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Is the onset of symptoms of esophageal cancer very fast? Back pain, no appetite. History of GERD and hiatal hernia

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Practicing since : 2002
Answered : 2397 Questions

Are you a cancer doctor?

I have a question involving something totally different. Is espoheagaul cancer symptoms very fast at onset or is that something you notice over time? I always think the worse as you can see. The last two days I have had not appetite and when I eat the food just feels as if it sits in my throat. I also have a burning pain in my back between my shoulder blades. I do not have any discomfort in swallowing nor does it hurt.

In 2006 I had an upper GI with biopsys and nothing was found. At that time I was diagnosed with GERD and a Hiatus hernia.

Not sure if something has caused an abundance of acid or what
Posted Mon, 21 May 2012 in Digestion and Bowels
Answered by Dr. Robert Galamaga 15 hours later
Hello and thanks for the query.

I do have training in oncology or cancer medicine.

Esophageal cancer is relatively rare. Symptoms are not usually rapid in progression but occur rather with a gradual pattern and course over a number of years in many cases.

I am most suspicious that your current symptoms are due to inflammation of the esophagus and stomach. I think it would be advisable to start a regimen of omeprazole 20 mg over the counter twice daily for 10 days and then once daily for 4 weeks and then reassess your symptoms.

If you still have symptoms beyond that point it may be a good idea to visit with a gastroenterologist for consideration of an upper endoscopy once again. It may be that you need to be on the acid suppressing medication for a long term.

Let me reassure you that I do not think this is esophageal cancer. Try implementing my suggestions and then reassess in a month or so. I am always available if you have any additional concerns as well.

Thanks again for the query. I hope you find this to be an informative exchange.

I wish you all the best.


Dr. Galamaga
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