My suggestion is to go to the ER if your symptoms are that terrible. It can definitely be anxiety related, however, you must first rule out all medical issues first. The ativan should help with the stress, but maybe something stronger will help until you get thoroughly checked out.
I had all of the same symptoms.
I thought it was my heart, as I had a dull constant ache which sometimes got so bad I couldn't breathe, and it did feel like the elephant. Pain was behind the sternum (breast bone) and also had epigastric flutter, which I thought was also my heart but turns out was probably esophogeal (sp?) spasms.
Had an endoscopy, esophogeal manommetry and PH monitoring, all showed simply 'mild gastritis' which sounds so innocent, but the pain is terrible. Also chronic belching, although not 'the other way', thank the lord. :)
Omprezole made absolutely no difference.
Also had the struggling to breathe at night, and waking during the night with a choking/gasping sensation. Also have excess saliva which doc said is normal when producing too much acid, even though acid doesn't seem to come up into the gullet. This is completely diffferent to my understanding of classic 'heartburn' which I have had on many occasions.
Im afraid I have found nothing to aleviate my symptoms, although taking plain bicarb of soda does work (in an emergency only as it tastes worse than the worst taste you can imagine lol.)
Hope you get to the bottom of it. Sounds gastric to me.
Just my opinion, and I am not a doctor....
Your gastric symptoms are all coming from your anxiety. Until you treat your anxiety and/or depression your stomach problems will not go away. The fact that the meds aren't helping is a sign. I hope that your symptoms soon go away and you get the help you need!
I have had the exact same feelings in my chest and worse at night and everything. I had an EKG and it was ok...one doctor said it was GERD and another said it is the rib that goes around to the back in the upper chest area that somehow got hurt. I do have anxiety and panic issues that have been acting up around the time of this and thought it was that but it seems different then usual. If you find out anything let me know please...thank you.
I get the exact symptoms. I started out with heart palps which led to anxiety! then came the GERD which was just confirmed by an endoscopy. I also had a stress echo which came back clear and wore a 30 day monitor which showed some PAC/PVC's but they were benign. Anxiety plays havoc on your mind and body. I have weeks where I feel great and then all of a sudden it just hits me like a ton of bricks. It is so very frustrating. I don't take any medication regularly for this as I dont like meds at all. But I will take my ranitidine for the reflux and Ativan as needed when my anxiety is bad. Hope you get some answers! Best of Luck!