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I am a 38 year old female who has suffered with severe chest pain since the age of 23. The pain initially woke me up in the night and still does on occasions. I had investigations over a number of years while the pain continued as I started to suffer with a difficulty swallowing.I was initially with Achalasia and told that I should have a Hellers Myotomy and this I understood to be a large procedure which they didn't at the time routinely do via a laparoscope ( keyhole approach). I refused this and had a dilation of the Sphincter in the top of my stomach (the cardiac sphincter)and was then able to eat my food more easily. However I still suffered from chest pain and returned to see a Consultant in London ( UK) and following more tests he diagnosed Diffuse Oesophageal Spasm. I now take Nifedipine sublingually 5mg capsules for the pain and they work when I bite on them as a liquid is released under my tongue and it relives the spasm . It has been suggested that I use GTN spray as the pain is getting more severe but at the moment I will stick with what I have. Stress is a key factor in this problem and my condition worsens after a long period of stress . I think my next step in managing this will be to seek help with stress management and not taking on too much at work or personally. I hope this history helps other people facing this as it can be tough to deal with. I don't think many realise how severe the pain can be - I have had to stop my car before now as I feared I may crash due to the pain !
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