I was diagnosed with GERD about ten years ago and at that time had success with Nexium, however decided to change my diet (eliminating gluten, dairy, etc.) and was able to stop taking Nexium and felt great. I had a lot of life stresses the past few years and noticed symptoms coming back so I had a scope about a year ago and they determined I had gastritis but never treated it. Lately I have been burping a lot, having a hard time swallowing, burning down the center of my chest, shortness of breath, so I decided to try the Nexium OTC. I was on it for about a month and a half and symptoms continued to get worse. Shortness of breath becoming so bad that I actually have experienced hyperventalation several times. I have had a CT scan of head and neck, chest xray and 3 EKGs, all normal. For the past couple months when trying to fall asleep I have strong "jerking" sensations and feel that its difficult to breath, like a weight on my chest and have noticed my tongue is slightly swollen with teeth marks along the edges. I went last week to a new PCP (as my old one said I just need to take a xanax and stop worrying) and she prescribed Carafate 4x day (I have stopped Nexium OTC as things were only getting worse and I have become extremely constipated), I'm on day 3 and noticed swallowing is easier (bowel movements are very small and super skinny in appearance) , but the night "jerks" have continued. I sometimes even feel the"jerks" a little bit during the day when feeling very tired, like a head twitch sensation, followed by light headed feeling.
Am I having sleep apnea? Can all this be caused by GERD? Has anyone ever experienced sleep apnea symptoms and GERD together? Does one cause the other?
I would love some insight on which direction to go to stop this all, it is a nightmare! Thanks!