24/7 Extreme Globus for over a year - My story and resolution

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This is going to be a bit of a novel , but I promised myself if I ever found even the slightest, smallest form of relief I would re-visit this website and share my experiences with all of you in the hopes that maybe this can stop or help relieve someone else's agony.

Let me start by saying , I'm no stranger to suffering. I've had broken bones and hearts, invasive surgeries, tattoos you get the idea. I'm also not the type of person to break easily or express discomfort easily. Globus sensation, for as long and as severe as I experienced is easily the most difficult and draining thing i've ever had to endure. I did not find a cure that worked for me in this forum, but I did find a lot of comfort knowing there is somebody out there who understands, and that I wasnt alone even though it seemed so and I just wanted to say thank you so much for that.

I'll try to spare as many obsolete details as possible and keep the timeline as clean as I can, please bear with me also as not being a gifted writer.

In august , 2019 I first experienced the sensation I would later learn identified as Globus , Or Globus Sensation. I woke up feeling a tightness in my throat, I described it to my boss as being difficult to breath. This went on for about 2 or 3 days and vanished. I didnt think much of it , In fact I'm pretty sure I chalked it up to bad air quality due to it being fire season where I live.

Before you read this , I never had a history of breathing or heart problems anxiety, or ANY problems related to any of those things my entire life. I was laying down in my bed to fall asleep on march 31st 2020 and I kept experiencing this weird feeling where it felt like my heart would flutter , or race , and I felt like when I exhaled periodically it was really difficult to inhale (or at least it felt like it was) accompanied by a very doomy feeling. This went on for a few hours and eventually it got to a point where it started to concern me enough to wake up my fiance and ask her if I should see a doctor. We both convinced each other that it could be serious, especially with my heart fluttering ( or fluttering sensation). My emergency room visit was inconclusive. They ran an EKG and heart related blood work, monitored both my heart and oxygen levels for over 4 hours and everything came back completely normal. This continued on for several nights afterwards. I started monitoring my own heart rate with a fit bit, even at night when laying down and experiencing this. According to the fitbit , even when I felt like my heart was racing , it wasnt. On June 3rd 2020 I started to develop a severe pain in my chest on the left side, underneath or what felt like behind my left nipple, it felt like I might be having severe heartburn or something similar. It felt like a very sharp stabbing , throbbing almost burning pain right around where my heart is. So I went back to the emergency room and they did some blood work and another EKG, results were inconclusive yet again and everything appeared to be normal. The pain seemed to be less when I was sitting or standing, but still present. It seemed to be worse when lying down. By this point I had missed several days of work due to not being able to sleep literally at all. Frustrated and growing increasingly concerned, I went to another emergency room in the next city over on June 8th 2020 , to get a CT scan still having severe chest pain in the same area, I also noted that it felt like it was radiating to my back side and below my rib cage, and also in my upper abdomen but still in a very concentrated area. The CT scan revealed slight constipation, but nothing more. They prescribed me laxatives and sent me on my way, after the medicine ran, I had slight releif from the abdominal pain, but the "heart" area pain still persisted.

During all of this time I was still visiting my primary doctor off and on , he prescribed me Pantoprazole for suspected GERD or heartburn and Lorazepam for suspected anxiety, I took the pantoprazole for several months every day and I was becoming heavily drained by not sleeping every night from the constant severe pain and unknown cause. My symptoms remained identical on the Pantoprazole, The Lorazepam didn't really seem to have much of an effect at all and I began to develop a sensation of my throat feeling small, or like something was stuck inside of it, like wearing a really really over tight turtle neck, or being held in choke, however the sensation mysteriously vanished, and returned again time and time again with no obvious triggers or solutions . I visited my primary doctor and he referred me for an endoscopy.

On June 29th 2020, In heavy desperation for any answer , relief and sleep I went to the hospital in Boise and requested another CT scan of my chest and heart, and inquired about any other possible tests or possible causes. The CT scan came back with normal results again.

On July 13th 2020 I conversed with my primary care doctor with an updated list of my symptoms, I still felt the pain but it wasn't a constant like it was before, I only got the pain occasionally at this point , but the turtle neck choking sensation was worsening, and no longer coming and going, just constant. On July 23rd I had the endoscopy done. The results were also normal, the doctor informed me she took a small biopsy and prescribed me Omeprazole. By this point I no longer felt the burning stabbing pain in my chest. After the endoscopy I stopped taking Pantoprazole and took the Omeprazole from July 23rd up until August 26th 2020 , under instruction from my doctor I stopped the medication due to a lack of results, I went back to my primary doctor on August 31st 2020 and explained my symptoms, he prescribed me Buspirone for suspected anxiety.

The Buspar did seem to provide a very temporary relief, I still am unsure if it was actually effective , or if my brain tricked me into thinking that but it also made me feel ill and just down drugged to the point where I didn't feel comfortable operating a vehicle. I continued taking the Buspar daily for a few weeks until I was convinced it wasn't helping at all. Under instruction from my doctor I stopped taking the Buspar. No change in condition. By this point I was starting to lose hope, and the will to continue on and found little to no point in recording dates and times, as this information proved to be pointless so far. I visited my primary care doctor yet again and he prescribed me Zoloft. I took the Zoloft until about October and under instructions from my doctor weaned off the Zoloft due to a lack of results and prescribed me Lexapro. By this point my doctor was convinced that the Globus sensation was due to an underlying anxiety disorder, and nothing more, and I thought that this was absolutely insane because I'm not an anxious person, and never had anxiety problems before, I would never have even entertained this thought before. Desperate and confused I took the Lexapro for several months, but the Globus persisted. 24/7 , extremely tight Globus. By mid march I was weaned off of Lexapro due to a lack of results.My doctor referred me back to the endoscopy doctor. I was prescribed hydroxyzine I took this for months to no avail, she then prescribed me amitriptyline on a dose that tapered up to from 10 to 50mg daily eventually to 100mg daily for about 2 months , no results. By this time I had really started to loose all hope and had began to entertain thoughts of suicide regularly, and was loosing my will to live. The Globus sensation was so extreme, it was absolute pure agony, I was in a constant state of extreme discomfort for endless months and months and months and was finding it impossible to find enjoyment out of anything in my life. Things that I once loved, just became things, talking became exhausting and just waking up knowing that I had to live with this another day. I eventually ended up in a very reclusive and depressive state, alienating every person in my life, nobody around me understood or took it seriously at all , including many medical professionals I encountered, In fact the ear nose and throat doctor told me that I needed to learn how to live with it. I never experienced real depression before this.

My primary healthcare doctor retired shortly after I stopped taking the amitripyline , forcing me to find a new primary doctor, not knowing where to go I continue to turn to the doctor at the digestive clinic, she reccomends several other primary care physicians , and several other types of doctors including an internal medicine specialist and an ear nose and throat specialist , and a vocal cord specialist, I did so many tests , hormone tests, blood tests, urine and stool tests, a barium swallow test, an ultrasound and CT on my thyroid, and neck all with normal results. I frantically search all corners of the internet, I even tried other types of odd remedies like gargling hot salt water for 20 minutes, gargling cold salt water for 20 minutes or only eating cold food , only eating hot foods , not eating spicy foods any sort of diet modification you can think of. Massage therapy , you name it I've tried every remedy you could think of. I really start to spiral. Convinced I will never find a solution for this I locate a new doctor, and make an appointment. When he walks into the room, immediately I am not impressed, he looks like he is my age, or possibly younger. I think to myself great, another doctor who is going to listen to me talk, but not hear my voice, this isn't the doctor, this isn't THE GUY. This guy isn't going to be able to help me, I'm wasting my own time. Why did I even come here? I've seen so many doctors. Against my better judgement, I give him the entire story. He asks me a few brief questions and then asks me if I've tried or considered a medication called Cyclobenzaprine. Well by now you know I haven't. Reluctantly I pick up the prescription, read the instructions and consume my first dose.

Wow.

I don't remember exactly how long after the first dose of Cyclobenzaprine, but it wasn't long, I felt a noticeable (not much seriously) but the smallest most miniscule noticeable difference THAT night before I went to sleep. I was so greatful I cried , The Globus is still terrible but I felt a change. 3 days into the medication I'm really starting to notice a change. 10 Days into the medication and WOW what a difference , the sensation is cut in half by this time. Now at approx. 40 days into the medication and my Globus has completely evaporated.

Fast forward to today, 9/10/21 and I am completely symptom free, occasionally I will still feel the Globus sensation EVER so slightly, but it never lingers and goes away within minutes.

I would never wish this on another person, and I express my deepest sympathy for anybody who has struggled with this in any capacity.

Thank you for reading my long story. I wish you all the best. I leave this here in hopes that it will help anybody.

B

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9 Replies

  • Edited

    Thanks for posting this. Nice to hear that you found a cure.

    I believe that a muscle relaxant would help me too but I haven't tried because I won't get a prescription for it. My symptoms are not as severe and it would be hard to get a prescription from a doctor. I once suggested it but my doctor was against the idea.

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    • Posted

      We all went through dozens of doctors. Do the same, be careful, find one who will be willing to read our case studies.

      The medical knowledge is just not there yet. We must all help change that. Hey Globus, we are coming for ya.

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  • Edited

    oh my goodness i have every single syptom you have expressed except for how it started mine acually came out one night last year September 3rd at 9:30pm. i heard a huge pop come from my upper chest lower neck throat area ....excactly after that i felt breathless it was the worst feeling to deal with for a year and still. i never took the medicine because i was afriad of my small breathing i did have , get shorter beacasue of medicinces drowsy affect as a relaxant. but wow man yes it is a struggle and its nice to know that there Are other people who experience this I have terrible breathlessness very tight neck and throat and sometimes stomach and its hard for me to inhale through my nose. Everybody take me as a joke they think it can’t be a big deal since all my test came back normal.and im sitting there like i can not breath please help me! ..... In the past year I have went to the emergency room over 40 times it is very very very scary so I completely understand all your symptoms I went through the same thing and I’m still going through it all though day with a grain of salt it gets better. I see that you took in some kind of medicine from your doctor and I’m going to ask my doctor about the medicine that actually did end up working for you did you also get low belly pain? Also It Makes me think that it is going to take my life and times it’s very debilitating . I’m glad that you are able to have some relief it must feel amazing. blessings to you and congradulations!

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  • Edited

    Hello, just read your story.. I have been suffering with Globus for 13 months.. Seen many Doctors with different treatments (acid reflux, anxiety, etc. etc)

    had endoscopy, esophagus dilation. on and on). Nothing helps. Going to speak to my doctor about the muscle relaxer you are/were taking.. Thanks...p.s. are you still on the medication..? does it make you drowsy?

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  • Edited

    IMPORTANT! THIS HELPED ME AS WELL!

    Executive summary:

    The solution suggested by the author Brightsyde worked for me. I used different drug with different substance, but similar in effects. Don't act without consulting a good doctor but DO CHECK this solution if you suffer from similar symptoms of Globus (object/feather/hair in throat).

    Full post:

    1. I need to start with sending my deepest thanks to Brightsyde for his post. I found it while searching the internet for help on another sleepless night. It was a stepping stone for solving my problem with Globus as well. What he did, is: he used the Internet the right way, the way which can make the world a better place. He shared true and detailed information on a solution of a rare problem, to make it accessible on every corner of the world. I found it on another end of the globe. Thank you. Those words are not enough. I will try to contact you directly, I'd love to at least buy you a dinner at your favourite restaurant. And I promise to you and the world to dedicate substantial amount of time to make knowledge about this still little known approach to dealing with Globus popular among the medical society. Well, no one deserves to go through what we had to endure.
    2. After I read Brightsyde's story I was mostly devastated, as I suffered from Globus for barely 1,5 month and it was already killing me, so his story of a year+ long struggle looked terrifying.
    3. My symptoms: feeling of a hair, a feather or an object deep in throat (so real, you are certain that there has to be an object there). This is not a pain, just an endless feeling, which for some reason strongly influences your psyche. Like this thought, that sth obstructs your throat and can bring hazard to your life gets a priority in brain.
    4. Coexisting symptoms:

      Chronic laryngitis (inflammation of larynx) proven with endoscopic camera 3 times, dry cough. Those are possibly the underlying causes which lead to my Globus or helped for it to develop. I am still fighting these problems. They are a nuisance but, NOTHING compared to the Globus.

    5. I live in Warsaw, capital of Poland, with access to pretty much best doctors around, with modern equipment. I wasn't limited with finances /insurance or in any other way in my access to professional help.
    6. Similarly to Brightsyde, once my Globus appeared, I visited and consulted a long list of doctors, laryngologists, gastroenterologist and was under constant support of a psychologist (as definitely psyche plays one of the major roles here).
    7. I took various medications including steroids in various forms for inflammation, omeprazole for reflux, anti-allergy drugs and more.
    8. Three times I had an endoscopy with a camera down my throat to see that there is really nothing there and the larynx inflammation isn't all that bad.
    9. Important thing to stress at this point is that similarly to Brightsyde, medical personnel didn't take my symptoms completely seriously. This condition is known for long as "Globus Hystericus" and in fact the "hysteria" part is not treated seriously.

      In the meantime the doctors tried to cure the underlying condition (again, similar medications to Brightsyde) - which is good and important, but does not deal with the Globus feeling itself.

    10. The regular psychotherapy helped me stay sane and function in life during this time. I need to stress this: get a good shrink if you suffer like we did. There are good universal methods that can be trained, on how to sustain prolonged suffering and anxiety. This made it possible for me to keep an ~80% of normal efficiency at work and home life, which is not bad given the sleepless nights. Don't hesitate one day and get a good psychologist. Important: I didn't get to a point of taking any antidepressants, it is up to you and your doctors.
    11. Eventually, when the Globus feeling increased, I started to research the topic myself. In fact this was double hard, as my psyche was getting even worse while reading all the terrible case studies of people suffering around the world and the symptoms I experience myself. I also read worthless marketing materials from pharmaceutical companies. I read Chinese research papers (they have some interesting findings), everything, you name it. Eventually I also read this post by Brightsyde. I didn't treat it 100% seriously, only as one idea out of many.
    12. At this point I believed my condition was most likely acid reflux/ GERD related (It still might be). An acid burn sounds reasonable, right? During a long, multi hour analysis with a gastroenterologist, we decided that although reflux can be a component here, some pieces are missing and some don't add up. The camera recording from inside my throat didn't show a situation bad enough to explain this unbearable globus feeling. (Further examination is required to confirm) the reflux.
    13. I finally consulted another very good clinical laryngologist. She very quickly mentioned: THIS MIGHT BE A PROLONGED SPASM OF THE ESOPHAGEAL SPHINCTER (warning: my translation might be inaccurate). This reminded me of Brightsyde's post. We both confirmed that the exact location of the Globus feeling is EXACTLY where this muscle exists. I quickly asked the doctor about any experience with similar approach to the one Brightsyde used. This approach is not yet used in Poland (or popularly known), but it made sense to us and I was very eager to test it. The medication and this substance which Brightsyde used is NOT available in Poland and possibly not in Europe. (This fact shows, that this substance must be used with caution!)
    14. In consultation with two further doctors (look how careful we were!) we chose another medication with similar purpose, to make an experiment. I will not mention the name of the medication/substance. Please pursue this direction with a doctor who prescribes such muscle relaxing medications on a daily basis (for other conditions).
    15. I took half a pill. Just half of a small pill. Within 1 hour, the globus feeling started to decrease. Within 2 hours, it was gone. Gone. Just like that. I felt just like Brightsyde. I wanted to cry. This felt just too good to be true.
    16. ONCE AGAIN: The medication used for relaxing the acute spasms of muscles worked on relaxing the spasm of the esophageal sphincter and in result removed the globus feeling. The pain and numbness in my inflamed larynx remains, but this is not unbearable anymore.
    17. This is not the end. I continue to search for the underlying causes of problems with my larynx and I continue my psychotherapy. I understand the Globus was just an unlucky side-effect of underlying health issues, which was particularly unbearable.
    18. MOST IMPORTANT: I will also continue to consult and examine the solution we discuss above up to the point of getting it clinically approved and popularised among the doctors. I am bloody serious. I went through hell. Brightsyde went through hell. Probably many of you go through such hell. It is HIGH TIME we put an end to this.
    19. And let's remember the Internet was not made for porn and sharing pictures of what sb had for dinner. Lets promote using it, just like Brightsyde did.

    If you suffer from Globus: write your story here. You are not alone. We've been there. We understand your suffering. Let's fight this together!

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  • Edited

    Hi maciejmalisz, Brightsyde and everyone else in this thread!

    In 2 weeks, by the 14th of November, it will be 1 year... The worst year of my life, by far. This is ruining my life in every way. And I have 3 kids, two of them really young (2 years), twins. It would make all the difference if they had their dad with health, which is not the case at all. And I seriously doubt I can keep living like this for much longer.

    I'm so sad, anxious and depressed. I just wish that what I have is globus. Because if it isn't globus, then I may be doomed to live with it for the rest of my days, as it could be some sort of permanent damage from which I will obviously never recover. At least the symptoms haven't changed, they are basically the same as in the first months.

    How can I be sure that it is globus? Any advice?

    maciejmalisz, I understand your happiness and relief. I also know that you might be right and some cases of globus might be solved with the treatment that you and Brightsyde went through with success. But I also think (from what I have been reading) that not all globus have the same origin. If what is causing the globus is muscle tension, as in the upper esophageal sphincter, then a treatment with a muscular relaxant makes all the sense.

    I'm not going to make you read my story, but if any of you want to know about it, here's the link: https://patient.info/forums/discuss/is-this-globus-please-help-me-find-out--771650

    As I said, I can only hope that it is globus or some sort of psychosomatic symptom. Because if it is a damage to the epiglottis cartilage, as an ENT theorised that it can be, it would be the end of me. I would apply for euthanasia as soon as it gets approved where I live, which seems that it's going to be very soon. And I had a good life, that's what's keeping me with strength.

    I'm taking antidepressives, 30mg of mirtazapine per day now. I never had to take any meds of this type before. This feeling in my throat is a nightmare, it's like hell on earth. But in my case it does not feel like a muscle tension. It's hard to explain, but it's more like as if there was something stuck in the left side of my throat and when I swallow it's like if my throat bended. Also, something seems to be touching the back of my throat and kind of scratches it.

    If one day I get rid of this, I will be the happiest person in the world. But I'm so afraid that day will never come... 😦

    Thanks for telling us about your experiences and for all the advice!

    -

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  • Edited

    i also suffer from globus sensation and it has been going in for about 10 years now some times it is worse than other times but i long for this sensastion to be gone.

    iam wondering if you are still taking the cyclobenzaprine? did you experience any severe side effects?

    thank you so much for sharing your story and im so happy to hear something worked . congratulation

    sincerly

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