Barrett's Oesophagus
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Message Icon Event: Newly diagnosed Barrett’s. - Event Date: 23 Jul 2018 Post Reply Post New Topic
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Phoebe44
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Quote Phoebe44 Replybullet Calendar Event: Newly diagnosed Barrett’s.
    Posted: 23 Jul 2018 at 1:45am
Hi I am very new to this forum, and just wanted some advice/ thoughts on my current situation. So I received my confirmed Barrett’s diagnosis 2 weeks ago. I simply received a letter in the post. There was no follow up appointment to discuss any forward planning or advice on how to manage it, considering this is all very new to me as I’m sure it is for anyone else how is ever diagnosed! My main source of info is from the internet which to be honest scares the poop out of me! I have been to my gp who to be honest makes me feel as tho I’m being dramatic! I Have never really experienced the typical symptoms of acid reflux only after my endoscopy! My dr gave me omeprazole 20mg which didn’t help it got so bad that I was prescribed the maximum dose of pantoprazole and all still get acid occasionally! I feel like I’m a bit lost not sure which way to turn now! Does anyone have any suggestions of what to do now?
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chrisrob
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Quote chrisrob Replybullet Posted: 23 Jul 2018 at 9:01am
Hi Pheobe and welcome to the forum,

Unfortunately, Barrett's is actually quite a common ailment and one about which which many GPs are ill informed.

Barrett's forms as a protection by the body to defend itself against attack from acid. Think of it like armour plating. However, it is important to know as, in a very small number of cases, it can mutate to cancer.
The good news is, you have been diagnosed with the condition and will now receive medication that may reduce that risk and regular surveillance scopes every few years to look for any indications of that possible progression whence it can be removed by ablation therapy.

Firstly, there is far too much rubbish and scaremongering on the internet, so you'll need to be selective as to what you read. The Barrett's UK directory site, www.Barretts.org.uk, has links to all the support groups that are slowly building around the country and links to all the relevant and reliable sources of information.

Barrett's forms as a consequence of reflux from the stomach into the oesophagus of acid and bile as described in "Put Simply" here. For some reason we don't fully understand, 40% of those of us who develop Barrett's do not feel the acid reflux that contributed to it.

Acid reflux is one of the most common complaints met by GPs. The standard procedure is to prescribe a PPI (= "Proton Pump Inhibitor") of which there are many: omeprazole, lansoprazole, pantoprazole etc, all as good as each other when taken in equivalent dose. (See this chart.)

PPIs reduce the acid but not the reflux: they just make it less corrosive.
You will also need to reduce the reflux, through lifestyle (ie lose weight if applicable, eat small meals - little and often, leave at least 3 hours between your last meal and going to bed, etc).

We produce a comprehensive encyclopaedia,
Down With Acid with everything you need to know about acid, reflux, complications and management thereof. Apart from its website, it is also available as a 120 page full colour printed book. If you message or email me (chris@chrisrob.co.uk) with a postal address, I'll be happy to send you one. We make no charge but welcome a donation. (All the copies we are currently giving away were paid for by recipients of earlier printings who felt it was worth making a donation for.)

Meanwhile, do contact us with any questions.

All the best
Chris
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Phoebe44
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Quote Phoebe44 Replybullet Posted: 28 Jul 2018 at 10:13pm
Hi Chris Thankyou so much for your response, the info you gave was amazing. I will email as I would really like one if the books you mentioned because at the moment I’m desperate to feel well again and feel I need as much info as possible. Thanks again for taking the time to reply. Kind regards phoebe xx
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CliveB
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Quote CliveB Replybullet Posted: 06 Aug 2018 at 9:56am
Just been diagnosed with BO, my GP has put me on Omeprazole. The indigestion and heartburn have gone but I still have problems with sore throat and slimy mucus in throat. Any suggestions on how to mitigate these symptoms. Apologies if this topic has been covered elsewhere but new to the forum
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chrisrob
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Quote chrisrob Replybullet Posted: 10 Aug 2018 at 1:47pm
Hi Clive,

The sore throat and mucous are probably symptoms of the reflux. The omeprazole reduces the acid but does little for reflux which is just less erosive.

There is no easy answer. The Down With Acid encyclopaedia has a comprehensive section dealing with reflux but it is best if you can mange it with lifestyle.

I personally find the Hall's Soothers (49p in Superdrug, in various flavours) quite useful. I suck one of those and it just sufficiently numbs the back of my mouth and throat.
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