Swallowing pains 6 weeks after endoscopy

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I had an endoscopy with Bravo and biopsies taken 6 weeks ago and still

 have pains when swallowing and for a while after that.

I called the doctor a  few times, he wouldn’t directly admit that it was caused by endoscopy ( I don’t even know if its caused by biopsies or Bravo ph capsusle), the only thing he suggests is taking Gabapentine which seems to have lots of side effects.

I have been on pureed/ soft food for over 6 weeks and just want to know

how long can it last?

Before the procedure - the doctor said that 2 people out of thousands that he did had some pains for a couple of days!

Just want to know what are the real stats?

Did anybody have similar complications ? How long did it last?


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  • Posted

    Hi Polly, Don't know a lot about this - my 10 years' nursing experience was many years ago, before a lot of the modern inventions - but my money's on the Bravo capsule rather than the biopsy as the culprit. But one thing I do know, having just read up on the technology, is that I'd never consent to having one of these things in my oesophagus!

    Sorry if I'm asking a silly question... but it did eventually come out, didn't it? I mean, did you find it? From a quick glance at a few internet sites, I see that it can fail to spontaneously detach in a few cases. I'm guessing it has detached from the fact that your doctor has prescribed gabapentin, which is often used for pains a doctor deems to be psychologically generated. (And which you're quite right to be wary of.)

    On the assumption you're absolutely sure the entire capsule really did detach and pass through your digestive system, I'd suggest taking the smallest possible dose of gabapentin for a maximum of two weeks. If this is just a very understandable nervous reaction to the original implantation, a short course of gabapentin should be enough to break the cycle.

    This could, however, just be down to scarring - as a result of either the biopsies or the capsule implantation. I don't have your experience, but I did have something comparable. Two years ago I managed to swallow my large, spiky, one-tooth denture, which sat at the entrance to my oeophagus for three weeks while I was thrown out of one hospital after another as a neurotic nuisance. (Most doctors and nurses automatically assume that anyone over 60 who claims to have swallowed a denture has in fact simply mislaid it and imagined the whole thing.) Anyhoo, by the time they finally believed me and got it out, it had caused a fair amount of damage. I too had pain and difficulty swallowing at first, but it cleared up over the next few months, as the damage to my oesophagus slowly healed.

    I'd say give the gabapentin a short trial, provided you can tolerate it. You're unlikely to have serious withdrawal effects after such a short time, particularly if you keep the dose to the minimum. But if you have any nausea, dark-coloured vomiting, or dark stools - often described as looking like tar - you should get yourself to a hospital immediately and tell them the whole story, as these are signs of bleeding into the gastro-intestinal tract.

    I repeat - all the above is on the assumption you know the capsule detached. If you never found it you should get straight back to your doctor... and preferably sue him!

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    • Posted

      Hi, Thank you so much for the detailed reply. I dont have a clue if I still have the capsule attached, the doctor said, it's unlikely .

      I just dont want any more side effects so wary of gapapentine - possibly some nerve was damaged after the biopsy , not sure if this is the case, how long can the pain last.


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    • Posted

      Unlikely but by no means impossible, according to what I read in even a brief internet search this morning! Have you had an X-ray? That's the only way to prove it's gone.

      I'm sending you a few links by private message so you can see what I found. Can't post them here as it isn't allowed. Private messaging on this site is quite safe, doesn't expose either party's email address.

      In the meantime, I'd still strongly suggest putting yourself on a small dose of gabapentin - cut the tablets in quarters if necessary - for two weeks max, just to see if it makes a difference. You're unlikely to get serious side-effects on this dose and for this duration.

      Talk to you soon.


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  • Posted

    Do you feel  there was an udue injury to your throat? If so, the statistic of 2/1000 is irrelevant because it would appear to occur without an injury.
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