is considered a birth defect (most of us develop them later in life for one reason or another.  My daughter was on prevacid an carafate and at * months her esophagus was getting ulcerated, she was failure to thrive, anemic, and refluxing almost 25% of the time.  she had a fundoplication just before she turned 10 months old.

Honestly, the pounding in the chest and the dizziness and pressure in your head don't sound at all like symptoms of reflux.  Your liver is under your ribs on the left side.  When i used to get severe pain from my reflux, it was always in the center of my chest and the center of my back--it would sometimes go up to my neck and even make my teeth hurt.

the pain was pretty bad---but it was never a burning sensation (like you mention that you get under your left ribs)  It hurt so bad that i understand why people will end up in the ER thinking they are having a heart attack.

I have trouble with food getting stuck and I have had to have my esophagus dilated 4 times--3 times I have had a shotzky's ring, which is a narroew band of tissue that has to be fractured to help dilate my esophagus.

The eosinophilic condition has caused physical changes to my esophagus--I have rings in my esophagus and I also have furrows that run up and down my esophagus.

furballsmom---I have fought taking the PPis for years.  i have always felt like I wouldn't absorb my foods or my medications properly---i did once run into a medication that was not compatible with the PPIs.     Plus, I always remember the pediatric surgeon, who did my daughter's surgery, telling me that he didn't think it was a good idea to change the natural PH balance of the stomach for a long time-----he tried to tell me over 8 years ago that I should have surgery, too.
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