Too much or too little acid!

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Hi all

From what I've been reading there are two schools of thought regarding acid reflux. One stating that it is caused by too much acid, whilst the other argues that it is actually too little acid leading to bacterial overgrowth whereby food sits and ferments in the stomach.

Im only two weeks into my PPI medication and was wandering that the correct clinical pathway to treat GERD should be not to issue PPIs immediately but to perform PH testing first. I have silent reflux and I have no idea whether the PPIs are helping. If someone has low stomach acid and the second school of thought happens to be correct then medication will only make the problem worse. Any thoughts on this anyone?

cheers

S

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  • Posted

    Hi ya I know how you feel. I am so worried I had the scoop in 2013 because of difficulty swallowing and they said it was gastritis. I have been on ppi for four years now on and off and this year am struggling again with chest pain. Pain on the diaphragm and constipation. I am having another endoscopy next week and I am praying everything will be ok. I am so stress out and. To new honest some time. Google makes me more nervous because of all the symtoms you can think you have. My children are very worried about me googleing all types of symptoms. Sorry am rambling. I pray that you can. Find help and get test. So you know what is what. I

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  • Posted

    I absolutely agree with you. I have had the ph testing and it said that I had low stomach acid and yet doctors still want to give me acid blockers. Seems like They really don't know what else to do.
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  • Posted

    I was prescribed PPI's after I developed terrible LPR symptoms 13 years ago just after I started on BP MEDS. Lisinopril and a duretic. Later, was diagnosed with borderline type 2 diabetes. I have SUFFERED all this time and drove everyone up the wall, myself included. Thing is I KNOW I have sluggish digestion so to have been prescribed Lanzaprazole 15 or 30g per day WITHOUT proper testing was a mistake, I feel. Anyway, I decided to STOP taking this stuff in January and now I am virtually cured! Of the cough anyway. I find drinking flat zero coke is far more effective if something threatens to set me off AND it is more pleasurable to take! I have altered my diet. Many healthy foods I have ditched. No more salad, it is MURDER! I eat lots of veg to compensate. I can eat dairy and drink alcohol as in one ass of red wine every so often and spicy food is fine. I have a problem with citrus fruits including my favourite, pineapple. I no longer eat that! I only eat between 6am and 6pm and make sure I do not dehydrate.
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  • Posted

    Hi S...I cured mine with PROBIOTICS. After suffering unbearable pain (even in my back when I burped!) and being unable to eat, sleep and even near the end of this I couldn't sit up! I spent my time in bed wondering how I was going to live my life! I heard about Probiotics, I started taking the probiotics "Critical Care 50 Billion Live Cultures" from the refrigerator section of the Healthfood Store. After 3 days my pain lessened, at the end of 7 days I was out of pain and started eating AND sleeping with no side effects whatsoever! **POOF** GONE! Can't say it enough on here... Probiotics, Probiotics, Probiotics!!! Try it, what can it hurt to try something? Each bottle has 30 capsules, try it for a month and be free of your acid problems! Good health to you! ........J.
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    • Posted

      Hi Jenny

      Yes, I'm taking probiotics at the moment. My trouble is that I've never had any GERD symptoms whatsoever. I needed an endoscopy to investigate a lump sensation in my throat. However, since the endoscopy was done Ive had a sharp pain in my chest for 1 week, this has subsided to a dull ache in the 3rd week. I also get a pain just below sternum and don't know if this is the procedure or the PPIs. Prior to going into hospital I was fine. maybe it's just a bit of bruising!!

      cheers S

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  • Posted

    What my GP did was to put me on PPI for 8 weeks. I then went back to discuss  the results of taking the medication and told her it made a huge difference. She then referred me to a consultant who then did a ph test to confirm reflux. She would not let me stay on PPI without a diagnosis from a consultant

    Doing ph testing staright away doesn't make sense as its quite an invasive test, depending on how its done,  and expensive, my last one was private and cost around £1000. Many people could be put through a very unnecessary procedure

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  • Posted

    Hi all

    thanks for the replies. I'm seeing my consultant this Wednesday for my biopsie results and have a whole load of questions ready to ask. E.G. Testing for H.pylori, candida, etc. what I really hope to get from him is a clinical pathway rather than you've had chronic reflux and now you will need PPIs for the rest of your life. 

    If I have no hernia and if the LES is just relaxed from diet then I can change that and hopefully come off medication. I was big coffee/ tea drinker, also loved my chocolate and probably 5 nights out of 7 had a couple of glasses of wine. It's also probably down to stress too for various reasons so I need to address that.

    You're probably correct regarding the cost of a Ph test but I have also seen a test where they place a small capsule in your oesophagus and leave it there so no need for a tube to be left in the nose for 24 hours. Not sure on the cost though.

    Off to have my Becks Blue now (once all the bubbles have gone)......living the high life!

    Cheers

    S

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  • Posted

    The £1000 I referred to is the cost of the capsule placed inside with the wireless monitor. They do an endscopy at the same time so you get the benfit of that as well as any biopies they take at the same time.
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    • Posted

      Hi

      Thanks for the info. How long was the capsule in for? Also, does the attachment dissolve allowing it to pass through your body or do you need another endoscopy for removal?

      Cheers

      S

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  • Posted

    I carried the monitoring unit until the battery died which was about 48hrs

    The capsule simply drops off (hopefully) and passes through you. I never saw it but assume it has gone.

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  • Posted

    Hi everyone,

    Indigestion is always caused by having insufficient stomach acid due to the nature of the food that we have eaten such as oily food, heavy proteins, drinking too much of beverage along with food. This I now realised, after having become a patient myself.

    As I have mentioned in other forums, PPI or H2 blockers should always be the last resort and only when patients have stomach ulcers. Doctors should ask patients to monitor their diet habits first before assuming.

    After having reduced our stomach acid, it is not easy to reverse the damage done. Firstly, when we stop taking PPIs or H2 Blockers, we may have a rebound. We need to wean off rather than stop cold turkey.

    Meanwhile, what I have done to to take a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar mixed with water, digestive enzymes and probiotics. This has done wonders especially when I take a heavy meal. I might drop my apple cider vinegar and digestive enzymes, and replace them with digestive enzymes capsules that contain HCl.

    Try to avoid endoscopy unless necessary because chances are you might get your esophagus damaged if the doctor is not experienced enough.

    I believe in natural remedies more as there is lesser chance of side effects.

    Hope this helps. Good luck.

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  • Posted

    I have some of the same questions.  If it's really too little acid, then why do the PPI's work on the premise of reducing too MUCH acid?  Also, I asked my GI doc. about Apple Cider Vinegar after reading about this as a natural remedy and he said they don't prescribe it generally because it makes some people's symptoms worse.  I also don't experience heartburn but worry about having silent reflux, especially because I have Achalasia which means acid could be sitting in my esophagus longer.  In addition, I wonder about lactic acid (in the esophagus) and whether or not medications work to reduce this. 
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  • Posted

    “There's a couple of tests you can try at home that will you give you an idea of where your acid levels are.

    Baking Soda test. First thing in the morning before eating or drinking, have about ¼ tsp of baking soda in a glass of water and drink. Notice if you've burped in the next 2 to 3 minutes (stomach acid and baking soda react to form carbon dioxide gas). If you do NOT, you probably have low stomach acid. Do for 3 or 4 mornings in a row.

    Betaine HCl Challenge Test. Don't do this if you have ulcers. Bacically you buy some Betaine and day 1 start with 1 or 2 600 ml pills. Your goal is to find out how many tablets it takes to feel a warmth or burning in your stomach.  Patients with normal stomach acid levels would feel this with one, or sometimes two pills.  On the first day, take one right before or at the beginning of large meal.  On the second day, take two before or at the beginning of a large meal. On the third day, take three before or at the beginning of a large meal….etc up to the 7th day and 7 tablets, if needed (some versions of this test go up to ten days and 10 tablets). The more tablets you have to take to feel that warmth, the more likely you have low stomach acid. NOTE: if this test produces excess burning in the beginning, it’s a sign you have too much stomach acid and this test should immediately stop. Otherwise, this test is only meant to be used until you feel that burn/warmth, which could happen before the seventh day.”

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  • Posted

    I've been hearing a lot about Gaviscon. It's supposed to help with acid reflux and be safer than PPI's. I'm not sure how it applies to the high vs. low acid debate, however. 
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    • Posted

      Gaviscon does a completely different job to a PPI as a PPI reduces the stomach acid and Gaviscon works by forming a raft (a protective barrier) on top of the stomach contents soon after it has made contact with the stomach acid. The raft acts as a strong physical barrier and helps to keep stomach contents in the stomach where they belong and not in the food pipe where they hurt.

      I have said this many times, if you are worried about safety don't drive or go in a car, that is way more dangerous.

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