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Thursday, March 21, 2013

Follow Up with my Regular GI Doctor

Here's what's interesting about doctors, they always have conflicting opinions. The GI doctor read the notes of the Mayo Doctor right in front of me and he mentioned to me that he disagreed and didn't think the NISSEN SURGERY would help me at all. He said that I've been on acid reflux medication for years. The only way this stomach surgery would work, in his words,

If you came to me saying that you had acid reflux and the medicine worked for you but you were tired of taking pills, then I'd do the surgery. But, as of now, you only have a 10 to 20% chance of it working. You need to come back to me before they do any kind of surgery on you because it's not going to work.

I trust him and trust his judgement. Instead, he wants me to follow up with Mayo, have some blood work done (because my lipase levels have been really high), and come back to him to talk about what to do next. He suggested a procedure called ESOPHAGEAL MANOMETRY. Basically, it's a procedure that involves a tube going into your nose and into your stomach for 24 hours. It tests the vomiting to determine if it is stomach acid or actual vomit.

However, his opinion seems to be that my lower bowels are paralyzed or have lack of motility, not my stomach itself. I'm starting to think that too - but nothing seems to go down. Everything seems to come back up. However, my belly was really swollen when I saw him today. On the scale it looked like I had gained weight because my stomach is so bloated, it looks like I'm carrying around a watermelon. I haven't eaten hardly anything but I have been drinking a lot of water. He noticed the bloating too because I am usually lighter on the scale and my face has thinned out.

If you look at pictures of me from last year or the year before compared to now, my face has really thinned out. I've lost a pants size.

He called in stronger anti-nausea medicine for me. I hope that will bring me some relief. This past week has been horrible but I remain optimistic. Something good has to come from all of this. That's going to be my advice for the day:

Be your own advocate. Research things and don't always do whatever the doctor tells you. But, hang on to hope because it's there. Someone will figure this out - and when they do, we're going to throw one hell of a party! =)

1 comment:

Nicole said...

The test you're actually referring to is a pH probe. Manometry is done to diagnose swallowing issues and it only takes 30 minutes. I've had the pH probe done numerous times and it's freaking awful. Uncomfortable as hell. I've also had the Nissen done, 3x actually. I was a kid though when they did it. I've had GP my entire life and only recently did I realize exactly how bad it is. I see my gastro this week and I guess we're going to discuss my options. I know medication won't work for me because my stomach is so slow, so I'm guessing it's going to be a surgery talk.