I'm so desperate and I'm hoping someone can shed some light to help me....I'm at a loss and scared that no one is taking me seriously - - - this is not all in my head - - - this pain is real and these symptoms are real.
I am a 37 year old male who recently got married (may 2007) and in August 2007 we found out we were having a baby. In the meantime, I was going to school and trying to maintain a 4.0 average, working on a house (that ended up falling through) and working 40 hours a week. I was very happy to get married and very excited about the baby - especially when i found out we were having a son.
In January 2008, I started experience the inablity to swallow. I swore my throat was closing up on me. I could not eat, swallow food and ended up having severe panic attacks because of how I was feeling. I went to the ER and they did the barium swallow....nothing was found. They did a CT scan and diagnosed a sinus infection and I was given antibiotics. They tested me for Lyme disease also. A week after the start of the antibiotics I was back in the ER for severe abdominal pain and throat closing feeling. They switched my antibiotics and I was still not really eating during this time...really only pudding, jello, chicken broth etc. The panic attacks were terrible because I swore my throat was closing up on me. I ended up in the ER a total of four times. One doctor told me about "globus hystericus" and told me everything was in my head and another doctor told me it was a form of reflux = reflux laryngitis (LPR). I went to a gastrologist who looked into my stomach and it was normal - no reflux found. I went to an ENT at a swallowing disorder clinic and she told me that I had a form of reflux called LPR. She looked at my swallowing and there was no obstruction and I was swallowing fine despite how I felt.
I've ended up in the hosptial at least six times since March 2008. I've been treated for dehydration etc. I've received a battery of tests and had sinus surgery to clear up the chronic sinusitis. I've had several CT scans, 2 barium swallow tests, a colonoscopy, several types of blood work including checking for vitamin deficiency and growing cultures, checked for parasites, I've had a Hida Scan done for my gall bladder function, I've had the gastrologist look at my stomach twice (and they only thing they found was a mild case of gastritis - they told me no reflux was found) and I'm going for another test where I swallow a little pill with a camera in it.
I have been given Nexium (was taking it twice a day but now only once), I've had several rounds of different antibiotics (both in and out of the hospital), large doses of anti-inflamatory drugs, anti-depressant drugs, anti-anxiety drugs, anti-nausea drugs, muscle relaxers, paragoric for my stomach, I've used a nettipot for my sinuses, mucinex, zyrtec, claritin. I've tried drinking aloe vera, taking licorice pills, taking probionics (sp?) for replacing good bacteria. YOu name it, I've tried it.
My symptoms since January are...
Constant mucus in my throat
Constant throat clearning (feel like I'm choking on it)
*originally I thought this was from the sinus infection but now the infection is gone and sinuses are clear...why is
it still there?
inability to eat, feel like throat is closing
NO appetite (I've losted 65 pounds since January 14th)
abdominal pain, nausea
bloated feeling as soon as I try to eat something
tightness behind my chest bone
Most recently I can add...
I have had good days where I thought I was on the road to recovery. Example, last week my doctor hospitalized me for dehydration and I had a good few days in the hospital. I came home on Saturday and was feeling very postive, I was eating and feeling pretty okay...not 100% but much better. Then I woke up Sunday morning, sick to my stomach and having abdominal pain again.
Everyone is telling me it is anxiety, but I'm not buying it. I really feel this way. I'm afraid I'm going to die because no one is taking me seriously. I cannot eat and if you cannot eat you die. I will agree that I'm depressed....I'm depressed because of how I feel and what is happening to me. I wasn't anxious or depressed before this happened to me. I woke up one day and couldn't swallow!
I don't know what other tests to take and I'm scared I'm going to die from whatever this is that they cannot find.
One cause which is important is eosinophilic esophagitis. Eosinophilic esophagitis is an inflammatory condition in which the wall of the esophagus becomes filled with large numbers of eosinophils.
It is believed that eosinophilic esophagitis is a type of esophagitis that is caused by allergy just like asthma, hay fever, allergic rhinitis, and atopic dermatitis even though the exact substance that is causing the allergy is not known.
Dysphagia almost always is evaluated with endoscopy (esophagogastroduodenoscopy or EGD) in order to determine its cause. In many patients with eosinophilic esophagitis, however, the esophagus looks normal or will show only minor abnormalities. Unless biopsies are taken of a normal-appearing esophagus, the diagnosis of eosinophilic esophagitis can be missed. A pathologist then can examine the biopsied tissue under the microscope to look for eosinophils.
The treatment of eosinophilic esophagitis is with gentle esophageal dilatation and medications like proton pump inhibitors, fluticasone propionate and elimination diets.
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