GERD or something else?

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I would really appreciate some of your thoughts, I have had the symptoms below for over a month now and have not been diagnosed with anything. I have had a cardiac workup done (24h ECG, echo, and stress test (echo was before stress test)) and am told it is "probably" nothing cardiac-related.

The symptoms are:

- Chest pain in left side, usually around nipple (I am male) - usually an ache, sometimes sharp

- Back and shoulder pain - usually an ache

- Arm pain - usually a dull ache

- Fatigue and lightheadedness (not always)

- Belching/gurgling in lower throat

I do not get any acid regurgitation (at least to my awareness). The symptoms are often made better by burping but also by massaging of the chest and sleep. I have not found a pattern which brings them on, but the pains get worse when I am driving and the belching is usually when I am standing up or walking.

I have been taking omeprazole which has had little effect.

Thanks in advance!


1 like, 6 replies


6 Replies

  • Posted

    One more thing - the chest pains started a week or two before the belching/gargling. Prior to that I had on/off chest pains when driving, but very rarely at any other time.
  • Posted

    Difficult to say but I do empathise as I have had these symptoms, and others, connected with reflux most of my life and, like you, have had all the heart tests. All have been very positive. I know my heart is healthy (though my dad died when I was a young teen of a heart attack, probably thinking it was just indigestion again from which he'd suffered all his life). I even have an implanted heart monitor.

    It sounds as if you are getting trapped wind. We are supposed to be able to release gas normally when upright (Transient Lower Oesophageal Relaxations) which is easier when standing or walking. When sitting (eg driving), your stomach can be compressed forcing a gas bubble into the fundus, pushing against the chest, rather than permitting a belch.

    The vagus nerve carries the signals but can produce pains in locations other than where they originate. ("vagus" and "vague" are from the same root.)

    Omeprazole may be good at reducing acid but not at reducing reflux.

    Learn more about reflux and controlling it by visiting www DownWithAcid org uk and finding the section on Reflux by scrolling down the contents (home) page.

    • Posted

      Thanks for the info, I will take a look at the page and speak to my doctor about the Omeprazole as I do not feel any acid-related GERD symptoms.

      My dad also died of a heart attack when I was a teenager, his only complaints in his final months were that he could not always keep up with others when walking so it worries me how sudden it can happen. A lot of doctors tend to brush me off because I am still young, but symptoms are symptoms and I do not want to ignore them (I've spent hours trying to find a likely match online).

  • Posted

    Hi, I have all the symtpoms you mention, apart from the arm pain, is your chest pain on and off or a constant ache I have just started getting the gurgling in lower throat too am on ranitide for reflux think I have silent reflux as have had some sore throats not much, but had a taste in my mouth that I can't describe and belching and fullness oh the list is endless the joys xx
    • Posted

      Hi, the chest pains are on/off and do not seem to have much of a pattern to them besides getting worse in the evening or when driving. The arm pain is thankfully less frequent but still there.

      I don't get any of the sore throats or acid tastes but I do get a lot of the gurgling - it almost feels like the gurgling eases the nausea and chest pain initially, but it soon comes back!

    • Posted

      I have these symptoms also.  Had gastritis five  years ago but these are additional symptoms and the throat drives me potty.  It started out just sore on and off but has progressed to flippin painful and in the chest and back also.



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