Dysphagia, belching, nausea, weight loss from not eating

Posted , 3 users are following.

Hey everyone.

My symptoms started when I got braces put on earlier this year. I started to have difficulty eating certain foods like spinach, celery, melted cheese, etc. I started avoiding going to restaurants as it would take me forever to chew my food and even then- I feared I would choke on it.

Fast forward to a month ago. I was eating dinner when it started to feel like it was getting stuck in my throat and I thought I was going to choke. I went to emerg where they checked my vitals, did blood work, briefly looked at my mouth & checked my breathing with a stethoscope. They said everyone was normal and sent me home. I’ve since been to the hospital four times now and each time they just send me home and put in a referral to a specialist. Only one of the four doctors said they felt like the skin on the right side of my neck is “thicker”- so she made an appointment for an ultrasound of my neck and thyroid next week.

When I was able to eat food, my symptoms started out as:

-**difficulty swallowing**

-feels like esophagus is closing

-feels like food is getting stuck in the lower part of the esophagus

-slight trouble breathing

-excessive belching/fullness after drinking

-chest burning/tightness

(I felt like I was having a heart attack)

I’ve been on a liquid diet for almost a month now as I await to see a specialist for an endoscopy. I recently started to lose weight rapidly, 14lbs in the past month, due to not being able to eat- let alone drink “thicker” drinks like smoothies or milkshakes. The last Dr. suspected esophageal candidiasis but I’ve been taking nystatin suspension and fluconazole tablets and don’t notice an improvement of symptoms.

My current symptoms are:

-**trouble swallowing**

-tight throat

-intermittent nausea

-belching after drinking

-fatigue & weight loss due to not eating

-cold sensitivity/bluish fingernails

-thick/stringy saliva

-average temperature is 36

History: I’m a 22 year old female. I have an autoimmune disease and take corticosteroids. I eat a lot of spicy foods. I’ve never had any symptoms of GERD or anything. I’m a fit, active, young adult who has never smoked and I rarely drink alcohol. I have anxiety but food is my comfort lol and Ive never had any issues swallowing. I know there has to be something wrong.

Family history: Graves’ disease/hyperthyroidism, diabetes, heart attack, colon cancer, issues with kidneys, etc. 

I’m so paranoid & terrified as I’ve never had symptoms like this before... I’m scared it could be the C word... Can a regular panel of blood work indicae if I have cancer or something serious like that? 

Does anyone have any guesses at what it could be? Has anyone experienced something similar to this? Or can anyone give me advice to help me ease my mind? I feel like I’m going crazy.. I mean if it was something super serious they probably wouldn’t have sent me home right? I’m so stressed and anxious I can’t sleep at night and can’t focus during the day. Please help. 

0 likes, 3 replies

3 Replies

  • Posted

    Hi ash09275. I hope you are feeling okay. This disease sucks, if you have it. I am surprised when you went to emergency/hospital that they did not do an endoscopy. that way they could tell if there was an obstruction or something else. I had 2 barium swallows and a few gastroscopies ( endoscopies ) to tell me that I have Achalasia. I had a few stretches of the eosophagus  and dilations to try to help. they did for a bit of time. Last summer I could not eat or swallow even water, I lost about 22 pounds in 11 days. I went to hospital and my surgeon did a scope and found that I had lots of food stuck in my eosophagus. I am assuming from this stupid, horrible disease! He got it all out and stretched it again and I was good for almost a year. just had it down again in April, it is not really helping. Really have to be careful with what you eat. I have started on B12 pills, I find this helps with my swallowing, I am going back to my Homeopath as well to see what else I can add to my diet. I have heard that Magesium and potassium helps too. I would really like to control this disease as much as possible without having to get any surgery if possible. However I am going to get a referral to the surgeon in Toronto that does the new POEM procedure and hear what he has to say about what my options are. Please let me know how you are doing. It is so frustrating!!!!!!! I feel for you!
    • Posted

      Wow, that is crazy! Thanks so much for sharing your story ?? Achalasia sounds like such a difficult disease to have.. I’m so sorry you’ve had to go through all of that. Do you live in Ontario as well? Because in my town the medical resources are very limited. Maybe my hospital was just too lazy to call in a surgeon/gastroenterologist... instead they would rather see me suffer and my health deteriorate for weeks at a time. I saw the referral sheet from the doctor afterwards & he didn’t even mark my need to get an endoscopy as “urgent”.. apparently not being able to eat, function or breathe properly isn’t anything isn’t important. Ugh. I have a consultation next week with a surgeon & I’m hoping he’ll be able to fit me in for a scope the same day... I’ve definitely researched the POEM procedure, it seems promising and like a long-term solution! Please do keep me updated with your health and let me know if you decide to go through with that as well smile All the best to you... ?

  • Posted

    Hi ash...

    You are in the right place for advice on swallowing, so can relax with that knowledge.. Your symptoms could be caused by many things including good old fashioned anxiety or stress... Stress can present almost any symptom one can imagine! .. but I am guessing you know that!... The chances of you having Achalasia are about 10 in a million so please remember that as you take advice... My advice is to try and find some peace somehow - from your self or from those close to you. Do something that makes you feel happy and whole for as long as possible...smile

    Of course continue to take medical advice / action (like an endoscopy and manometry) but please take some peace in the knowledge that it is possibly just temporary and caused by stress...Once you have had an endoscopy and confirm no blockages, you will have weeks/months/ possibly years to work out what happened here, and with just a bit of luck, it will be written off as an 'episode'..smile 

    Easy for me to say - but Say bugger to stress, and bring on some fun, combined with an objective approach to health advice... You are young and sound like you could still easily turn of all this worry around.. smile 

    Much love and healthy karma..


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