It must go up or down
May 11, 2012 4:36 PM   Subscribe

I have this kind of choking thing that sometimes happens when I eat. It's not a Heimlich maneuver type thing. I can breathe.

I can feel it sort of hanging there like my valve that goes through my diaphragm is in spasm. If I drink water it will either go down or come up. I thought that was a coping strategy until I almost aspirated.

Coping strategies. I've become more aware of how I feel the night before. I take GasX, tums etc. I've been to the radiologist drank the liquid barium, ate a barium soaked cracker, and we saw nothing wrong.

Question - am I missing anything? - I take Benazepril HCl which I recently read can cause your windpipe to close down. I don't think that's the same thing.

PS -- I have the idea that exercise is helping me.
posted by notned to Health & Fitness (9 answers total) 6 users marked this as a favorite
Take small bites and concentrate on swallowing. Don't do other stuff--read, TV--while you eat.
posted by Carol Anne at 4:38 PM on May 11, 2012 [2 favorites]

I have this exact problem, but maybe worse, where I actually have the food get logged in that place. Smaller bites can help but not always sometimes when I eat and really concentrate it happens anyway and the only way to get past it is to have the "stuck" food come back the way it came, not vomit just regurgitate. I have tried cutting out foods of every kind and I find the more stressed I am the worse it is. I can't help with the question but any answers to this would be great.
posted by mrgroweler at 4:48 PM on May 11, 2012

This might be relevant.
posted by blaneyphoto at 4:52 PM on May 11, 2012

It sounds like it might be achalasia, which I struggled with for 3.5 years before anyone figured it out. I could drink water and sometimes it would help the food get down but most of the time it wouldn't.
posted by getawaysticks at 5:02 PM on May 11, 2012

Replying to myself because my link didn't even have the surgical solution I ended up using. I had a Heller Myotomy in 2010.
posted by getawaysticks at 5:07 PM on May 11, 2012

If the radiologist didn't rule out a hiatal hernia (I assume they did, but on the off-chance), that might be it? A family member of mine manages theirs by:
-sleeping on an incline (head higher than feet)
-avoiding foods that trigger heartburn (spicy food, etc) and ones that seem unique to causing symptoms for them (rice is a big villain).
posted by Snarl Furillo at 5:30 PM on May 11, 2012

A gastroenterologist is the type of specialist to see for this problem. We can all give you some guesses but this is not a problem to blow off.
posted by karlos at 5:45 PM on May 11, 2012

Seconding the gastroenterologist, difficulty swallowing is a symptom of acid reflux.
posted by PaulaSchultz at 8:28 PM on May 11, 2012

FWIW, I was misdiagnosed with GERD/Acid Reflux for a long time. But if you have a barium swallow test you will know right away if it's achalasia or a hiatal hernia (not sure how GERD/acid reflux comes up on a test).

Sleeping on an incline is also important for achalasia patients.
posted by getawaysticks at 1:53 PM on May 12, 2012

« Older Brewer seeks microbes   |   What is this weird little card? Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.