Patient Comments: Achalasia - Describe Your Experience

Please describe your experience with achalasia.

Comment from: tiredofthis, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: September 09

I was just diagnosed with achalasia. Like others I have read on here I have lost 25 lb. in 4 months; which I didn't have to lose in the first place. My biggest symptom is the burning in my throat and mouth and chest pain and I am wondering if anyone else has had this. I had been treated for GERD for a year and a half and no medications have helped. The doctor now wants me to have the Botox injection.

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Comment from: Wayne, Male (Patient) Published: July 02

I have been dealing with achalasia since 1996, almost twenty years now and had numerous dilations, a Heller myotomy and I'm at the end stage of the disease. I was faced with the removal of my esophagus 18 months ago but the surgeon repaired another hernia and life goes on with the daily struggle. However I can say I did not want my esophagus removed hoping one day there will be a better method of dealing with this disease. But weight gain is your enemy; your diet is critical and during bad times I drink calorie loaded protein shakes. I'm hoping to delay the removal of my esophagus a few more years but it is very soon as my latest CT scan again shows the amazing drip of barium instead of a normal flow. Throwing up food is so normal, it is just a way to relieve the pain in my chest. I hope all of you continue to improve, I hope they one day provide us all a cure.

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Comment from: Diane, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: April 21

The first symptom of achalasia for me was mucus in my throat and not being able to clear my throat to speak. I had the barium swallow, a gastroscopy and endoscopy. In the past few months I've had trouble swallowing dry foods and most recently sometimes even liquids. I have to drink water to get the food down. The mucus problem has increased also. I will be having surgery.

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Comment from: lizhjohn, 75 or over Female (Patient) Published: March 30

I have had difficulty in swallowing for some time. My gastroenterologist discovered achalasia before I even became aware of it after having an Upper gastrointestinal endoscopy. Once a year they stretch my sphincter ring as I understand, during a yearly endoscopy. I also have GERD, not sure why. I take medicine for GERD but not for the swallowing. I had numerous tests last year, one of which was the Barium swallowing test. I had developed a severe cough that at the time could not be controlled.

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Comment from: Dan, 55-64 Male (Patient) Published: March 16

Sixteen years ago I progressed to a stage where I could not eat a meal, drink liquids without regurgitating them. I would wake up at night coughing due to liquid/food going into my lungs. I could not go out for dinner unless I could find a table near a toilet, when the food and liquid came up I had to move fast to prevent it from being expelled all over the floor. I went to a surgeon who did a barium meal (swallow) and a scope test. He identified it as achalasia. The decision was to use the balloon, which was followed up 3 months later with another expansion. Although I am not a 100 percent cured, I have modified what I eat and how fast I eat. No starchy foods such as bread, potatoes and even chicken. No fizzy drinks. I eat slowly, I used to be one of the first people at the table to finish my meal, now I am always the last. I always have a glass of water at ambient temperature, with each meal. I eat my evening meal early followed by a cup of tea, this seems to aid passing the food through the narrow opening. The top of the bed where my pillow is, is raised by 3 cm. With these changes I have no problem sleeping due to food flowing back up the esophagus.

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Comment from: dreamingofchewing, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: September 17

I am a 44 year old female recently diagnosed with achalasia. I find drinking or swallowing anything including the saliva caused by gums/throat drops/candies worsens and extends the bad situation. Cough drops are great for dry or irritated throat due to short term illnesses, not a stuffed esophagus.

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Patient Comments

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Achalasia - Causes Question: What was the cause of your achalasia?
Achalasia - Symptoms Question: What symptoms did you experience with your achalasia?
Achalasia - Treatment Question: What treatment was effective for your achalasia?

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