Looking for ideas on how to help with gastritis/dyspepsia symptoms?

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Hi everyone. I am a 22 year old female and after 2 years of mysterious symptoms with no answers I’m just feeling really discouraged and at a loss with where to go in terms of answers or treatments. Nearly 2 years ago I went to bed healthy and woke up and began dry heaving. After this incident, I started experiencing these episodes of hunger-like cramping and burning in my stomach along with incapacitating nausea. These symptoms would occur at night and keep me up for the entire night sitting straight up and intermittently dry heaving. It was my final year of college and the symptoms were causing me to miss class or have to leave early when I felt like I was going to get sick. I went to the doctor and was prescribed Omeprazole for gastritis symptoms and although the pills helped immensely and allowed me to live my life again, the symptoms never completely went away and about every week at least 1 day I would also have to take an H-2 blocker like Pepcid in order to completely stop the symptoms. I then sought help from a GI specialist and had many tests done. I was tested for H-pylori (negative), had an endoscopy (showed slight irritation but biopsy also came back H-pylori negative), a ultrasound of my gallbladder, an MRI of my abdominal area, and even a last ditch bloodwork to check my thyroid. All of these provided no answers and left me low on money and out of options for tests to take. I also tried lifestyle changes including cutting out alcohol (which did seem to make symptoms worse along with anything that would typically irritate a stomach), never eating spice ( which I never really ate to begin with), and just generally eating a mild and bland diet, I kept a food journal to no avail, and I even raised the head of my bed so I wouldn’t be laying flat at night. All the while my doctor just kept prescribing me pills including the Omeprazole which I don’t want to keep taking. It has many scary sounding long term effects and I’m only 22 years old. I just don’t know what else to do. If I stop the pills I can’t eat, sleep or go to work, but they’re bad for me as well in the long run and I just want some kind of answer to why I was healthy one night and then woke up to nearly 2 straight years of unexplained symptoms. Can anyone think of anything that could potentially help or could be tested for? I’m at a loss for where to go from here.

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  • Posted

    I also forgot to mention that my doctor even went so far as to prescribe low dose antidepressants which have helped some people with dyspeptic symptoms. I had to stop taking them after immediately having bad side effects and I have also tried the natural medication FD Gard which did not help at all either.

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  • Posted

    Hi, Please don't worry. I have had the same symptoms and can totally feel your pain. You have to make sure to continue eating a blend diet and see if you maybe have some kind of food sensitivity. Coffee, Tea, spices etc. all makes it worse.. also medication...

    I am now gluten and dairy free and I drink .. after a long way of trying o figure out what could possibly cause my pain and those nausea attacks... I am also taking Magnesium/ calcium before I go to bed and aloe vera (5000). I also take probiotics and drink half a glass of ginger kombucha every day.

    I am fine now and my stomach is happy.

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  • Posted

    Your story is scarily similar to my own. I'm 26 and these symptoms started for me about two and a half years ago. I haven't been tested for H Pylori yet as when I first started getting sick they just put me on Omeprazole too, without offering any tests, and they ended up squashing some symptoms but the side effects have been terrible to say the least and I still had to limit my diet. I cut out alcohol and spicy foods too, I still to this day eat such bland food and no alcohol and still get symptoms. I am currently weaning myself off the medication in the hopes they will do some tests and we get somewhere with it because I've had enough.

    I unfortunately have no answers for you, only to say that you're not alone in your experience and I think that these "unexplainable" symptoms are common, but it's frustrating when you can't get to the bottom of something that is diminishing your quality of life, especially at the ages we are. Have they checked your pancreas? They checked mine recently because I lost a lot of weight in a very short time when first sick, alas my test came back negative, but perhaps worth trying or looking up symptoms to see if they match yours? Also, did they check that you aren't coeliac or have intolerants to certain foods?

    The other thing I would say is that sometimes too little acid gets mistaken for too much acid and so being on the medication eases the symptoms but doesn't tackle the root of the problem. It's very hard to come off them but perhaps worth discussing trying to come off with your doctor and see what they think. I've been trying to come off them for the past year, so it may be a long journey for you but hopefully worth it in the end.

    There are so many stomach and gut issues that have come to light recently that still aren't widely accepted by doctors and they straight up just don't bother to check for them or maybe they don't have the tests for them, I don't know. But it's impossible to navigate. My suggestion is: do as much research online as you can on what it could be, and take it all with you to the doctor until you get to the bottom of it.

    All the best to you.

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    • Posted

      I wouldn't google symptoms at all to see if they match because google does not give an accurate picture. Resrarching your symptoms only causes health anxiety. It is better to leave everything to your doctor who is the expert.

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    • Posted

      My faith in doctors is very little as they haven't been very good with me. Googling can sometimes cause health anxiety, that's true, but sometimes you have no option but to be your own doctor.

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    • Posted

      If you have lost faith in your doctor, change your doctor and keep doing that until you get answers. I was losing faith in my doctors and I tried being my own doctor and researching my symptoms to give them more to work on. However, this triggered terrible health anxiety and made me a lot worse. I tried seeing various doctors and after three and a half months, I found one that diagnosed me correctly while the others could not.

      Avoid trying to be your own doctor; you will not get help that way! Keeping on seeing your doctor is the only option.

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  • Posted

    Keep taking the omeprazole since they helped you; your doctor knows what he is doing. so trust your doctor. Don't worry about the cause; simply relax. Keeping calm will help your stomach; anxiety will make it worse. You are doing everything you can for your stomach and have had many negative tests. All these tests. are accurate; there is no point in any more.

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  • Posted

    I would seriously look for another doctor. doesn't seem like your doc you have now is not worth the time of day. I hate to knock doctors but sometimes they just care about the money. not a patients well being. hope you find some answers and good luck.

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  • Posted

    There are 2 more things you can do. Consult a registered dietition for a food menu for your symptoms and go to a hospital E/R for their opinion. They are better equipped than a private doctor.

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  • Posted

    Took me a long time to get my gastritis under control. I also dry heaved, and suffered with sleeping etc.. drinking sulcrafate heavily for several months helped. But when I cut ALL grease out of my diet. It seemed to be my solution. Sometimes I get some grease in a food and the symptoms come right back for me. Quitting drinking alcohol was a great move for you in my personal opinion. Just not a good mix for Gastritis. I have tried the antidepressants too, but to no avail for me. Hang in there keep trying.

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  • Posted

    I have gone through exactly what your going through 2018 was the worst year of my life. I have had severe nausea, food made me feel nausea, I felt bloated all the time I have loss weight of around 11kgs in 1 month, did so many test complete blood count test, ultra sound all came normal I couldnt find any answers nothing was working I was a healthy guy and suddenly All of this happened I have changed 4 doctors I was in severe anxiety and was so tensed and depressed all the time because of this and finally met a very good and known gastroenterologist. I did my endoscopy and the result showed Antral gastritis. Now I am better but spicy food and alcohol triggers the symptoms again

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  • Posted

    Hi, sorry to hear your troubles. I am too not a fan of continuing omeprazole. PPIs sure are effective, but are never recommended for long-term use.

    I would suggest you meet a reflux specialist and see if you can phase out PPIs and take more supplements and precautionary measures.

    Here are some tips that might help you:

    1. Avoid trigger foods - they could be dairy, alcohol, smoking, spicy foods. It might help to keep a food journal to see what your trigger foods are
    2. Consume more probiotics
    3. Eat fermented foods such as kimchi and kombucha
    4. Consume healthy fats
    5. Don't skip breakfast
    6. Finish your dinner at least 3 hours before bedtime

    Here is an article on gastritis, its long-term implications and dos and don'ts .You can also read more about peptics ulcers and benefits of kombucha there.

    I wish you well.

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