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Diagnosed with GERD. Having anxiety, cough. Impact on GERD?

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Practicing since : 1962
Answered : 693 Questions
I was diagnosed with GERD a few years ago. I have bad anxiety. I heard this can make GERD worse and was wondering how? Lately I have been having a lot of pain behind my breasbone and a congested chest feeling with a cough. I have also been bloated. Is this common with my condition? I have been taking Zantac 150mg twice daily, which helps with bloating. Not sure if this could be something more serious...
Posted Thu, 31 Jan 2013 in Digestion and Bowels
Answered by Dr. Charles S Narasi 3 hours later
You tell us that you were diagnosed with GERD few years ago.
I am assuming the diagnosis was made after you had an endoscopic
evaluation and biopsy. I am sure that you were put on medications at
that time. You say that you are taking Zantac 150 mg. twice a day.
The H-2 Blockers are not long lasting and they may lose their effectiveness
after some time. In contrast PPI family of drugs are much more potent
in controlling acid and can heal the esophagus of any ulcers or ersions
much faster and better. If you do take these, you must take them about
an hour or hour and a half bfore your main meals to be effective.
Also, make sure that you are also following dietary measures. Avoid excess
caffeine, citrus , alcohol and tomato products. Smoiking is bad as well.
After discussing with your doctor, you can switch to the PPI. There are
a number of them available over the counter. Prilosec,Prevacid,Aciphex,
Nexium etc. They are all equally effective.
If after 6-8 weeks , your symtoms persist, then you need a repeat exam,
an endoscopy and a re-look.
GERD symptoms can vary. Chronic cough at nights, sore throat, sinus
problems, dental enamel erosion, sleep apnoea ,can all be there.
GERD can aggravate the anxiety and can affect your life style.
If you have constipation associated with bloating , you may have IBS.
(Irritable Bowel Syndrome). If you have not had a sonogram of your
gallbladder, it may be worth getting it to rule out gallstones.
I hope this information helps you.
I wish you well.
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