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DESPERATE FOR HELP!! Rapid heartbeat when swallowing, BAD ACID REFLUX o...
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DESPERATE FOR HELP!! Rapid heartbeat when swallowing, BAD ACID REFLUX or WHAT?--Please Help!!!

DESPERATE FOR HELP!!

Hello, I am a 38 year old female who has suffered from GERD for approximately 18 years. Throughout these years I have been on and off PPI's.  Prilosec seems to be the only one that has worked after trying numerous kinds thru the years.  I have had esophageal dilitations because of esophageal strictures and hiatal hernia, which was diagnosed many years ago. I have learned the necessary dietary restrictions and lifestyle modifications seeing as I have suffered from this problem for so long.  I receive yearly scopes to check for any abnormalities and the likes.  For the past 12 years I have pretty much had a handle on things. I know what to eat and what not to eat.  There have even been periods of a couple of years at a time throughout the past 18 years that I went medication free and ate whatever I wanted.....which is why I simply refuse surgery to correct the LES/Reflux.  Why did I get well for years at a time, and then it come back?  I think I know the answer to this, but my problem today is..........

Approximately 1 month ago I decided to eat Activia yogurt for 14 days because I was told that it would help with my reflux problem. Desperate to be off meds, I gave it a try knowing that I had not eaten any milk products for the past 16 years because they caused bad acid for me.  At first it was working for me and I was able to eat foods that I hadn't eaten in years, beans, cabbage, lettuce, cucumbers, greens all because they make my acid and gas worse. Well,  on the morning of the 15th day I woke up at around 4am with horrible gas and could feel the acid burning in my chest like a fire.  I took my usual swig of Maalox and 2 simethicone tabs which I keep by my bed because I have had this happen before, however on this particular morning it was 20x's worse.  I ending up calling 911 because my heart was racing like never before.  In the ambulance my heartrate was 198.  I was given 2 doses of the horrible medication adenosine, which did not work in lowering my heartrate. I was hospitalized for observation and it was noted that when walking or swallowing my heartrate would go from a normal resting heartrate of 80 UP TO 130-150 BEATS PER MINUTE.

Around the same time all of this began, I also received and IV of iron(Venofer) 2 days prior to calling 911. I am anemic and cannot take oral iron supplements due to the acid reflux, so I receive IV iron. However, I had never received venofer.  I had previously been given Ferrlicit.  I also have Hashimoto's Thyroiditis. I also recenlty underwent abdominal surgery for uterine fibroids.  Just wanted to give my hystory.

FOR THE LAST MONTH I HAVE BEEN ABSOLUTELY MISERABLE.  Every time I swallow or walk, my heart races. As long as I am sitting/resting it is normal.  I have had every heart test done, 24 hour holter, EKG, stress test, lab tests, barium swallow, x-rays, ct scans, seen by a cardiologist, hematologist, gastroenterologist, electrophysiologist, endocrinologist...and the works.  All heart tests and studies have been absolutely normal.  My only symptom is ACID REFLUX!!!

Can someone please tell me if bad acid reflux can cause this and what to do about it.  The doctors that I have seen have very clearly informed me that they have never seen a case like mine and simply don't know what to do. They don't know why my heart races only when I walk or swallow.  I have been doing research in an attempt to help myself and have read that the vagus nerve may have become irritated from severe acid since I ate the yogurt for 14 days, which was a big mistake....I have not eaten any milk products in over 16 years because they cause horrible acid reflux and gas.  I pretty sure I started this with eating the yogurt and all those other foods.....I just don't know how to fix it or why it is affecting my heart in this way.  In the past I have had palpitations with acid reflux, but nothing like this that occurs with each swallow.  And my symptoms did not began until I changed my diet and consumed the yogurt and other foods.

I am desperate for any suggestions.....please help!!
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Hi you poor thing...I do feel for you...I have suffered for 20 odd years with missed beat , fluttering....and it is so worring when it happens  dont know if telling you about myself will help you...but the last few months I have been waking up in the morning and feeling sick...about 4 weeks ago I started having a gripping pain under the left side under in ribs...this then went to my right side then around my stomach..then to the middle of my back...I never stop belching..I had my heart racing...ended up going to my doctor about 3 times in one week plus ...taken off to A&E  three time because I got into such a state...never slept for nearly two weeks..had racing heart and chest was tight..my doctor first said I had IBS..so gave me Buscapan...that didnt help...had blood test they were all normal....went to see Specialist in Gasto...I had ultrastound,CT scan, and endocospy..they were all normal....he said last week when I went to get results that he think iam stress and very anxious..admitted I thought I had a cancer of some sort...I have just lost a very close friend to cancer I it has played on my mind...when I went to A & E they gave a me a injection of Buscapan and my heart rate went to 170 so I ended up in  resus...the docs were more worried about my heart then my pain I came in with....my heart started to come down...I have had every test under in sun for my heart over the years...about 4-5 years they got to the bottom of it after having a device called a Reveal sewn  under my skin above my heart and when I had my fluttering and missing beats it recorded them, its a marvelous thing..they told me I have a peice of tissue in my heart that interfere's with electric's and stress plus other things set's it off i could have a proceedure that burns off the tissue ..they do it though your groin through the vein while your wake...I didnt like the sound of it...so i have left well alone..the doctor tells me its not dangerous what my heart does but it make me feel terrible and then I get more anxious...so I put up with it...Tony Blair had this proceedure also ...he is braver then me!
But getting back to my pains....I dont like feeling bloated and not sleeping well with all this...do you think mine is acid...my heart racers quiet a bit since this has all started...
I hope I might have helped you a bit...
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Thanks so much for responding.  I am sorry to hear about your recent loss.  I am 100% convinced that my symptoms are being caused by acid reflux.  After being a long time sufferer I have previously experienced palpitations and for long periods could not lay on my left side because I would have palpitation after palpitation.  Unfortunately most doctors seem to be in denial about acid reflux having a connection with the heart, but after researching it for myself I am convinced that it does.  Whenever my acid went away, the heart palpitations went away.  I just simply don't understand why now that my acid systems are aggravated this time it is causing my heart to race. It's never done that before.  I am even wondering if there is the remote possibility that the abdominal surgery I had in July is playing a part in this strange new symptom I am having.  I was told that my abdominal area had to be held open so all of my organs, intestines, etc. were pushed upward in order to perform the surgery. I am wondering is because my symptoms seem to be aggravated with positioning like when I stand up to walk if somehow my organs could be shifted a little out of position due to the surgery.  Don't know if this is possible.  If anyone knows please let me know.

The reason that I know that my symptoms are being caused by acid is because initially when I visited the ER by heartrate would go into the 130-150 range when walking or swallowing.  Now after being on the Prilosec for a month when I walk or swallow it only goes to about 100-105.  So the Prilosec is helping.....however.... Last night I awoke out of sleep at 2am and it was beating 175, but I could definitely feel the acid burning and lots of gas circulating in my chest area.  I could lay my hand on my chest and feel the gas moving.  I think I may have caused myself to relapse because for the last 2 day I started taking iron supplements because my iron is so low I feel crappy all the time but as we all know...what does iron do?.....aggravate the stomach and cause reflux.  I notice that these symptoms are worse when my stomach is empty....like 2am in the morning.    

Have you ever tried any of the PPI's to see if your symptoms would disappear?  Although PPI's are not the best treatment as I have learned they can further complicate the problem because they stop the production of stomach acid and that's not good for our stomach, as it it supposed to naturally produce acid.  However, when the situation is dire, they can be very useful. But it is best to try and avoid them.

I am absolutely convinced that my problems started 18 years ago after being hospitalized for an infection and I received massive doses of antibiotics.  After being released that's when the acid reflux began.  As I said earlier there have been periods that I went completely symptom free for years only to have it return, but I have narrrowed down when it returns.  It only returns after I take antibiotics.  About 1 year ago, I was doing absolutely fine, eating whatever.  The doctor told me that I tested positive for H. Pylori, the bug that causes stomach ulcers and she treated me with 2 antibiotics.  That's when the roller coaster started again.  It wasn't until after the fact that I found out that not only was she supposed to give me the 2 antibiotics, but she was also supposed to prescribe a PPI along with them, which she didn't.  The gas, belching, and reflux then all started again.  I do also think that excessive gas can get caught in the chest and cause the heart to race.

The unfortunate thing is that doctors are so quick to throw different meds at you without trying to get to the bottom of what is actually causing the problem.  When this all started for me I literally had a large black garbage bag full of different meds that had been given to me by different doctors.  Thank goodness I had the knowledge not to take them and to research them first.  Even though they may have been only trying to help we have to remember that they are not in OUR bodies.  Noone knows your body better than you.  They have a license to practice medicine, and sometimes that's exactly what they are doing.....practicing.  It has been very frustrating and I have found it very difficult to find a doctor that would actually take the time to listen and try to help.  Most of my help has come from me helping myself and listening to other people's stories.

I can't say that yours is caused by acid, but I just know that it can affect the heart in many ways and cause all types of very strange unexplainable symptoms. Why did the doc think you had IBS?  What were your symptoms?  Sounds like the procedure you are talking about is ablation.  When I saw the electrophysiologist he did say that he doesn't think I would be a candidate for this procedure and he is the only one that has actually said it may be an irritated vagus nerve from the reflux but I still get concerned because it is not a good feeling when your heart races that fast and no matter what the docs say you still think somewhere in the back of your mind that it is life-threatening or I wonder if they could be wrong.  I personally think that there are some people that have had ablations unnecessarily when there problems were actually being caused by reflux.....but that's just my opinion.  

You may wanna look up the acid reflux diet and try it and see it it helps.  I personally am trying a candida-free, gluten-free diet at the present time as I have read that this helps tremendously with overproduction of stomach acid.  Hope this helps!  
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I really feel for all of you...I had stomach and esophageal problems for a long time and am doing well now - I cannot say what it is or isn't but I just want to add some things that helped me with my rapid heartbeat and swallowing issues, acid reflux etc.

They probably won't be life altering but some may help.

I stay away from all things gassy: broccoli, cabbage, beans, popcorn, canteloupe, etc. I don't care how much I crave them! Vinegar and anything with vinegar is another problem for me. I am reading a book by Dr. Christiane Northrup and she believes we don't have the proper balance of stomache acid and to help with that she says "low glycemic" foods are the answer.

Also, chew gum! It helps with the swallowing and the saliva it creates soothes the throat. A & W Root Beer (of course not in large quanitites as it has high sugar content) is amazing! It has cherry bark in it, no citric acid and no caffeine. It also causes you to belch your way to feeling better. Sip as needed.

And...acidophillus in pill form. They have delicous fruity chewable tablets too. When you start to feel that acid and stomach/esophagus problem creeping up on you, pop an acidophillus pill (follow guidelines on the bottle and from your Doc).

Finally, low sodium crackers and graham crackers (another good mystery food that helped me).

Of course stay away from mint, chocolate and caffeine which keeps the upper sphincter open and allows food to go up into your esophagus.

When I stopped taking Benadryl for post nasal drip, a side effect from H Pylori treatment with Flagyl (nasty stuff - I wouldn't recommend it!) my heart beat was fine. Too much gas sometimes causes what feels like 'irregular' heartbeats.

I hope maybe some of this will cause some comfort to you...my prayers go out for all of you. Take good care!
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I just went to Urgent Care tonight for rapid heartbeat while swallowing food.  The EKG confirmed it --my heart goes from that of a fit athletete into hyperdrive when I swallow food.  I have a feeling it's gastrointestinal as years ago they discovered the H.Pylori bacteria in my stomach when I was having cronic (chronic) heart burn -but the doctor is going to consult with a cardiologist and thought I might need meds.  Are these the same symptoms you had?  Did you take any meds that worked or was it controlled strictly by diet?  I'm really freaked out ---I've always been super healthy.
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Wow!  I have so much to say on this topic.  I saw the electrophysiologist on today.  This is probably the type of doc you will need.  He is still a cardiologist but specializes in the electrical activity in the heart.  He informed me that after reviewing all of my results, holter, echo, ekg, tilt table that I do not have an abnormal electrical circuit in my heart causing it to race, that I am simply having tachycardia of unknown origin and that he has no cure for that.  He offered me a beta blocker along with the thousand other doctors that I have seen.  They have all tried to force me to take a beta blocker to lower my heart rate but I simply refuse because when I did the 24 hour holter monitor testing at night when I am asleep my heart rate was 45, and my blood pressure has been 90/60.  Well, beta blockers lower the heart rate and blood pressure even more and I personally feel that I don't want my heart rate to go lower than 45 or my blood pressure to bottom out.  Saying that I must say to you that one of the best things that you can do is exactly what you are doing here on this forum.......research things for yourself.  You know your body.  Like I explained to the doc, if I take a beta blocker and at night my heart rate or bp drops too low and becomes life threatening or fatal for me....you know what.....tomorrow his life will continue as usual....and mine won't.  I will tell anyone, research things for yourself.  That few minutes you spend talking to the doc is not enough time for them to accurately get a full picture of everything.  Unless I have a documented heart problem and as long as the tests show I have a healthy heart I simply refuse to take a heart medication.  Makes sense to me.

You asked it I had the same symptoms.  I can say that when I swallowed my heart rate usually never went higher than 140-145, but it started out at 80 before swallowing, so that's pretty significant.  For the last 6 weeks I have been on Prilosec 60mg per day.  The doc prescribed 40mg per day but after 2 weeks when I saw that my symptoms were not improving and could feel the acid breakthrough and burning, especially in the early morning hours (3am), I increased it myself.  Unfortunately concerning this situation my docs haven't been very helpful so I have had to take matters into my own hands.  I definitely wouldn't advise this to anyone, but I am in the medical field myself so I am aware of more than the average person.  Which is why I have first hand experience of docs and how they try and pacify patients and sometimes cause more harm than good.  Anyways, after being on the prilosec now when I swallow my heart rate only goes to about 100.  So thank heavens it's improving.  I know for a 100% fact that my symptoms were brought on by GERD because of some stupid dietary changes that I made.

Let me tell you that GERD affects each person differently.  I have to agree with alot of what Peppermint88 said about the different foods to stay away from but I personally feel that my symptoms have improved since I went on a yeast-free, extremely low carb, wheat free, gluten free, dairy free, soy free diet.  It is an extremely hard diet to follow but I have found that acid DOES NOT LIKE CARBS.  Cut the carbs, and the acid improves greatly.  My diet consists of chicken(without antibiotics), turkey, fish, and vegetables.  I get the chicken raised without antibiotics because I think that's what alot of the problem is being caused by, the antibiotics wiping out all of our good bacteria.  Seems like the entire world has acid reflux and it has to be caused by what we are eating.  

Now, the good news is if you scroll to the top of this page and in the "search medhelp" box and type in "irregular heartbeat and swallowing" and do the search the 4th post that it brings up will be titled "irregular heartbeat and swallowing".  Click on that and scroll down and the 4th post will be by a guy named "Charlie".  Read that post.  I agree with what he is saying.  Thank God we aren't the only ones who have had this RARE condition.  This condition is called deglutition tachycardia. I think he left out the letter "d" in deglutition.  Trying to find a doc who is familiar with this condition is like searching for a needle in a haystack.  But as you can see he did and I agree wholeheartedly when he says that the doc he spoke with says that it is caused by prolonged GERD that has irritated the vagus nerve.  But thank God, it goes away and heals with treatment on acid blocking medications.

So this may be what you are experiencing.  Once all cardiac test have been ran if they all come out negative, then you know it's not your heart and probably the GERD.  That GERD is such an awful thing.

Good luck.....let me know how it goes....I will be checking the forum.
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My husband suffers from acid reflux how can I help him? I heard citrus and carbs are not good,  what about onions? what foods can he eat?
Thank you
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I'm so sorry you had a flare up again! It must be awful. When I had the H Pylori problems I did have a rapid heartbeat, severe bloating and pain in my stomach but after taking the meds (sometimes the cure is worse than the disease!) I had severe throat pain and was out of breath and tired alot. Also, I ended up having some swallowing problems, uncoordination of the esophagus and was put on Reglan and then later Bentyl. Reglan has some creepy side effects but I never experienced any and it turned out to be a Godsend.

I am now on pepcid as needed and simethicone to break up any gas. I also had to have my gallbladder removed - a separate issue. JayFaith, I thought your rapid heartbeat sounded like it might have to do with your esophageal stricture that you had problems with prior. Do you still have problems with that, with swallowing? Are you anxious when swallowing food?

When I was having rapid heartbeats (I got off Benadryl and they went away and also stay off MSG) the first thing the ER nurse asked me was if I had trouble swallowing so I think you should push to be further diagnosed.

Also...JayFaith, it sounds like it could be linked to your Thyroid problem and Curious51 HAVE YOU HAD YOUR THYROID checked? I would think it would be one of the first things a doc would look for. If not, do it right away!

Acid reflux can cause a number of things like you all describe!
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Just when I thought I was doing better and making baby steps to well-being I had a setback.  I have visited the ER 4 times in the last 2 days with heartrates in the 170-180 range.  

Thanks Peppermint88 about my thyroid and stricture.  I had a barium swallow done 2 weeks ago.....no stricture.  I saw my endocrinologist about my thyroid also.  I have hypothyroidism and as the endocrinologist explains to me, this would make my heart beat slower, not faster.  You get a fast heartbeat when you have hyperthyroidism(Graves disease), but thanks for the advice.

I decided to switch from the Prilosec to Prevacid yesterday, however I have experienced tremendous burning all day today and will be switching back to the Prilosec on this evening.  At least I know it was working for me.  I am going to cut back and only try 40 mg instead of 60mg because I don't like the side effects that I get from Prilosec, but I have no choice....gotta take something and it seems like all the PPI's cause pretty much the same side effects.

During my 4 visits to the ER, where I cried and begged and pleaded for help......absolutely NOONE was willing to admit me to the hospital and do further testing to find out what is going on.  I realize that my only help at this point is God.  Even with my Mom there begging for someone to help me....they all refused.  I have to say that it is sad that people can be so cruel.  All I want them to do is to admit me and do tests on my stomach/esophagus.....a ph probe, esophageal manometry and the likes in a controlled environment so that I can stop running to the ER every time I have the rapid heartbeat.  In most cases I do try and sit it out at home but then my better judgement tells me to go ahead and have it checked out anyway because I certainly don't want to be a statistic.  I have to say Peppermint88 that I am not in any way anxious or excited when it happens or when I am swallowing.  From being in the medical field I have learned all the coping techniques and remain very calm each time.

As I sit thinking today what I know for a fact is that each episode only occurs between 2am and 5am.  Now if it where my heart I don't think it would wait between these hours to act up so I feel a little better with this rationalization.  However, I did come up with the fact that this is about the time that the Prilosec is wearing off, even though it's supposed to be delayed release I notice that it usually only lasts me about 8 hours.  Also this is when my stomach is empty.  I guess the acid just gets to churning and coming up into my esophagus which kicks off my heart.  I also noticed one other thing.....I have been on the candida diet (yeast free) on and off.  I noticed that I have the rapid heartbeat episodes every time I strictly adhere to the diet.  Well, I just found an article that said that when you are on this diet you must be very careful because you can kill off the candida in your body at too fast a rate and it will release toxins into the bloodstream and cause the body to become even MORE acidic.  I think I'm gonna leave this diet alone until I can get the acid under control.....however.....it does work because I feel less acid when on it but I think that I have so much yeast in my body that when it starts dying off it is causing me to become too acidic......which has led to my rapid heartbeats.

Anyways..... in response to 2shoshana I would definitely advise staying away from onions.  Every person is different when it comes to acid reflux and some can tolerate foods that others can't.  He probably just needs to do an elimination diet and when he runs across a food that aggravates his reflux then he will know to leave it out.  It just depends on how bad his reflux is.  Some main foods that make is worse are definitely acid containing foods/fruits/beverages, chocolate, caffeine, fried(greasy) foods, and spicy foods.

Thanks guys for your responses.....it helps so much having someone to talk to about these things.
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Hello- I just totally feel for you...my heart is so heavy when I read your posts - I am sorry you are feeling this way. My prayers went out for you just now.

I remember being in burning pain in my esophagus after treatment for H pylori (I swear the Flagyl gave me the acid reflux!) and it did take many, many months before I felt better again.

My endoscopy showed a very red, inflamed stomach lining because of the H Pylori and treatment. It was slow going and alot of pain to the point I really thought I was ruined for life; I thought I might never find joy.

I had to really adhere to stay away from anything gaseous and eat very mild, bland things only. For instance I would have 1/2 a banana a day only to find out later they were contributing to the gas problem and the pain would go into my back and joints - very painful. I had to give up my beloved bananas....

On top of that I had to have my gallbladder out and I began to get better...I think it was 2 different things at once but not related.

I know that when you have acid reflux if it comes up to your aorta (you may not even have burning or know it is there) that could be acting like a gag reflex sending your heart racing - that sounds very logical.

Have you raised the head of your bed 6 inches and does that even help?  I got off the PPI asap because you have to have some acid - it sounds like your upper sphincter is not closing - could that be the problem?

If you are overweight or have lost elasticity in your LES then food and liquid will try to go up your esophagus.  Small, frequent, bland meals help - no mint of any kind or chocolate, alcohol or caffeine... (I do swear by A & W root beer sipped in small quantities - it has cherry bark which has helped my stomach immensely!)

When you to to the ER they will do NOTHING for you in the way of tests. I know this by experience. Unless you are a 'life or death' situation. The one ER doc, who wasn't very nice but at least truthful, said to me: "Look, I can't authorize tests to be run on you - my job is to see you make it through the night and maybe take away some paian, so you can see your regular physician tomorrow. That's all."

They gave me the green drinkable lidocaine-type stuff to numb my throat and stomach but of course it doesn't last long and it really numbs your mouth and all but not for long - I was scared to take it but eventually the pain overruled any side effects I was scared of!

Keep saltless crackers by your bed and raspberry tea or A & W root beer and before bed, nibble and sip. When you wake up in the middle of the night do the same only small quantities. Also, raise your bed at the head area like I mentioned before, 6 inches.

Ask your Doc about chewable acidophillus and enzymes to help with getting your good stomach bacteria back up to a good level - also what about Pepcid or Tagament - they reduce acid but don't stop it completely. And sip water all day long and chew gum! It creates saliva which soothes the throat.

I am praying for you!
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p.s. food allergies causing rapid heartbeat, maybe???
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One more!

Going over your previous posts YES! Antibiotics causing problems...whenver I went to the dentist to have my teeth cleaned I had to take them because they thought I had a heart murmur (which is now gone) and I would have problems after like acid reflux and trapped gas.

Sometimes when I would skate with my kids I would have this sharp pain (like a knife) go thru what felt like my heart - I would learn later it was 'gas'!!

When I had my gallbladder out the nurse told me to get moving right away because the CO2 gas they pump you up with during surgery can get caught up in your shoulder blades and they say the pain is excruciating. I got shuffling - didn't want to experience that on top of everything else.

Pain = rapid heartbeat

So, if that's the case it will take some time to heal your stomach/esophagus lining but it should heal! May I ask what type of antibiotics you were put on?
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It's funny that you mentioned the banana because when I have my very first ever bout of acid reflux/gas it started after eating a banana.  This was about 20 years ago and I went flying to the ER with rapid heartbeat and heart attack symptoms.  The crazy thing is right now the docs are telling me that my potassium is a little low and all of the foods that are high in potassium I cannot eat, nor can I take the potassium pill cause they make the reflux even worse and I dare not eat a banana.

I do have some good news today.  Even though I still had the bouts of tachycardia I did notice that the swallowing-induced tachycardia has gone.  I can now swallow without my heart racing, however when I am walking it still beats fast (110-120), so I am halfway there. I am going to attribute this to God and to the Prilosec actually working to heal my esophagus and vagus nerve.  However, the Prilosec seems to be giving me some pretty bad side effects.  I can take one 20mg and be okay, but it seems that if I take more than that I get this awful heart pounding.  So after speaking with my gastroenterologist on today who actually called me at home to see how I was doing, we decided to try prilosec in the a.m. and pepcid in the evenings.  I pray that this works for me.

I did find an article that talks about the vagus nerve.  Again, I think this is the reason that I am experiencing all of these crazy symptoms.  When I am sitting, my heart rate will be in the 50's.  Even though I am 5'7" and 150 pounds I am in no way athletic and actually have not worked out in about 8 years so I should not have the heart rate of an athlete at rest.  This kinda tells me that because the vagus nerve controls the heart that is the reason why my heart rate goes low and high.  When the nerve is irritated, things are just out of control.  God I just pray that once this reflux is under control all of this will go away for good.  It is a daily fight and struggle and no one would understand unless they could walk in your shoes.  Thanks so much for your prayers.  I really appreciate that.

Peppermint I was put on amoxicillin and clarithromycin.  The doc neglectfully forgot to add the prilosec to the regiment.  Maybe I wouldn't have been so bad off if she had given me the prilosec to take with it like you are supposed to.  I wish I could turn back time and have never taken them. Prior to taking them I could eat ANYTHING and was not on any type of acid med or medication for anything.  After taking them the acid has been out of control and I also developed a severe case of acne.  I personally thinks this points to killing off all the good bacteria.  I am going to try and take some probiotics as soon as my stomach settles down. I am afraid to take them right now.  I do have 2 large bottles of the infamous GI cocktail that they give you at the ER.  You are right, all is does is numb your mouth and as soon as it wears off the reflux comes back even worse.  I haven't even used them at all.  Thanks for the advice about the crackers.  I have been nibbling on them whenever I feel the burning and it does help.  Got a pack by my bedside right now.  

I worked for a doc a couple of years back and he was doing research and writing a book about H Pylori.  He actually feels that we need H Pylori in our stomachs.  Even though the medical community is totally against this and would vastly disagree I am beginning to agree with him because as long as I had the H Pylori in my stomach......I WAS FINE....PERFECTLY FINE.  Sometimes you just don't know what to believe.  I just know that I went downhill after taking those stupid antibiotics.
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Avatar_n_tn
I am so glad to hear some good news! It will probably be a long, slow process but you sound like you've really done your homework and all that you've experienced has helped you to make the right decisions and there is light at the end of the tunnel.

I'm glad your Doc is having you give pepcid a try and I hope it works for you. I agree, we do need a bit of H Pylori but when it is overgrown, as in my case, then there are symptoms and I was terrified of the dreaded stomach cancer, which very well might be caused by H Pylori, so I took the treatment.

Only after did I get the acid reflux (I think it was the Flagyl) and it took years to get back to being somewhat normal. Your weight and height are fine so is doesn't sound as if you have any type of hiatal hernia so that's always good.

I'm glad the crackers are working - try graham crackers also, for a sweet treat - don't know what's in those either but they soothe (invented by a Monk, go figure, haha).

Isn't it odd that 2/3rds of Asia's population has overgrown H Pylori. At 18, they give everyone an endoscopy - well, they do eat a lot of pork there and in some areas, dogs -and I read a while back that they have found H Pylori in cat and dog saliva!

I always tell parents don't let the animals lick their kids' faces - yuk! Anyway, it's such a coincidence but it can be found in tainted drinking water as well so it's amazing that we all don't have overgrown H Pylori.

Anyway, please keep me posted on your progess! :)
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Avatar_f_tn
Hello.....I am hoping that you are still checking the boards. Was on my way to Mayo and decided to go to Houston, Texas.  They have some pretty prestigious facilities there and they were only 3 hours away, compared to 18 hours away to Mayo.  Immediately upon going to an ER there, I was admitted for rapid heartbeat and malnutrition.  It had gotten to the point that my heartrate was not only increasing when swallowing or walking, but also sitting.  I was malnourished because I had literally been surviving on chicken, rice, and crackers.....not to mention that I am very anemic.  I was at a world renowned facility so I just knew things would go great.  Well, let me tell you....they didn't.  They docs were horrific.  After being evaluated all they came up with was that barium swallow and endoscopy showed that I had reflux and a small hiatal hernia.  They were all very perplexed about the tachycardia when swallowing and just kept saying they had never seen anything like it.  When they couldn't come of with an answer for it I guess they didn't want to feel stupid and decided to send a psychiatrist to my room.  They actually tried to say that I was having anxiety and that I was a hypochondriac.  Now how could I possibly be having an anxiety attack every time I stood up to walk or swallowed. They had me on telemetry heart monitors and would come running to my room to check on me because my heartrate would be so elevated and I would only be standing up brushing my teeth.  HOW IN THE WORLD COULD THIS BE ANXIETY!!  To make a long story short after 5 days, when they wanted to try experimental meds on me and I refused, they got mad and discharged me. And boy do I mean they got mad....one doc even stormed out of my room.  I have never in my life seen or experienced anything like this.  I am now able to look back on it and see that it was probably due to the fact that I had too much knowledge.  I wasn't just some patient that would say "yes" to anything.  I always had questions, wanted rationales and researched everything, which I came to find out they did not like.  Thank God I refused because if I hadn't I might not be here today.  Thank God I had the knowledge to research everything before agreeing to there plan.  So I went back home, still suffering.  It was then that I said that I have to be going thru all of this suffering for a reason.  There must be a lesson for me to learn from all my suffering, hardships, and unbelieveable trial. And when I say unbelieveable, I meant it because I came across some docs that seemed like they were partners witht he devil.  I then realized my lesson was to learn something that I had been taught all of my life and that was to PRAY FIRST! before making any decisions.  So many times we are taught these things and never actually apply them to our lives......so I prayed.....and let God lead me.

And he led me back to Houston, to a gastro doc.  When I went to see him I actually took my pulse ox monitor that I had been using at home to measure my pulse, plugged it in while I was waiting for him to come into the room, and demonstrated for him what was happening when I swallowed.  He was astounded and said once again that he had never seen anything like it.  At this point I had lost 30 lbs, the last 10 of it being during the last 6 days.  He said that if I had not brought my machine into his office that he would not have believed me because just looking at me I did not look sick.  

It was a crazy worldwind even for me because every time I would take an acid reducing med, and I tried 6 different ones, the burning and swallowing problem would get horribly worse, which was absolutely crazy.  This is when I started thinking, maybe its not "acid" reflux, cause if it was "acid", the meds would be working and not making me worse.  I kept telling the docs this and they would look at me in disbelief like how could the acid meds make the burning worse.  Well, while I was in the hospital in order to do the testing I needed, I had to come off all meds.  When I did, I immediately stopped having the racing heartrate that I would get occasionally that would be in the 180"s, still had the tachycardia, just not as bad.  Acid meds were making me worse!!

The good and bad news is that they DID find what was wrong with me.  Had a 24 hour ph probe done that showed that I was not having acid reflux, well only a trivial amount which is normal seeing as how I have a small hiatal hernia.  They then did some new test called an impedance test, which is very similar to the ph probe but it looks for other types of reflux instead of acid.  I had never heard of this test before.  Well the source of all my problems has been BILE REFLUX and what alot of people don't know is that bile reflux does not like acid meds.....they only make the bile reflux worse.  I even found studies that had been done on this.  The crazy thing is for the last month I had been telling docs that I thought it was bile reflux, but none of them would listen to me.  The bile reflux was so bad that it has caused some damage to my esophagus, but from what they say, hopefully once I get it controlled with meds...Questran for now, the damage will reverse itself.  This was determined by an esophageal manometry test.  When I swallow my esophagus is having a harder time opening and closing from the bile damaging it over the last 3 months, which would then set my heart in motion and I would get the rapid heartbeat because my esophagus is trying so hard to open and let the food thru.  I just started the Questran on last night and am praying that it will work.  The crazy thing is that my entire life I had always had acid reflux and remember all of this started when I ate the activia yogurt and got the IV iron infusion.  I am not sure if the activia helped the acid reflux, because based on my testing it is virtually non-existent, but I flipped over to the other end of the spectrum and now have bile reflux.  I am not sure what exactly happened to the eco system in my intestines and plan on seeking the help of a Natural/Holistic medicine docs in hope of finding out what happened.  Western medicine does not believe a lot in theories such as the "leaky gut syndrome" which is what I think I have.  By cutting out all sugars in my diet, eating the activia, and receiving the iron infusion, I personally believe that I significanlty messed up the balance of bacteria in my digestive system which has caused all of my distress and dismay.  I have actually found much research to prove this.  I also in the past 6 years had become highly allergic to meds that I had not previously been allergic too and could never find a reason why and when I researched "leaky gut syndrome", I had all the symptoms, especially the candida overgrowth and I came to find out that the iron that was pumped into my veins was "iron sucrose" in other words, "sugar" which only fed the candida/yeast and the iron fed the bad bacteria.  So even though for now the Questran is only a temporary fix cause I don't think I'll be normal again until I get that bacteria balanced out, I am happy because at least I have an answer. I just wanna go to that other hospital and all the other docs I saw that thought I was making it up and give them a piece of my mind.  It's so sad that they only focus on acid.  There are probably so many people suffering for no reason.  It was so horrific for people to try and make it seem like you are crazy.  I am so saddened by the state of medical care in the U.S. today and my heart weaps for the elderly people who are being pumped with meds they probably don't even need and some who have probably went to an early grave because of it.  Girl, it has been a long trip for me and I know that I still have a long ways to go to total well-being....but I am just thankful that I am headed in the right direction now.


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Avatar_f_tn
By the way, thanks so much for all of your prayers, advice, and support.  I think more docs should be doing that impedance testing cause there are probably so many people thinking they have acid reflux when it's not acid at all, it's reflux, just not acid reflux.

I'll keep you posted.
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Avatar_n_tn
Glad to read you're making progress.  Be careful about getting your expectations up for Natural/Holistic healers, though.  I saw some alternative medicine advisors to help me with my Ulcerative Colitis and frankly, 10 minutes on the internet was more helpful.  Apply as much diligence to their advice as you do with regular docs.
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Avatar_f_tn
Folks;
I too am kind of in your world of acid reflux. Mine is somewhat silent if that's the cause of my repeated subglottic stenosis.  I am going in for my 3rd surgery in a couple weeks in the last 2.5 years(insane). The surgeon is estimating the repeated throat closing due to acid reflux.(not sure I believe this) He put me on 80 mg of Prilosec a day and I don't like the long term effects of this and DO believe the stomach acids are important. I've been following your post and really didn't consider the whole antibiotic meds in the food we eat. That's a very good point!! The last few months, I'm been graduating to foods with less of the garbage in it, more whole foods and less processed. I can't do the soy(yet), but I keep trying. At this point if I can get away from the artificial things in foods I'm hoping that helps, along with less carbs etc.  

My throat(this time)isn't as bad as the first time it almost was 90% blocked, I could barely breathe. After this surgery I'm going to a homeopathic dr to see if she can help.  I also am going to a gastronentrologist and request more extensive testing and to see if he thinks the Prilosec I'm on is that necessary. After his diagnosis I will decide on whether I will continue taking meds. I might just go off everything and see what happens. The purpose of me taking them in the first place was to avoid multiple surgeries but it appears they aren't working and I'm still creating scar tissue in my throat so this is why I'm getting frustrated and want to quit it all and go natural.  

Isn't there a self-home test you can do to determine the acid levels you might have? I thought I read something somewhere.

Any advice/help/wisdom on this issue would be helpful. I'm here(on this site) to try to find some answers on my own.
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Avatar_f_tn
Well, I have landed myself back in the hospital again.  Questran didn't work, Welchol didn't work for the bile reflux.  After I took them burning was massive and got another run of tachycardia with heartrate at 170.  Does anyone please have any ideas on how to control bile reflux or something that works.  Still have not determined why I am having bile reflux, did Hida scan yesterday and waiting on results. Not sure why it just appeared all of a sudden. Could it have been something I caused when I changed my diet as I speak of in my earlier posts?  Still having the tachycardia when swallowing and ambulating.  Low potassium, low iron, low white count, slightly elevated lipase.  I have to stop this massive burning in my stomach, intestines, and chest.  It is causing damage to my esophagus and heart.  I am being told by the docs here at this major medical facility that they don't know what else to do for me and they are considering sending me to Mayo, Cleveland Clinic, or John Hopkins.  Anyone have any ideas as to which of these clinics would be best.  I need a top notch facility.  I am still desperate. Any ideas or suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
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Avatar_f_tn
what do you think of nexium , for acid reflex ,any comments would be helpfull
.I have try so many,Ihave alot of pain in my chest & upper back,gas up & down , every day !
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Avatar_f_tn
Hello. I am not familiar with subglotic stenosis. Can you tell me more about it?  What exactly has the docs said causes your condition?  I agree about the Prilosec. I feel that the stomach should be producing acid as this is it's natural function.  I simply refuse to go on any more PPI's unless it is life or death.  When I came of Prilosec I experience HORRIBLE rebound burning which lasted for about 2-3 weeks.  It was awful, to the point that it brought me to tears.  Once I got it out of my system then things got better but still have the burning from the bile reflux.  I am considering trying an H2 blocker like Tagament.  These don't shut off your stomach acid like PPI's do, they just lessen the production of acid, which I feel is alot better than shutting it off.  Let me know more and hopefully we can share some ideas.
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Avatar_n_tn
I am a 40 year old male. I am overweight so I think If i could loose about 80 pounds I'm at 285 now that would help with most of my problems but here in lies the problem.

I am diabetic because of my weight. I have lost the weight before but I gained it back. When I lost the weight last time down to 205 my diabetes went away totally. I am only on pills right now. Diovan, Avandia, and Avapro. I just ran out of my Avapro and am going to have to wait a while before I can get it filled again because the prescriptions refills ran out and I can't make it to the doctor.

I have high blood pressure(Weight also)

I also have sleep apnea and Gerd to some degree. My symptoms are these:

Especially if I sit for a long period of time and have not eaten anything for several hours and I stand up and start to walk. I get a very weird feeling just above my stomach. Then feels like something raising up through my stomach and chest wanting to come out but it never makes it any further than my chest where it feels like it starts to squeeze. Actually more like expand than squeeze. Like it's going to blow up. and then I have to catch my breath because it catches. This really scares me until I start to burp really long and loud and then it releases and I start to calm down again. Rarely it happens again right after wards. Mostly it does not do it but one or 2 times a day when regular or 2 or 3 times a month some times when it's rare. I have had my heart checked and it's normal they say though all i've had done is an EKG. My blood pressure does go up at the time and I chalk that up to a mild case of panic attacks becuase of fear each time what if it's my heart. I have been waking up a lot of days lately hearing my heart beat in my left ear really loud but not fast just loud. I have fluid in my ears from time to time and my nose stays stopped up which makes it hard to use my cpap.

Anyhow the long and short of what I want to ask is this. My diet that I have just tried to restart list a  lot of free food that I used last time to help me feel full when I got hungry so I would not eat a lot of bad foods.

Radish, Cucumber, Onions, Peppers, Salsa, Salad etc.. and I eat a lot of cabbage which lowers my blood sugar.. but apparently now then all of this is bad for me because of acid reflux :( my question is simply:

No Salt
No Sugar
No Greens

what else is there left to eat? My diet last time was similar to this

Lunch was 1 sandwhich with whole wheat bread, tomato slice, lettuce, onion. 1 small baked potatoe, 1 cup green beans, 1 cup rice, 1 1/2 cup watermellon or 1 cup of cantelope and a couple bowls of salad

Supper was the same

Breakfast was a piece of toast with cream cheese and a slice of bacon

Yogurt in between meals and all the radish and cucumbers and salsa I could stand to stuff my stomach.

Thanks for  any suggestions.
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Avatar_m_tn
Hello everyone,
I too have had this problem of a rapid heart beat for over 10 years. I too believe this is caused by stomach problems. If anyone would like to continue the discussion or share stories please email me ***@****   Or if anyone has found some kind of real solution for this problem please post and email me.

No one seems to really be adding new info - let's start a network - we could always use the information to help us with our doctors visits.

thank you,
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Avatar_m_tn
@tfig - I believe its stomach issues that are causing my problems as well. Have you gotten your condition under control since you posted this? What support forums do you recommend?
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