Abdominal Pains, GERD, The Cure, part 2!!
by Sickboy1, Jul 13, 2009
It all started going wrong with the first wrong diagnosis" Heartburn and abdominal pain", i was given acid blockers without even testing my stomach acid levels, my acid levels were too low, not too high, this causes "delayed gastric emptying" and this condition allows food to back flow up into the esophagus, after years of suffering from this condition, damage is done to the esophageal sphincter and it weakens and the condition gets noticeably worse, the doctors prescribe acid blockers purely to stop the stomach acids damaging and burning the esophagus, but what actually is happening is the condition is getting worse, "gastric emptying" is getting worse allowing more back flow,but we feel a bit better because it is not hurting as much when it does back flow into the esophagus, so we feel that we need them from then on and so your ready for bringing on the next stage of the illness.
What we need to realise is our Ph in the stomach ideally should be Ph2, very acidic, this is a perfect Ph level for breaking down the food, the Ph in your esophagus ideally should be 7 neutral, so just because you get acid burning your esophagus does not mean you should neutralize the acid, it only means you need to sort out the back flow issue. Imagine your acid level in your stomach was Ph4, this would still be acidic enough to damage the esophagus, but yet it is too alkaline to digest food properly, poor digestion causes "delayed gastric emptying" which as we know causes reflux, so with most people the problem is not too much acid but not enough, so if you increased your acid levels, the food would get digested properly and the reflux would not occur. Most of the other stomach ache symptoms most people describe is coming from not digesting food properly and "delayed gastric emptying". Acid blockers make this problem worse over time and so reflux becomes more frequent although not as painful, this causes the valves between the stomach and small intestines to get even more lax due to high pressure destruction and dilation, so here you are well on your way to fundoplication surgery.
Please do not think this covers all cases, a lot of people have severe "lower esophageal impedence" and do require this surgery, but i just want to point out that a lot of cases may be cured without surgery.
So i am now in a place where i am not digesting food properly, causing bloating, and nutrient deficiencies, and stomach gurgling scenes like something out of the film "Alien". Stomach acid is crucial for good health and should not be getting blocked or neutralized.

So the next step was "domperidone" an antagonist, to speed up gastric emptying, causing strong contractions throughout the esophagus, stomach and intestines, these really do work, but as with all western medicines, it has side effects, the powerful contractions can cause pains long term, in the esophagus and intestines, as my symptoms described above, the food is getting pushed through the system faster before acid has had a chance to break it down properly, the malnutrition problem gets worse when linked to acid blockers you end up with no energy and feeling unwell in general, you then start getting stressed about feeling so unwell all the time, and your health continues to spiral down.

So next the doctors try me on a muscle relaxant"antispasmodic" to reverse the side effects of the "domperidone", this causes the valves between the esophaugus, stomach and small intestines top relax also, which allows more reflux and backflow of stomach contents, now the stomach is not emptying properly again and backflow becomes worse, because the sphincter is now hardly working at all, even off the shelf drugs like "Buscopan" are well known to cause lax function of the stomach valves, so now we get "bile" also joining the party back flowing into the stomach, "delayed gastric emptying" mixed with "bile" causes a gaseous build up, the stomach wall is aggrevated and reflux becomes worse than ever, but now you have "bile" attacking you esophagus and the pain really starts, think about it, if acid blockers only give partial relief, then the pain can not be caused by acid, the acid has been neutralized, so what is aggrevating the esophagus? "BILE", a big first give away that your pain is "bile " related is exactly that" Acid blockers will only provide partial relief" other symptoms are as follows " pale stools", "high white blood cell count", "severe esophageal pains without heartburn", "burning sensation in the upper abdomen with muscle weakness and inflammation", "attacks mainly at night", "attacks brought on by fatty foods", "pain upper abdomen spreading to shoulders" but remember that esophageal spasms/pains brought on by reflux even when acid is neutralized, must eliminate acid as the cause!

So armed with all my research i demanded a PH test, and guess what, I did not have high acid levels in my esophagus but high alkaline levels, so they put doctors admitted it looks like "bile reflux" not "acid reflux", that's nice isn't it after 5 years of being on the wrong medication, 5 years of medication actually making the problem worse, i had research this myself and fought all the way otherwise i could still be getting batted back and forth with wrong medications.

Now remember back to when i spent 3 days in hospital with no medication and no food, and i felt great after, i was not eating, the bile was not being produced, the stomach was back to normal function after 3 days off the medication, funny that the cure was staring at me all along, stop all medication to get gastric emptying and acid levels back to normal and do not eat foods which promote the production of stomach bile and "fundoplication was not required", i now have the option of "bile diversion surgery" where the bile gets dumped further down the small intestines, to stop it entering the stomach, if you do not fight to find the underlying cause only "YOU" will suffer long term, "Esophageal cancer" "Stomach Cancer" is where it is ultimately heading with not much quality of life leading up.
I just hope that upon reading this, it may help some long term sufferers like myself and you can get diagnosed properly before its too late.

I have opted to not take the route of surgery for now, i am controlling my stomach bile by healthy eating, i am controlling reflux by eating small amounts regular and sleeping elevated, I am not taking any medication and gastric emptying has improved ten fold, my stomach valves are getting stronger and i am going to build on that, think about it, Q:How can bile get into your esophagus if your stomach is emptying properly? A: it can't!!

Remember where it all starts, maybe you used to over eat, maybe you just need to stop smoking, it can be a little problem that starts this whole thing, don't jump on the medication band wagon, i went to the doctors with a stomach discomfort and heartburn and ended up with a serious illness and in hospital several times, i was terrified at the thought of coming off acid blockers, i thought i would be in agony after 12 hours, the 1st day was very uncomfortable, but i did not get the "upper abdominal pain" i just ate dry toast every two hours and took sips of water in between, i could literally feel my stomach starting to digest food properly again, so there was no reflux, after sleeping elevated the next day, my stomach and body felt on the road to recovery this is just 24 hours and my body had almost returned to normal like somebody had turned the clock back 5 years.

Why are these cases increasing in number every year, 126million cases of GERD.
Acid blockers and indigestion remedies are the best selling drugs in the world, you really need to start reading about how the stomach acid works and what causes GERD before reaching for Acid blockers or Acid neutralizers ever again and doctors need to stop "putting a lid" on conditions with these medications. Good luck!
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Member Comments (43)
by Sickboy1, Jul 15, 2009
Just bumping the thread, i wonder if anybody has even read this :)
by MemaGigi, Aug 01, 2009
Very Interesing.  I have been taking Zantac for two years, but have never had a PH test.  And I still have symptoms.  I will try to get the test.
by tintin324, Aug 02, 2009
wow..thats a lot of info...u know after 4 months on meds i decided to stop..the lump on my throat did not go away and my reflux is so bad that i have halitosis every morning until now ..
by ricky195, Apr 17, 2010
that was for me the most helpful information i've ever read on this forum. you had just made a summary of my symptoms. i am on nexium for 2 years, domperidone, muscle relaxants.....the band wagon of  medicines u mentioned, but only provides relief but not solving my issues. done 2 EGD's found inflamaions. abdominal ultrasound does not show anything unusual.i had been to different drs. (internist and gi's) all they come up with is gastritis..thanks for the info and hope to hear more from you soon...
by the way aside from ph test what other test do you suggest to confirm bile reflux and what medication did your drs. gave you?
by Sickboy1, Apr 17, 2010
Sleeping elevated is a major factor in combating reflux and the discomfort of hiatal hernia.
The best way to diagnose yourself with bile reflux is to stop the medication and eat as little as possible for 24 hours fully relaxed and see if you start feeling better, then start to gradually eat little amounts of food which are low in fat and sugars.
The main thing that happens to people like us is that due to long term use of acid blockers and antagonists, we start to suffer from leaky gut syndrome, small undigested food particles start to enter the blood stream through the intestinal wall and the body sees them as alien and starts to attack, leading to severe fatigue due to malnutrition and your body using up all its remaining energy to fight off alien bodies, then we end up spending most of our time lying down which again is not good for digestion.
Once you are on that downward spiral, health just gets worse and worse until you break the cycle.

This is all about a lifestyle change, stopping medication is only part of it, i.e. never lay flat after eating, talk a steady walk instead, these are all very simple things that help get on the road to recovery but not something you intitially feel like doing when you are feeling ill and fatigued.
I do not think doctors can prescribe anything for bile reflux except acid blockers, H2H or PPI, which reduces the discomfort caused by the condition but as we know makes the condition worse at the same time, you are really the only person that can cure yourself, its all in your hands.
But i really do not want to take you down the wrong track, everybody is different, make sure you do not have a gall bladder problem, get double checked for gall stones, sometimes you can have sludge in your gall bladder which can be easily missed on a scan as it only shows up as a white mist, but is actually considered by some doctors far more dangerous than large gall stones.

You may want to also look into some other things that may help you jump start your digestive system again, i.e. colonic irrigation, they can tell you what foods to avoid by what flushes out undigested, i.e. their may be several food types that you have trouble digesting.
You may also want to try digestive enzymes, its only a natural herbal remedy but i find they really work, if i know i am going out for a big meal or am going to eat something which i know disagrees with me, i.e. pastry, i take a digestive enzyme and i can eat these foods without getting an upset stomach, maybe dairy products disagree with you or wheat? You need to find out what foods you have trouble digesting, you can also get an allergy test or look up your blood type, certain blood types are known to have trouble digesting certain types of food.

But i must reitterate, whatever you do, stop the acid blockers as they do not cure the real underlying problem, they just reduce the short term symptoms and make the long term health problems worse.
The main thing is to act quick and find the real source of the problem and break the cycle one way or another and you will be amazed by how quickly your body starts to return to normal, then you can get your life back and experience once again what it feels like to be healthy and have high energy levels, if you get reflux one day dont give in, think about what caused it, stress? a certain type of food? eating too much? smoking? Alcohol?
I still get nominal reflux every now and then but no more than any other normal healthy person and it is always self inflicted i.e. i eat a food i know disagrees with me and i have forgotten to bring along my digestive enzymes, but it is now a choice made will full awareness, it is no longer an invisible enemy i am battling.
If it is not something the doctors can help you with, like gall stones or lower esophageal impedence, then the cure lies solely in your hands.

by Sickboy1, Apr 17, 2010
sorry i forgot to mention, i assume you have been checked for H pylori?
by takemystomachplease, Apr 19, 2010
Hi thanks for the great info !!!!!!!!!!  I have IBS, Lactose Intolerance,Esopogitis,Hiatal Hernia and Gerd. I hear your suffering !!!!!  I have been prescribed every medication for this under the sun. I never heard of Bile Reflux thats interesting. I heard of the PH test, thats something Ineed to have done and have not yet. I have had an array of tests . Upper and Lower GI  Series, Endoscopy and Fluroscopy.  I suffer like a dog with the runs, constipation , farting and belching too!!!!!  I am surprised I still have a boyfriend. hence to say it's not very lady like nor attractive either. Yes i used to drink alcohol to an excess hey I am irish it's in the blood LOL.  I am a social drinker I drink rarely and when I do i limit it to two or three drinks maximum. I am also over weight  and on meds that cause weight gain and edema.  So i am fighting many issues. I have Asthma and I smoke so the acid makes those conditions worse too.  Hey thanks once again for your post.  I agree the DR's  try to help but in the lonf run misdiagnose and do us more damage.
by Sickboy1, Apr 20, 2010
I really do feel for you, there is a hell of a lot going on there for you to contend with, but it sounds like you are aware of what is contributing to the problems.
The PH test is only to measure the acidity levels in the esophagus, in preparation for Fundoplication surgery,but for me it does not address the underlying problem, the issue is whether you have low acidity levels in your stomach. that i where i began to realize that the trick is to stop stomach acids entering the esophagus, and there is a much easier way than fundoplication, and that is to get your acidity levels back to normal so that the stomach empties quickly and food is broken down properly so that nutrients can be absorbed, domperidone promotes stomach emptying and reduces reflux greatly but the side effects are too great and long term causes more damage to the natural running of your digestive system.
To summarize the PH test is only an avenue for you to seriously consider if you are suffering from severe esophageal cramps and spasms due to reflux.
I think you are one person i would definately put into my category, where you can self heal through lifestyle changes, eating, sleeping, smoking and stopping medication. The IBS is what is causing most of your flatulence and the runs, I would strongly suggest to find out what foods to avoid by allergy test and colonic irrigation.
The belching is linked in the same way and is due to poor digestion, low stomach acidity levels and bile backflow which creates excess gas in the stomach. I used to have a constant build up of gas and could not eat without belching for hours after, this has completely gone now, i virtually do not get any gaseous build up from either end which is purely down to good digestion and i can still get away with eating chocs and sweets in moderation.
I found out what was causing my problems with digestion that first made me go to the doctor all those years ago, mushrooms, pork products, fatty dairy products, pastry and onion, and too much sugar.
I also developed a lactose intolerance when i was in the depth of my illness, i also suffered from terrible IBS and had the runs all the time, but all these parts of the illness have disappeared since my digestion started running like clockwork again.

When you really look into how the digestive system works, you will see it is all linked, one problem causes another, your stomach acid is the first line of defence against bacteria, when your acid levels are low, these bacteria can enter the intestines and play havoc, when linked to partially digested food and poor motility and food allergies, it is easy to see why we end up with IBS and all the related problems, like leaky gut syndrome.

It really is all down to poor digestion, this is the key, you will find most of your complaints will disappear once you get your digestive system back on track, it is all out of whack at the moment and you just need to get it running like clockwork again.
Doctors can not help you, all they can do is keep on giving you medication which will give short term relief but will inevitably throw your system more out of whack in the long run.
The only thing i can not help you with is the asthma, but i am certain all your digestive problems can be cured fully and naturally if you take the correct course of action, all of those conditions you are suffering from are linked more cloesly that you would ever believe possible.
by Jangela, Apr 21, 2010
    You have just summed up in a few paragraphs all the things I have always believed to be true and painstakingly learned about reflux, and then some! Where were you all those years ago when my husband was in such agony? We would have rejoiced with the angels to have discovered your posts!