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Dr. Andrew Rynne

Family Physician

Exp 18 years

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What causes acid reflux after eating starch foods?

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Answered by

Practicing since : 2006
Answered : 2227 Questions
II have an extreme case of gerd
I take 40 mg of Prilosec a day and have been on it for 15 years

my question is
Ocassionally when I eat certain trigger foods that are particulary greasy or starchy it causes a reflux episode in the middle of the night.

This is no ordinary reflux episode. This hurts a lot, extremely a lot, When I feel this pain I honest to god would rather be dead.

Key foods that cause this are potato chips and snacks like soft chewy cookies
I cant even eat one cookie without this happening. and they will occur even if I eat the cookie o chips in the morning. Its like I signed my fate to suffer the episode later.

The episode occurs like this. I wake up in the middle of the night with an extreme sense of terror and confusion and panic. I feel like i'm going to die.
I sit up and after a few mins I feel a pressure / burning sensation in my lungs.
It gets hotter and hotter and i'm eventually using all my strength to cough

I cough out something that looks bright orange like a highlighter. I don't know if it comes from my lungs or if i'm coughing so hard that its coming from my stomach. Nothing seems to take away the pain not antacids not more Prilosec. Sometimes if I eat bread it helps it seems to soak up the stomach fluids but during the episode I generally eat the bread and vomit it back out (soaked in fluids). milk also seems to help with the bread.

episode lasts about 45 mins after which. generally for the next 10 days after I have bronchitis or perhaps pneumonia like symptoms. phlem and such is coughed out as if I have a cold (no other symptoms)

These episodes only occur after laying down for the night I don't necessarily have to be asleep
Ive never had any surgeries (at all)

Ive yet to find a doctor that's heard of this or that's given me advice other then take my meds and raise my bed height at the head. which don't help.

In the past I have lost a tremendious amount of weight from 350 to 240 and then back to 350 again. when I lost the weight the episodes don't come back however I always have the gerd regardless of weight.

what I want to know is if these episodes have a medical name and if any stomach doctor has ever heard of them. perhaps other suggestions to prevent them from happening
Mon, 18 Aug 2014 in Digestion and Bowels
Answered by Dr. Klerida Shehu 32 hours later
Brief Answer:
Surgery to be considered...

Detailed Answer:

I am sorry for the situation you are in.

Your symptoms are typical signs for GERD attack. As you have tried Prisolec for over 15 years, I recommend to:
- repeat upper endoscopy if the last one was over 1 years ago for further evaluation and to exclude tracheal-esophageal perforations
- increase dose of Prisolec to 80 mg or 160 mg
- start taking ranitidine 300 mg at bedtime
- use antacids up to 5 times/day

As the medical therapy did not succeed (you have tremendous attacks at night), should consult with surgeon to think over surgical procedure.

Hope it helped!
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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