GERD: Just wanted to know about people... - Asthma UK communi...

Asthma UK community forum

18,417 members22,663 posts

GERD

Logo132 profile image

Just wanted to know about people’s experience with omeprazole. Ive just been prescribed it because I have bad acid and my oesophagus has been damaged due to acid. However, I’ve heard of a connection with GERD and asthma and I have noticed that since I’ve taken the medication, my asthma seems better too. Has anyone else tried it and do you know if it’s safe long term?

30 Replies

It can be taken long-term and yes there's definitely a link with asthma - or there can be. Some people find it sets their asthma off but, for others, the symptoms of GERD actually mimic those experienced in asthma so, for them, it's actually GERD causing the coughing, shortness of breath, etc, and not asthma.

But either way it's great that it's helped!

Logo132 profile image
Logo132 in reply to twinkly29

I’m only on my third day so early days yet but it definitely seems less wheezy. I’ve also bought an air purifier which I have by my bed at night and that’s helping me sleep better too. Thank you for your helpful reply. Do doctors know about this connection because my doctor has never mentioned it and it seems like a lot of people could be helped by this.

MaggieHP profile image
MaggieHP in reply to Logo132

Doctors know the connection exists but as yet the link between the two conditions has not been discovered. I was told by a consultant recently that research into it is ongoing.

Hi there, yes there is a link and ent are fully on to it, it's called LPR and silent reflux, also VCD vocal cord dysfunction. Some doctor are not aware of it but if you are constantly clearing your throat and coughing or are short of breath and inhalers aren't working then maybe worth asking for a referal to ent.

Yes, I know about LPR - I ended up seeing an ENT specialist in this year about it though actually I’ve been aware of silent reflux for a while. The problem I have is that I am also under gastro cons care and my current consultant (who came out of retirement to help out during the covid crisis and whose list I was moved to during that time because it was felt my issues could be managed “at distance”) is not so convinced. Sigh! Things have actually improved since I’ve come off the acid suppressants (not surprising I suppose if I what I have is non acid reflux). The reflux and discomfort are still on going but I’m currently managing it through diet and Gaviscon Advance. I was referred to ENT when I developed issues with my larynx (an awful feeling of pressure sometimes being applied to it - not pleasant). Upon reading my notes he reckoned I had LPR but reckoned the problem with my larynx had been compounded by excessive amounts of mucous resulting from allergic/non allergic rhinitis. I was discovered to still be producing a lot of that upon examination, despite the fact that I was using Avamys nasal spray.

As I said it’s known there is a connection between the two; that’s been known for a while. The problem is that how the link works and what triggers it is not understood yet. That is where the research is ongoing.

Dr Jamie koufman wrote a book called the acid watchers diet, the best book I ever bought.

I have that book too. It’s an eye opener as to what foods increase acid and to be avoided, at least until the healing phase is complete. I have completely changed what I eat, when I eat them and how much I eat. I am prescribed omeprazole and have been for a few years but I don’t take it very often these days as the changes I’ve made have helped a lot.

Yes it's a amazing book, has helped me so much, I got fed up with being told by doctors just take the ppi's and see you how you feel. Them things are so bad in the long run. It's gave me a much greater understanding of food and generally feel much better from the life style changes. Iv also explored intermittent fasting, that's another good one

Yes. I sometimes don’t eat breakfast or lunch. If I’m hungry I do but if I’m not I wait until I am hungry. It gives chance for your body to use what’s already there rather than putting more in which causes reflux. I don’t have any dairy as that was a huge trigger for me never mind how cruel the dairy industry is! Lots of veg and some fruit. Seems to work well, for me anyway!

Yeah that's it, it's about finding what works best, I found all the usual suspects were a trigger, tea, chocolate, tomatoes. I went on to use almond milk which was amazing, intermittent fasting has been amazing for reflux, hard to do at first but the body definitely gets use to it

The thing that I find weird is that foods those with acid reflux are recommended to avoid are also foods I have to be careful of, even though 24hr pH monitoring came back with a result that showed that any reflux that was occurring had acidity levels on the low side of normal. I suppose it’s just possible that the effects of the acid suppressing medication I had been on (cimetidine) had not had sufficient time to normalise, but if that’s the case the fault is with the test and the instructions given because I followed what was recommended to the letter. After I finally came off the cimetidine things were rather unpredictable for a while (not unexpected). I’m currently avoiding foods with a pH value of less than 5 and things aren’t bad at all. One of the biggest triggers for issues though comes with drinking water. All I drink is cold water or hot milky water (think a milky tea but without the tea content). The hot milky water never causes an issue: the cold (or even room temperature) water can - and often does if drunk without anything to offset it. It’s a major problem for me. I’m supposed to down in excess of 2 litres of fluids a day because of another medical issue, and on some days that’s hard to achieve. I don’t suppose the Acid Watchers diet says anything about that does it?

Hi there Maggie, yeah the book explains it all, you got a lot of people swear by Apple cider vinegar, but with silent reflux and lpr, you got to try not to activate the pepsin that's in your throat or near your airways and then hopefully heal what damage over time that the acid has done

Pepsin reflux was mentioned by the ENT specialist. I did ask the gastro cons if there was a test to identify if that was happening; he said no.

I recon there is a test that can test for the presence of pepsin, I'm sure iv heard someone say that befor

Pep test, just looked it up

Yup - I had read of pepsin tests at the time I asked him but given that the consultation was done over the phone arguing with him wasn’t so easy.

I admit I’m getting to the stage of requesting that I get put back on the list of the consultant I was with prior to covid. He listed reflux disease as his area of interest. The area of interest of my current consultant (before he retired) was the

Iiver.

Yeah doctors and consultants are frustrating sometimes but thank God for sights like these where we can get tips from others going through the same things

I thought the acid watchers diet was written by Dr Jonathan Aviv _ confused!

100% your right, I got confused, Dr koufman has written a few other great books about reflux and does videos on you tube, very similar teachings as Dr Aviv, brilliant book, have you read it

Hi Graham No I haven't read it but all information is good to have

Doctors and consultants should be giving out more extensive advice about this condition would save a lot of stress time and money long term

twinkly29 profile image
twinkly29 in reply to Logo132

In addition to Maggie's reply, whether they make connection is another matter! Often any breathing symptom (cough, wheeze shortness of breath, tightness) is labelled as asthma when often those symptoms are caused by other things.

Where it's a trigger for asthma (so makes asthma worse or sets it off as opposed to having similar symptoms but being something else), it's also a lottery as to whether they make the connection - but actually also asthma is very trial and error anyway so the connections can be made because a medication helps the symptoms.

MaggieHP profile image
MaggieHP in reply to twinkly29

And even if they make connection it’s still a bit of a minefield. After thirteen years of issues on an off (and even during “off” phases I still have to be careful with diet) they still haven’t worked out exactly what is going on with me and I don’t suppose for a moment I’m the only one in this predicament. Basically I now have four medical conditions: asthma, allergic (and possibly non allergic) rhinitis, hypermobility spectrum disorder, and reflux (previously thought to be acid reflux, now considered to be non acid reflux). Hmmm. As I said to a respiratory cons recently: think of it as trying to untangle four different colours of yarn, some (or indeed all) of which may or may not be connected in some way.

MaggieHP profile image
MaggieHP in reply to twinkly29

And I agree, a medication helping where another does not is often the biggest give away. If a bout of breathing difficulties/coughing which feels just like asthma but is not responding to asthma meds then is calmed down by Gaviscon Advance the chances are very high the cause is to do with reflux.

I have acid reflux and was diagnosed over 3 years ago. I take ompraloze (20mg) twice a day and have modified my diet.

Hi Logo132It works for me, I’ve being using it for about 2 years, and found it helped tremendously.

Bernardine

I was diagnosed with a hiatus hernia years ago and that's when my GERD began. I was taking copious amounts of Gaviscon and in the end I started sleeping with my bed raised, changed my eating habits and what I ate. I've been so lucky to have been able to sort the worst of it out but if I eat too late or too much I get a flare up. Subsequent endoscopies haven't shown any oesophagal damage.

My main concern with antacids is the affects in the stomach's ability to absorb protein and therefore vit B12. As I have anaemia that was a huge consideration for me.

MaggieHP profile image
MaggieHP in reply to Poobah

Eating too much is a major trigger for me as well and I don’t eat big portions and I’m very careful to avoid eating anything too late. The big problem I have is that my weight hasn’t been great for years (BMI which hovers around 20 but is often sub that). GPs and consultants alike get twitchy if my weight levels start to drop.

Good morning I was on 2 PPI per day Esomeprazole 20mg x2 for Gerd. Also have Barrett’s disease due to GERD, a hiatus hernia and asthma (for 45 years) on the PPI’s a 3 years Developed severe anaemia due to no acid in tummy ( now ferritin levels up from 3 to 40) After I Had a repair to my hiatus Hernia (they found most of my tummy had moved into my chests area) I am a new person now. Really realy can’t believe the difference in my health. My peak flow was 100 best 200. Now 450 it feels miraculous Walking miles every day now. It’s 5 months since the surgery And getting stronger and stronger 😇😇

MaggieHP profile image
MaggieHP in reply to Lynkeogh

I’ve often wondered whether I have a small hiatus hernia. But you would have thought that after three gastroscopies and 24hr pH monitoring they would have found it if one was there. I do gather though that they can come and go and if small can be difficult to spot. But it wouldn’t surprise me if one was there; I have hernia history.

I started taking Omeprazole yesterday after similar symptoms to yourself. Slept well last night with no reflux so am hoping I get the same positive results as you've had re asthma! 🙏

You may also like...