I have been suffering symptoms of GERD for 5 years now, and after all the PPIs I have tried it has become clear that they are not strong or helpful enough to help me. I have tried many PPI brands, home remedies, lifestyle changes, you name it. No matter what I do, nothing seems to affect the intensity of my biggest symptom, exercise induced reflux. It is not acknowledged by any doctor or website, but my LES is so weak that any slight amount of exercise sends acid straight up my throat.
It used to just slow me down while I would play sports, eventually stopping me from competing in sports entirely. Now it has come to the point that even a staircase is enough to shoot acid up my throat, but I couldn't even imagine attempting to run again. A couple steps of running is enough to get choked by acid. The last time I exerted myself too hard, which was speed skating, the one sport that I was not used to getting heartburn, I had immense pains for days. I usually would only sprint for half a lap or maybe a whole lap, but instead I decided to sprint as fast as I could skate for a couple laps and that ended up being a bad idea. On the ice it didn't feel that bad because of the cool temperature, but as soon as I got off, I had a lot of trouble breathing, to the point that I had to breath deeply for at least an hour. My throat felt torched for the next 3 days, and I haven't really had any exercise since because I am too afraid of the pain (that was a couple months ago).
I have tried all of the little tricks on the days that I do exercise, but they literally have no effect. While I was still going to the ice rink for a while, I experimented a little with how eating or avoiding foods affected what came up. Most days I would assume not to eat anything earlier that day (not the previous hour or two, the previous day), and that would bring the typical symptoms I observe all the time since that's what I normally do. I also experimented skating at the same time adding different types and quantities of food: large meals, meals with a lot of meat, meals with tomatoes, all of them brought the exact same results. It did not matter how much I ate or what I ate because my LES valve was the problem. Even not taking my medicine one day brought the exact same results.
I am trying to pursue surgery, but I am not sure how long that will take since doctors have a habit of seeing me every other month, and I've had to see at least 50 specialists about this because no single doctor will take the liberty to explain what my problem is, I've had to figure it out on my own. I tell a doctor that my heartburn is caused by exercise, and they just plain dont believe me, which is ridiculous.
What can I do about the pains I get everyday from climbing the 3 story staircase to my dorm room in the only building without an elevator? I dont plan on moving to a new place because I would still need to be able to climb stairs elsewhere around campus (I am 18 and in college now). I've tried all the dietary and lifestyles changes I can, and I still constantly have acid in my mouth. Any suggestions would be nice.