Does this sound like achalsaia?

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I have been having some Gi issues /swallowing difficulties for a while now. One of my general practisioners recommended I look into achalaisa as a possible diagnosis. Just wondering if anyone with achalaisa would take a peek at my symptoms to see if this diagnosis fits.(Note I do have an upcoming Gi appoinment just looking for a little insight)Around 5 years ago i started vomiting early in the morning or late in the evening or if i tried to eat too fast.I had a negative endoscopy and negative scan for gall stones and placed on Nexium.I continue to vomit off and on , but blammed it on heartburn/working nights/stress ect.About a year ago i noticed food was getting "stuck" and that i would cought and vomit up most of my food.The vomiting is very painful and it feels as if all the muscles in my chest are contacting.I also experience intense chest pressure and discomfort when eating.It feels alot like someone is compressing my heart or stretching out my throat. I have trouble with breads,pasta,meats,anything too cold or too hot,cakes/pasteries,nuts , caffeine, carbonated beverages , alcohol ,and for some reason gum . I had 2 confimed cases of esophageal thrush which required treatment and a barium swallow which shows my esophageal muscles contracting and forcing food back up into the esophagus.My GI provider chose to dilate my throat during a routine endoscopy due to visible muscle spasms.He has'nt given me a name for this he just keeps saying the muscles do not work right.I am very underweight and exhausted from fighting to eat all the time.Any help or advice would be appreciated.

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15 Replies

  • Posted

    Hi  I have just been diagnosed with Achalasia,  your symptoms are exactly what I have been dealing with for a couple yours after loads of test and results come back negative, it makes you feel as if they think its all attention seeking.. I went on the website and found the symptoms, aparently because its a rare disease there is no real literature about it. When you are seen ask for a   Esophageal Manometry this a thin tube into you

    oesophagus it will tell them within 5 minutes that you have achalasia. At the moment I'm on milkshakes and I blend my food waiting for surgery. I have found a meetup group on line which I also found helpful I wish you well   

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    • Posted

      I just feel so discouraged when things come back negativesadI really felt like the doctor was putting me off so finally i booked an apoinment first thing in the am and tried to eat some breakfast in front of him. I ended up coughing and spitting most if it back up. The look on his face was pure shock lol.I'm nervous about the maonometry , but he did mention after my dilation that I would possibly need a pressure test and/or a ph probe.I'm glad you finally got a diagnosis.Good luck with surgerysmile
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  • Posted

    I have similar issues and diagnosis was confirmed as Achalasia after the manometry test which is the gold standard. Must get this done immediately. 
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  • Posted

    Hi

    Your symptoms may well be those of achalasia of the cardia. Its not a common condition and no-one really knows why people get it. However there is a lot of evidence to suggest that it may be an autoimmune disorder where ytou have produced antibodies to the nerve cells in your oesophagus and so have the dosordered oesophageal mobility that they found on your barium swallow.

    Typically the symptoms are those of having difficulty swallowing, particularly some of the foods you describe. Food gets stuch just above the gastro-oesophageal valve and it can be painful. Often vomiting whilst distressing does relieve the discomfort.

    You may experience reflux at night when laying down. This reflux is often oesophageal reflux not gatric...i.e its the food you have eaten in the evening thats stuck in a distended oesophagus thats coming back up.

    In the meantime try to eat as early as possible. Eat small amounts at a time. Eat slowly and drink warm water if that helps. Avoid foods like bread and potatoes and rice.

    If you have a referral I am sure they will do a manometry test. Here they push a very small fine tube up a nostril and down the back of your throat and into your oesophagus to measure the pressure. Dont worry ..it sounds horrible and its just a little uncomfortable..not painful in any degree and once in place its ok.

    Im sure that from the last barium swallow they have rules out a hiatus hernia which can again cause some of the symptoms you describe and also they have done a blood test and ruled out helicobacter pylori???????

    But in the ansence of anything else I would say your symptoms do sound like achalasia. Dont wory a small op as a day case will sort it out. I had my op last septemeber; had most of the symptoms you describe and more. I am now 80% back to normal which is probably as good as it gets.

    mssg me if you want more info

    Good luck

    Graeme

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    • Posted

      Hi Graeme, i am about to go for a procedure. Did you have Heller's myotomy or a balloon dilation?
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    • Posted

      Hi

      I knew all about balloon dilation and rejected it. It has risks of perforation and many people find the relief from symptoms is temporary. Many have it 're-done. I had a myotomy and then a partial anterior misapplication. The myotomy effectively wrecks the valve and though some people don't have a misapplication, it is pretty much the gold standard technique. This surgery does require an experienced surgeon and I was lucky to live in Bristol and got the services of Mr James hewes. The man is a genius. As I was an immunologist I knew a lot about the condition and surgery. I did enjoy watching the video of my own op!!

      if you do indeed have achalasia from the tests push for this surgery. Done as an over nighter. Done using key hole surgery. 5 small incisions. All now faded. No complaints and 80% better. Still have some swallowing problems with some foods. But no nightime refux and I can eat pretty much ok.

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    • Posted

      Yes they did test me for H.Pylori and also celiac disease which came back negative.I do notice the that middle of the day I can eat much better. If i try too early or too late I usually end up throwing everything back up. I'm nervous to have the manometry test  as a coworker of mine said it was absolutely terrible,but if thats what it takes.I woke out a dead sleep the last two nights because I needed to vomit so tiredsad
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  • Posted

    Yes, although I can't say that I've had painful vomiting. But those other things, mostly, yes. 
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  • Posted

    As others have commented already your case does seem to look like Achalasia. Have you looked into POEM? Per-Oral Endoscopic Myotomy is a new treatment for the achalasia with no incision. There is now plenty of literature online and something you should at least consider. I had the procedure in Feb 2014 and it has cleared up all my Achalasia related issues such as food regurgitation, chest pressure, weight loss, sleepless nights and so on. I was in the hospital for around five days and then had to take it easy at home for a further two weeks. It is now 3 months since the surgery and my follow-up check was 100% clear so now back to leading a normal life.  
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    • Posted

      Hi Robert

      Where did you have your POEM done.

      From what I have read it is usually a couple of days in hospital.

      Why did you have 5 days in hospital

      Glad it sorted your problem.

      I am considering this treatment against the traditional Heller Myotomy, but as it is so new am a bit unsure.

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    • Posted

      Hi Len,

      I had my POEM done in Japan. I have lived here for quite a while and my op was done by the surgeon who created this procedure. 

      The first two days were for check-ups and pre-op stuff. 

      I had the op on the 3rd day and was released on the 5th day. 

      My surgeon travels extensively and conducts procedures abroad on a regular basis.  

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    • Posted

      Did you get an indication as to how long the cure would last or would you require further treatment
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    • Posted

      This procedure was first performed in Sept 2008 and since then the results have been close to perfect. Unlike many other procedures there is no time frame given for its effectiveness. I have been told to have a one year check-up locally and only need to report back to my hospital in Tokyo if there are any problems. If you need the website details I can send you the link through the private messaging on this website.
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  • Posted

    Hi I know that horrible feeling that achalasia comes with. to make sure that it is or is not achalasia take a esophogal manometry test. It is a test that measures the presure of the muscles in your esophogus. If there is anything that is not normal, the doctor should be able to properly diagnose your problem. Also remember that achalasia and GERD have very simmiler symptoms and achalasia is often mistreated because people think that it is Gastroesophogul Reflux Disease. GOOD LUCK!!!
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