Barrett's Oesophagus
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BooBoo
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Quote BooBoo Replybullet Topic: Barratts & Cancer
    Posted: 17áMará2010 at 8:49am
I am a 42 year old female recently diagnosed with Barratts. I don't know much about it, I haven't got to go for another endoscopy until 3 years time. I am taking 40mg of omeprazole but these don't seem to help much. I was wondering if a Fundoplication would help, I also have a Hiatus Hernia. My Father passed away at the age of 53 with oesophageal cancer we don't know whether he had Barratt's. My GP says I'm at no higher risk at developing cancer, but I'm not so sure, he admitted he knows very little about Barratts. Any advice would be great THANKS
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chrisrob
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Quote chrisrob Replybullet Posted: 17áMará2010 at 5:16pm
Hello BooBoo and welcome.

Glad you've found us but sorry to hear you are suffering. And sorry to hear of the loss of your dad.(My Dad died in his mid 50's,too.)

There is good news and bad news.

Firstly most GP's have little knowledge of the condition.
Those of us with Barrett's are considerably more likely to develop oesophageal adenocarcinoma (cancer of the gullet) than others (In one study I saw, they suggested 70 times more likely!)

The good news is, you are unlikely to develop cancer. The proportion that do go on to develop the cancer is less than 1% each year.

You are lucky because they know you have Barrett's and you will receive regular surveillance to look for the tell-tale pre-cancerous indicators: low grade, then high grade dysplasia. If high grade dysplasia is indicated, treatment will be offered. (Probably ablation therapy to
remove the Barrett's cells.)
Endoscopic examination is usually carried out every three years. Dysplasic changes are usually slow enough to make more frequent scoping (and their attendant risks) unnecessary. If there is doubt, scoping will be more frequent.

It is those people who have Barrett's but don't know it who are most at risk.

40mg of omeprazole is a high maintenance level but it can be higher if necessary. (I went up to 80mg: 40 am and 40 pm.) If they are not sufficient and you still suffer from acid, you could try taking Ranitidine at bedtime (assuming you're taking your omeprazole in the morning) and, of course, there's always Gaviscon.

Your Barrett's has developed because of the acid refluxing into your oesophagus.

The omeprazole reduces the acid but not the reflux.
Fundoplication removes the reflux but not the acid.
Neither cures Barrett's.
However by removing the environment wherein the Barrett's developed, they reduce the chances of Barrett's developing further.

The fundoplication operation isn't usually offered if the drugs are effective as there's always a risk with any surgery. In my case, I had the operation last year and haven't needed any drugs since. It was definitely the right way to go for me.

I hope this has helped. I am not a doctor and can only offer advice and help based on my own experiences but if you have any questions, please ask. If I don't know the answer, there's probably someone here does.

All the best

Chris
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jcombs99
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Quote jcombs99 Replybullet Posted: 17áMará2010 at 11:59pm
Boo Boo

   Your GP should send you to a GI because he admited he doesn't know anything about barrettes and I agree .If my Dad died of EC I would very worried like you should be .My 2 brothers have barrettes like me but I haloed it and it's gone for now .
   If you have NO DYSPLASIA you have time to deal with this .You have to get the ACID under control by pills,IF thats what causeing it . TELL your doctor if they don't work and he will change them . You can't stop REFLUX (acid, ect. ect.) without a FUNDO ( it makes you normal ) but maybe you can stop the acid with pills ..BUT you must also help , change your diet so you get less heartburn .

    Your Dad died of EC so make sure you get scoped EVERY year like they do in the US.


I GET SCOPE EVERY 3 MONTHS AND HAD HGD (ABLATED, HALO) AND A FUNDO .I"M NORMAL FOR NOW . DONT LET ANYONE TELL YOU THIS ISN"T A BIG DEAL BECAUSE IT IS .IF I HAD DONE WHAT MY FIRST 2 DOCTORS TOLD ME TO DO I'LL BE DEAD NOW .

FUNDO, HGD, JEFF

Edited by jcombs99 - 18áMará2010 at 12:31am
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BooBoo
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Quote BooBoo Replybullet Posted: 18áMará2010 at 9:01am
Thanks chrisrob, this has helped a lot. I take 20mg am and 20mg pm of  omeprazole and GP said it's the highest dose I can have.Sometimes even a glass of cold water can leave me in agony. When I tell him this he makes me feel like a hypocondriac (excuse the spelling). Thanks again
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BooBoo
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Quote BooBoo Replybullet Posted: 18áMará2010 at 9:05am
Thanks icombs99. Good advice. It doesn't seem to matter what I eat even a lettuce leaf or cold glass of water can leave me in agony. GP thinks I'm just an attention seeker that's how he makes me feel anyway. Thanks again
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