Liquids getting stuck but not solids

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Hello all,

I was wondering if anyone could offer any advice for a condition I have just found out I have and which appears to be rather rare.

For about six months I have been suffering from a burning sensation in throat/chest, dry throat, lots of burping and gas, some nausea and a bitter taste in my mouth. The problem came on seemingly overnight. At first it was assumed I had acid reflux, however having been through many tests it has now been confirmed that this is not the case.

I have had blood tests, an ultrasound, endoscopy, 24 hour pH testing and manometry, Today I saw my consultant and he confirmed that everything was fine except the manometry, which has shown that liquids (but not food) sit in my esophagus for much longer than normal. He admitted to being a bit stumped and offered no suggestions for a cure but told me he'd like to see me in two years' time for a review. My lower esophageal sphincter is working normally, so surgery would not help.

Personally I feel that there may be another issue such as food intolerances going on here, as certain foods such as bread do seem to make it worse. I wonder if perhaps I have always had this esophageal issue and it is simply aggravating this new problem.

I was wondering whether anyone else has been told they have dysmotility concerning liquids only, and if so if you have any tips?

Thanks for your help!

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5 Replies

  • Posted

    Is the problem the same with cold, warm and hot liquids?   And with water, thin soup and thicker soup?   And does it occur when you drink water without having recently eaten?

    ​The manometry measures the pressure of the muscles driving the peristalsis, or contractions that should send food and drink down into your stomach.  So something must be triggering some kind of reaction.

    ​My guess is that the manometry analysis might hold a clue, perhaps in the eyes of another expert, perhaps?

    I think having a systematic test for food intolerance might be a good idea.

    Meanwhile try sipping water at slow intervals.

    ​I presume that the tests have ruled out bile reflux?   

    When you say bread is bad, is this because it congeals in your oesophagus?   

    ​I wonder if there is some form of residue in your oesophagus that the water dilutes or activates in some way, causing a chemical reaction - but perhaps that is too fanciful.

    This ois all unqualified speculation by the way, so treat it accordingly!

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    • Posted

      After I wrote this I sent a copy of what you had written to a surgeon and a specialist to see if they had any ideas.   The answer is technical at times:

      'If there is a problem with the extrinsic nerves supplying the oesophageal then primary peristalsis isn't well initiated but solid[s will] activate the intrinsic nerves so clear well. This is unlikely unless the patient has had some kind of surgery or has a neuropathy. Second, in patients with a desensitised oesophagus (sometimes due to reflux) the oesophagus doesn't sense the water so doesn't contract, but can respond to challenge such as bread or larger volumes of water, I would like to see the manometry report if possible. Third, the nausea, belching etc is possibly due to small intestinal bacterial overgrowth which is quite common in patients who have been on PPIs [like Esomeprazole] or had a previous gastroenteritis / food poisoning. This could be tested for with a lactulose breath test.'

      'Now maybe they are actually asking an interesting question about how different liquids and pH's might affect an oesophageal reaction....?   

      The residue in the oesophagus is fermenting anyway. '

      ?If you can email me outside this forum on it might be possible to put you in touch with one of the specialists who might be willing to consider it in more detail as a matter of medical/scientific interest, but you should understand that this is also speculation by people who have not seen the details of your results.

      Moderator comment: I have removed the email address as we do not publish these in the forums. If users wish to exchange contact details please use the Private Message service.

      http://patient.uservoice.com/knowledgebase/articles/398331-private-messages

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  • Posted

    My mother had it and I pretty much don't ever remember her without the sx you describe. I think I may have some sx, but not full blown. I think it has to be some type of neurological response that causes spasm and until the spasm relaxes throwing up is the only relief. I know for sure doctors truly don't know and not even the well intentioned  ones. I got to wonder if it is some type of nutritional  short coming that interfers with normal nerve function. God I wish you well and will pray for you cause it will sure interrupt your life. Consider what other people tell you cause I think they are more knowledgeable  in management than even doctors

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    • Posted

      Thanks so much for your response. I think you could be right in that it could be neurological. It's so frustrating to be told there's nothing they can do and I'm basically stuck with it forever sad

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  • Posted

    I have just sent you a further reply but it is waiting to be moderated because I put my email address into it.  But if you contact me direct through this forum I will let you know what a surgeon and specialist thought about your situation.
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