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Hi, (Hi Debs!!) My name is Caroline, and l have had the Nissen Fundop, in January. This will be a long post, as l may as well tell my full story. Lol, sat comfy? I have always, for as long as l can remember, suffered from heartbnurn, from being a child. When l was 15, l was given an endoscopy, and diagnosed with a duodenal ulcer. This was cured using zantac, and for a couple of years was a lot better, though still not right.
After my first child was born, my symptoms were back with a vengeance, so l was given another endoscopy, which showed up a hiatus hernia. I was given a course of zantac, and told that was all they could do. I kept getting increasingly worse reflux, and would wake up through the night, acid pouring down my nose, and out of my mouth, choking, and unable to breathe, because l knew that it would be very dangerous if l inhaled it. Anyway, l was back and fore to the doctor, who suggested l should lose some weight. l was comfortable with my weight, 9and a half stone, and 5'3. Not slim, but certainly not fat. I was given this advice, and no treatment for the nextcouple of years, and then l just quit going, and suffered in silence. Then, 12 years later, l went out for lunch with my Mum one day, and just could not swallow. I saw a post from someone who said the same thing, the food physically would not go down. I made a doctors appointment, for the next day, and told her, l couldn't even swallow water, she sent me away with 20mg of omeprozole. I couldn't swallow them. That was the Friday. Over the weekend, l was ill, couldn't eat, or drink, Monday was a local holiday, so l didn't have to work, l went in on Tiuesday, but really shouldn't have, l went home, and collapsed in tears. I was meant to go back to the docs in 2 weeks, which was still about ten days away at this point. My partener and Mum tried that night to get me to go to the hospital, but l refused. I knew l was getting severely dehydrated, but couldn't seem to acknowledge that l needed treatment. Anyway, on the Wednesday, Mark literallt carried me out to the car, and took me to hospital.
I was put into a cubicle, and doctors were in and out, the pain by this time was so severe, l thought l had a tumour or something. I was given all kind sof scans, and as my breathing was really bad, l was given an ECG, the tested my pancreas, scanned my gallbladder, liver, etc, but all showed up nothing, so they gave me morphine, and it wasn't until that point that l realised just how much pain l had been in, in started to work at the centre of the pain, but as it moved out, the pain became evident, around it. I was admitted to the ward, and put on a drip, which they kept me on for a week, l was given IV Lansoprazole, nifedipine, which you crack with your teeth, IV buscopan, and buccastem, which dissolves on your gum.
As soon as l was able to swallow water, l was taken for an endoscopy. The surgeon was absolutely speechless, he said it was one of the worst cases of oesophagitis he'd ever seen, and that was after a week of treatment, and nil by mouth. I'd had reflux for so long, that my gullet was raw. Anyway, after another few days l was allowed home, and referred to another hospital, to see a surgeon that does the procedure. He did the PH and manometry tests, although he was certain l would need to have the procedure, it was red tape that dictated it had to be done. The tests showed up high levels of acid, and the same problem that Debs has, with the faulty valve. Prof K said he would do the op within the next 6 months. From the first time l was admitted, to my surgery was just less than a year, l was admitted to hospital two more times for drips, when my gullet inflamed again, but there was no fighting for it, l went to the doc, and she arranged me a bed straight away.
On my first discharge from the hospital, my doctor sat on my bed, and told me in no uncertain terms that l was to consider myself seriously ill, \"Young Lady, you are recovering from a serious illness, and your family should treat you as such\" (lol, or words to that effect!!) I was given buccastem, and 30mg Lansoprazole when l left hospital, went back to see the doctor two weeks later because it wasn't working, so the dose was doubled, and l was given Domperidone. The next few months were a struggle, l was weak, and tearful, tired, l felt 80, not 30!!
The surgery was the best thing l have ever had. The change to my life is endless. Not to have that acid constantly burning my throat, and food travelling back up inmto mt throat is such a novelty to me. I have been left with side effects, though. I can now 'burp'. I couldn't for the first 3 months, but now, it's not a problem, but they don't half smell!! Lol, sorry to be graphic, but it's a problem!! I cannot, however vomit, l had a stomach upset recently, but although my stomach was retching, l couldn't vomit, and that was very very painful, so l have been given anti semetics to keep in the house in case of this happening again. I saw the surgeon in March, who was concerned because l still cannot swallow meat, like chicken, chops, steak, things like that, which is no hardship for me, but he wants to see me again in July, and if it's no better, he wants to take me back in and stretch my gullet. I don't want it, as l'm afraid he stretches too much,a nd undoes his good work!!! The other problem l have been left with, that is getting increasingly worse, is diarrhoea.. I was warned that this can be a problem for a small number of patients, and it seems l may be one. It is sudden, explosive, and almost uncontrollable. It's getting more and more frequent, and l'm currently in the process of keeping a food diary to see if there's anything that may set it off. At the moment, l suspect ice cream may be the culprit. I hope it is just an intolerance to a certain food, because it would be very hard to live with otherwise!!!
Anyway, thank you for reading my very lengthy post, and l hope that it help some of you in your decision, about surgery, it is not without it's problems, but for me, when l look at them, in eprspective, l wouldn't change a thing. I had little choice in the matter, due to the high dosage of drugs l needed to keep it under control, and the damage that had been done already. I feel better in myself, the constant backachehas gone, the constant dragging feeling, as though there was a weight attached to my gullet, l need less sleep, have more energy, can drink wine, eat cvheese, and curry!!!! lol, that alone makes it worth it!!! Take care all, and feel free to ask me any questions. Take care all...xxxx
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