Help me make this suck less, part II
April 17, 2012 3:28 PM Subscribe
Just diagnosed with GERD, possible ulcer following 5 weeks of high-dose antibiotics for sinus issues. Seeking recs for anything that might help my beleaguered digestive system, information on getting tested for H. pylori. Gross details and looong narrative await within.
posted by terrierhead to health & fitness (10 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I had three weeks of Augmentin back in March, then sinus surgery, followed by another week of Augmentin. The day of my last Augmentin tablet, I got a 9-hour sinus bleed that lead me to the ER, sinus packing and another week of Augmentin, plus several days on antiemetic medication to help me handle having all the blood that I swallowed during the sinus bleed.
I had my first experience with severe heartburn before the surgery, during my the first round of antibiotics. I gobbled Tums, had some peppermint tea, soldiered through it and was better the next day.
Then the weekend before last, I got an even worse case of heartburn seemingly out of the blue. Tums didn't do much this time, and I didn't get better so off to the worksite clinic I went. They told me I have reflux and ordered OTC Prilosec. Took it for several days, no luck.
At my doctor's office yesterday, the nurse practioner gave me some Nexium tablets and told me about dietary restrictions, most of which I'd already found on AskMeFi and was following. Unfortunately, I got an anxiety attack, some hives and was grinding my teeth without realizing it while on the Nexium, so we're back to the Prilosec as of today.
I've been communicating with my doctor through e-mail and she ordered me to increase the Prilosec to two tabs/day and to add in regular Tums and Maalox for the next few days. I asked about getting tested for H. pylori, but she said that I have to fail three months therapy with the antacid/Prilosec combo to have the testing done. This makes very little sense to me. I've had "ulcers" in the past - no testing done, treatment with antacids, and always have had the problem return. I've asked for a GI referral but haven't gotten that, either.
Today I woke up, sat up in bed and had acid stuff come all the way up my throat, and have a killer sinus headache that I think might be connected. The reflux happens even when I'm sitting completely upright or standing up, which I didn't think was supposed to happen. I've lost nine pounds in the past two weeks, all of it unintentional. Are there magic words that I'm not using to get extra help from my doctor?
The whole sudden GERD after antibiotics thing seems like it might be a clue, too. However, my googling hasn't revealed anyone else who's had this happen. Am I alone in this?
I'm eating yogurt daily and am interested in adding probiotic suppliments. I've read in other questions about dietary enzymes suppliments but am not sure what to look for. Any advice will be sincerely appreciated.
As of now, I'm on the stomach medication merry-go-round, am following the dietary restrictions and am adding in the Maalox and Tums at regular intervals. Tonight I'm propping the head of the bed up rather than trying the wedge again, since I slipped down the wedge last night. I'm considering dropping my nightly pre-bedtime bath in favor of a shower as showers are more vertical, but I'll still have to bend to shave my legs, and every time I do bend, acid comes up my throat. I'm also considering dropping my ab workout for the time being, which makes me feel kind of sad since those exercises have been helping me out in other ways.
I'm under some stress that I can't do much about - business trip starts tomorrow, series of presentations to be done next week - which can't be helping. Working 11-hour days isn't doing me any favors, either, but again there's not a lot I can do about it right now. I can't even have a nice beer to take the edge off. Actually I could, but it probably wouldn't be worth it.
What might I be missing? Anything else that might help?