A natural way of dealing with Barretts esophagus?

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Hello all,quite recently I realised that my treatment for Barretts did not appear to be working very well I am taking 40mg Lansoprazole twice per day for the usual symptoms,reflux,distension,discomfort in throat etc.

I was diagnosed last June with Barretts,hiatus hernia and reflux after undergoing an endoscopy and despite taking the above medication still suffered the symptoms from time to time usually if I ate too much or ate the wrong things,for example tomatoes,cucumber,chocolate,spicy meals and so on.

Last week those symptoms returned with a vengeance and would not go away,so after scouring the Internet I decided to try a mixture of Diglycerinated liquorice,slippery elm,and a digestive enzyme bought from a local health shop and hey presto it seems to be working and for three days I have stopped taking Lansoprazole completely.

I hope that this new course continues to work as I am not sure about the long-term effects of taking PPI's it seems to be open to debate as to their efficacy over a long period of time.

Anyway for now I feel human again and will continue with my current treatment of 2-3 DGL capsules,a steeped brew twice per day of slippery elm powder(mix with milk and hot water) and one Digestive enzyme capsule at tea time.

However if necessary I may still take the odd Lansoprazole if this new method fails to continue to do its job.

By the way I am 63,male and currently awaiting a second knee replacement,medically retired in June last year from Royal Mail due to knee injury incurred on duty,I believe as a result of this inactivity (I have not worked since last June) this illness i.e Barretts et al appeared,the worry and inability to walk properly for 15 months has caused it to surface.

I would be interested to know if anyone else has had a similar experience and whether or not anyone is using natural remedies for treating this horrible affliction which according to one nurse in Orthopaedics when I had my preop for knee replacement 'is nothing much' I quipped back that try telling me that at two in the morning when I'm still awake feeling like I've eaten a five course meal and cannot get comfortable in bed,anyway food for thought,I will be glad to hear of anyone else's experiences on the subject of Barretts and on alternative treatment.

Regards Malcolm

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  • Posted

    Hi Malcolm

    I haven't tried any alternative therapies as, frankly, I have always been a little scared to in case it made things worse. I am on Omprezole (sp) and would love to come off them if there was anything else that was just as effective. I was interested in your Digestive Enzyme's as I would imagine that they would be a good thing to take anyway as a help to digest food especially on the last meal of the day. Have you found that it has helped your night time problems? I know exactly how you feel as I have had a number of very bad nights as well and also the re-regurgitation of food which is very uncomfortable indeed. Do you/have you had that as well?

    Presumably your Barrett's is checked every couple of years as mine is.

    I would love to know how you are getting on as I see it has been a few weeks since you posted this - not sure how many people come on here and post - not many by the looks of it.

    Poppy

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    • Posted

      Barnie,

      i have recently been diagnosed with Barretts. After years of suffering indigestion, went in for endosope and was diagnosed. Need to loose twetny twenty five pounds.

      Recently have had problems with breathing, pulmonologiist beliieves, I've actually aspirated food into my lungs that has calcified. Anyway long story short, he recommended propping my head up at night. For years I've heard this suggestion but ignored it. Well, I finally agreed, went to a foam store and bought a wedge of foam. Best thing I've done for my health in many years. My snoring has gone waay down, I'm breathing better, and hopefully in the long haul will be a saving grace for dealing with my breathing problems. 

      Pretty hard headed, thought I knew better but, I highly recommend it. Also am starting a regimine of digestive enzymes twice a day, and have felt an immediate difference in my overall gut, for lack of better words. 

      I highly recommend the foam.

      All the bestt

      D

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  • Posted

    Hi Barnie,nice to know there's others out there who use this site.Well I must admit both my stomach and throat are much better now,I sleep well and on my left side of course,I take one lansaprozole first thing in the morning,then one dgl tablet with my tea and a digestive enzyme especilly if i eat a big meal,which I now can do.

    I eat quite frugally up until tea time and always have a banana,weetabix and/or toast for lunch,have my tea and then take another lanaprozole around 21:00 hours then have cream crackers with a tiny amount of butter and cheese,and i drink loads of water till i sleep.

    I have regurgitated food but a while back nothing since really,but not to have the discomfort in the throat and stomach at night is a godsend.

    I occasionally take the Slipper Elm which apparently lines all the parts of the digestive system that are at risk from reflux,tastes kinda funny but hey it seems to work.

    I have actually stopped the lansoprazole on a sort of trial basis for a few days using just the natural remedies and suffered very little so there must be something in it.

    Just to finish off Barnie i had a duodenal ulcer in my twenties and had all sorts of treatment but finally a very helpful doctor asked me to try a medicine called CAVED-S which dispersed the ulcer in less tan a week plus all lthe bloatedness etc it is still available and i will continue to ask for it if my symptoms return with a vengeance,one of the ingredients of that tablet was DGL and something called frangula bark,see if you can get that sort of mix from your Doc or local health shop,I have seen CAVED-S mentioned on the internet so it is still out there.

    Hope this helps but just check if your meds may react with certain substances just in case,I wish you well and hope to hear from you again soon.

    Regards Malc

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  • Posted

    Hi there Malcolm

    Thanks for the reply and how wonderful to find relief from the natural route. Can you tell me where you got your Digestive Enzymes and Slippery Elm from as I would like to try that as a back-up to the meds. I am on one 40mg of Omeprazole at present which I take late afternoon as I feel it woould be stronger for the night time which is my worst time for anything. I am fine, generally, thru the day. I find that the one tablet, in the main, does keep everything at bay but I do get these odd nights when I must have eaten something wrong and then suffer for it. It is acid coming up and going into my lungs sometimes which then leads to a chesty cough the next day - this is what I would like to stops happening altogether if possible.

    How do you feel about the Barretts - how often are you checked? I am checked at every 2 years at the moment and things seem to be ok so far but I am always nervous just before a check . Have you heard about the HALO system whereby they can laser the Barretts away pretty much completely as I understand it. However, they wait until the Barretts reaches (if ever) a certain stage before doing it. Have you heard anything about this from your Consultant? I never get chance to speak to mine as I am always put off for the Endescopy and then just wake up in the recovery room with a nurse. So no chance to ask the consultant anything.

    It is good to share experiences and I look forward to where I can buy these enzymes and such. Many thanks.

    Barnie

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  • Posted

    Hi again Barnie,

    I get the natural meds from a health shop in Chorley,local to me,but they can be obtained online at Amazon or any of the many health shops on the Internet,probably cheaper as well.

    I am checked two yearly,like yourself,dread the tube going down,what an awful sensation,I've heard about Halo but not sure if it's available in the UK,I am very wary of the Barretts as both my mum and dad died from cancer of the esophagus,and well I must be very cautious.

    I find a lot of useful info on the forums on the Net from people who suffer as we do and all sorts of ways of dealing with it ,some people swear by a mix of honey and apple cider,I tried it and it seemed to lessen the symptoms but not as much as the current meds.

    It is an awful thing to live with and i am very careful about the amount of food I eat I am so ravenous at times but have to control the amount I eat,as I do not want to start things off again,obviously I have cut down on fatty foods to some degree,curries,cheese,cucumber,tomatoes and any acidic fruit.

    Another thing I do is to chew gum whilst in bed it again it seems to aid my throat,my reflux is not bad at all now nor the feeling like you've eaten a five course meal after tea,maybe it's psychological some of this but boy am I glad that there is an improvement.

    Takes a couple of days or more before these meds kick in so be patient,good luck with the search for these meds,but it has to be a good health shop,not Tesco's or supermarkets,check yellow pages if you don't fancy the internet.

    I wish you well and keep in touch,we can update each other with our progress.

    Regards Malc.

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  • Posted

    Thanks Malcolm, I will try H&B in the High st.

    Just to let you know that the HALO system has been passed by NICE and is available here now. As I said previously, though, not until it gets to a more severe stage but it is wonderful news as it has a very high success rate. So, try not to worry too much as at least there is some treatment for it now and we cannot do anymore than we are doing to care for ourselves.

    I have looked for forums for this but have never found any?

    I find eating a couple of spoonfuls of plain probiotic yoghurt ( a good quality one) both after an attack of acid and as a preventative.

    Thanks for your input and help

    All the best

    Barnie

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  • Posted

    Dear Barnie,

    There are a few forums I have found mainly Yankee,but helpful neveretheless,yes probiotic yoghurts are a help,trouble is I can't stop at one,nice to know Halo is available on yon shores,let's hope if it comes to it then we can get the treatment.it's once dyspasia worsens when the real trouble starts,let's hope it doesn't come to that for all of us sufferers.

    I bid you well and good luck in your search.

    Regards Malc.

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  • Posted

    Hi Malcolm

    I have not tried natural methods but found quickly that sleeping with the head of the bed lifted a few inches, helped keep what was supposed to stay down in my stomach stay down, also for me things got a lot better, when I moved away from the very soft water where I used to live. Over the fifteen or more years of it, things seem settled now, only occasionally having to double up the daily dose.

    Best regards

    Phil.

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  • Posted

    Hi Phil,

    Yes I sleep with raised bed and also lie leftways on sleeping,as I say I have not been too bad recently in fact the last few days have been spent in hospital for knee replacement,and I did expect problems with pain-killers and their effects on my stomach but so far so good I hope a combination of medicines and remedies will keep away the worst of it all,what meds are you on Phil?

    Regards Malc

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    • Posted

      hello malcom you should try the diet ive been on its worked fine ,i suffed for years clearing my throat. i havent done that now since i started my diet, thats one of the best results
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  • Posted

    Hi Phil and Malc

    I was diagnosed with Barretts (w/ severe dysplasia) a few months ago. Every two months I go in for a scoping and biopsies. Part of my problem has been a refusal on my part to make the drastic change in m diet that I needed to, until now. I've never regurgitated so much in my life as in the past 6-7 months.

    Now, with the medicines and oats, rice, plain yoghurt, bread, etc ... hopefully this will control the "refusal" of the foods I had been eating. Now, for some reason I find that my lungs seems to be shutting down?? I am very active physically and am a gym rat. But my ability to do cardio is diminished severely.

    I am uncertain why this is happening, and if it is even related to the Barretts?? Any thoughts???

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  • Posted

    Hi Thomas,

    First of all my sympathies and a well done for changing your diet (never easy),wow this is a tough one really,firstly are you sleeping better as a result of the diet change and hopefully a downturn in the number of reflux attacks you have during the night?

    The reason I ask is because I appear since my diet change to have re-inherited my 'sleep apnoea' that I last had seriously years ago,which left me listless and feeling like I had never slept despite having done so. This thing,like Barrett's can really harm you without treatment,mine was rediscovered last week whilst in hospital getting over my knee replacement,I will now have to undergo testing again.

    Suggest you read up on it,compare symptoms and see if you get a match! If not I'll have a think about it and come back to you if this is no help.

    Regards Malcolm

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  • Posted

    Hi Graythomas

    I have never heard of Barretts interfering with your lungs from anything that I have read or learnt about the condition. I have heard that long time reflux (especially if you have it going into your lungs) may set off Asthma so maybe that would be something that you could mention to your doctor and may explain why your lungs are not functioning as they normally would.

    Sorry to hear about you having the severe dysplasia diagnosis - that must be a real nuisance having to have the camera down every couple of months. The good news, though, is that you are being carefully monitored. I was wondering if the doctors have mentioned the HALO system to you - this is where they use ablation to burn away the Barretts with a special machine. It has a very high success rate. It has been in use in America for some years and it is now in the UK and has been rolled out in several hospitals for use. Have they booked you in for this type of treatment at all? If not, then it would be worth asking about it and why you have not been put forward for treatment.

    Hope this has been of some help and would love to know if you have been offered the HALO.

    Good Luck

    Barnie

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  • Posted

    Hi Barnie,

    The Dr. here has not mentioned the HALO system to me yet. I will have to google it and read some on what it is! Thank you for mentioning it!!

    Hmm .. interesting on asthma. I have had reflux for close to a decade now... many years it went untreated. I seem to be having what feels like asthma ... I love working out and exercisng .. and it kills me not to be able to do so .. due to my lungs shutting down so quickly at the onset of any .. even just walking.

    I took my wife and grandson to the zoo this past weekend and I felt like a 90 y/o! My lungs just would not get any air. I almost blacked out like 3-4 times. I had to sit and wait for the others . It stinks.

    I will definitely talk to Dr next visit. Thank you for your insights!!!!!

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  • Posted

    Hi Malcom!

    How long have you struggled with reflux???? The sleep apnea (sp?) ... I also have it. When my diet is bad it seems to worsen. But if I eat clean and dont eat 3-4 hrs before bed time .. then it isnt to bad. I take GABA to assist my sleeping ... often my wife wakes me and tells me I had stopped breathing! lol ... kinda scary eh???

    What does/do your recent testings consist of??????

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