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Anthony Bray, MD
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Category: Medical
Satisfied Customers: 8876
Experience:  14 years experience in the field of Family Practice
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Looking for some information and GERD. Have a few questions

Resolved Question:

Looking for some information and GERD. Have a few questions about symptoms.
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Medical
Expert:  Anthony Bray, MD replied 2 years ago.

Anthony Bray, MD : Hello!
Anthony Bray, MD : Most typical symptoms of GERD would be the typical feeling of heartburn...
Anthony Bray, MD : a burning sensation coming into the esophagus and felt in the chest...
Anthony Bray, MD : you might experience brackish taste in the back of the throat...
Anthony Bray, MD : Discomfort may be felt in epigastric area and up to lower chest commonly...
Anthony Bray, MD : you might experience discomfort with swallowing hot drinks or acidic drinks such as orange juice...
Anthony Bray, MD : if the problem bothers you then taking a medicine to lower the acidity of the stomach fluid may help reduce symptoms and irritation if the esophagus --- over the counter Prilosec or Prevacid may be helpful...

I get the sour taste in my mouth, and definitely lots of burping. Initially when diagnosed I was experiencing the sensation of something being stuck in my throat. I do not really have that anymore, however I'm experiencing a couple of other things. Is it normal for some of the symptoms to change over time?

Anthony Bray, MD : Reflux precautions include waiting 1.5 hours after you eat before you lie down...
Anthony Bray, MD : elevating the head of the bed with blocks 4 to 6 inches under the bedposts helps to keep trunk at incline and reduces tendency for reflux when you lie down...
Anthony Bray, MD : Yes symptoms may change over time...

I'm currently noticing pain about my chest and upper back. Not a sharp pain, more of a dull discomfort. I have also noticed a feeling of fullness/soreness about my jaw and ears.

Anthony Bray, MD : sour taste in the mouth is common...
Anthony Bray, MD : Those could be related-- yes--- pain from esophagus can radiate to chest/ back / jaw...

i'm just trying to figure out if the chest and upper back pain are from reflux, muscle tension, nerve pain, or otherwise. I suppose they could be muscular, from tension? I believe nerve pain would be sharper?

Anthony Bray, MD : these distribution areas do correspond with heart related angina as well which is concerning and frequent dilemma in evaluating this problem...

I asked my doctor about heart issues, and he mentioned that with angina, or cardiac problems, the pain is most often worse upon exertion.

Anthony Bray, MD : That is true... Sometimes helpful to use GI cocktail --- Mylanta plus viscous lidocaine --- if this relieves pain then it establishes the cause to esophagus...

He also stated that alongside pain, cardiac issues also usually cause one to be short of breath?

Anthony Bray, MD : often we do have to be careful in evalautimh this problem!

my pain is not worse upon exertion, and I go running several times a week - do not have a problem with being out of breath.

Anthony Bray, MD : if certain foods trigger symptoms too then that is helpful clue...
Anthony Bray, MD : the bad taste in mouth would NOT be from other source

i find too that the pain about the chest and back are often times positional, which my doctor stated would indicate a muscular issue. is that true?

Anthony Bray, MD : yes positional changes in pain would more suggest musculoskeletal origin but bending over at waist can trigger reflux too...

i suppose that what i'm experiencing could be a combination of muscular tension, reflux, and probably anxiety.

Anthony Bray, MD : the character of pain with change may indicate separate problem such as pain from spine for example ... Sharp shooting quality would more suggest nerve compression...

what about some sort of cancer? my friend who has lymphoma had chest pain. however, hers was severe/sharp, and she was also very out of breath.

Anthony Bray, MD : yes -- that sounds very likely--- muscle pains usually more of ache and may relate to work/ position/ etc...
Anthony Bray, MD : Well there would seem no reason to jump to suspicion of lymphoma ... Reflux and muscle aches are very common ... Lymphoma not that common at all...

i usually jump to the worst case scenario.

Anthony Bray, MD : abnormal fatigue, fever, chills, enlarged lymph nodes would be more symptoms to watch for there...

i do not believe i have those things, although i really don't know what enlarged lymph nodes would either feel or look like.

Anthony Bray, MD : There is your anxiety factor jumping in! That is human nature I think to fear the worst!!
Anthony Bray, MD : Happily it is not usually the worst case scenario at all!

i cannot feel any lumps in the usual suspect areas (neck, armpits, groin).

Anthony Bray, MD : You can feel lymph nodes in your neck and sometimes in armpit areas...
Anthony Bray, MD : large and hard like a small marble would be what to worry about

i wouldn't have to go digging around to find them?

Anthony Bray, MD : That is good... If you can't feel them at all then they are not enlarged...
Anthony Bray, MD : No, not really they are very superficial-- close to the skin-- they tend to hurt and feel sore when enlarged....

ok. because i really don't want to have something awful, like cancer! i have always been scared of it.


i should mention, getting back to the reflux, that i drink coffee every day, and have been drinking wine consistently lately too (i love red wine in the fall). could these things be causing irritation?

Anthony Bray, MD : well you have nothing to suggest cancer at this time! Just routine problems!
Anthony Bray, MD : most of us will have reflux to some extent for example... This is very common problem...
Anthony Bray, MD : Yes coffee and alcoholic drinks may irritate the problem... I would try backing off until you are free of symptoms for a few weeks...
Anthony Bray, MD : watch out too for anti- inflammatory meds( aspirin/Aleve/ Advil) Tylenol is OK...
Anthony Bray, MD : watch out for hot spicy and acidic foods for a while too....
Anthony Bray, MD : onions,peppers, tomatoes, citrus fruits be very moderate in intake over next few weeks...

okay, thanks so much for your help.

Anthony Bray, MD : You are very welcome!
Anthony Bray, MD : let me know if you have further questions!
Anthony Bray, MD : Best regards,
Anthony Bray, MD : Anthony Bray MD
Anthony Bray, MD, Doctor
Category: Medical
Satisfied Customers: 8876
Experience: 14 years experience in the field of Family Practice
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