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Oesophageal Patients Association
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Very worried - any advice please?

I am very concerned that my throat issues could be throat, windpipe or esophageal cancer.

My symptoms started mid January after I stopped smoking. Coughing, raw feeling in throat, sore swallowing with saliva, sizzling feeling behind my throat. My doctor sent me for a chest xray which was normal & camera into my nose down my throat (privately) which showed inflammation of the throat & lyranx, my GP refused to refer me to ENT as they believe I have LPR. The ENT dr said I should continue with my PPI's, I have been put onto PPI's for 2 months, I am currently going into my 3rd week of them however the pain, discomfort & anxiety is still there more so today, my whole throat pains & feels raw when I swallow! My throat also feels like it is sticking together, dry & drinking liquids & food is fine. I wheeze too since all of this has started

For the last 6 weeks my swallowing saliva on the right of my throat is the worst, feels like a cut in my throat. I have also had loads of blood work which all came back normal with no weight loss but weight gain.

My thoughts are that what if I have a tumor in my gullet and/or stomach which is causing this reflux as the PPI's are clearly not working? Can someone advise me further please? My dGP will think I am mad going back for the 11th time with the same issue that will not resolve!!!

I am extremely scared I have cancer of the digestive system now!

I am a 35 year old female, ex smoker (smoked for 14 years, about 10 a day), very moderate drinker (only drink when I go out) but I am overweight!

Any advice as I now want to go for a private endoscopy.... 

6 Replies

Never mind about your GP thinking you're mad. Go on making a fuss until you get referred to a specialist. Use the "anything to get her off my back" tactic - you have to resort to this with phone and energy suppliers don't you? Good luck!




PPI medication like Omeprazole does take a while to work properly, but the dose may need to be adjusted.   Laryngo-pharyngeal reflux is something to be investigated, and it is normal to be referred after a period when PPIs have been tried without resolving the problem.   So it is prudent to return to your doctor for a review and to ask for a referral to a specialist.

Meanwhile you could try taking Gaviscon with your other medication (ask the pharmacist if in doubt) because this works differently.   It is an alginate that temporarily creates a protective raft against the reflux (which could be acid, or alkali in the form of bile possibly).   Something is upsetting your throat and the underlying cause needs to be diagnosed.

Congratulations on stopping smoking, by the way.   You have done the right thing.

Prolonged exposure to reflux can eventually cause cancer, but it does sound as if the reflux itself might be caused by something else (eg like a stomach ulcer or a number of other things perhaps).

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Thanks for your in depth response. 

I find it strange that the wheezing comes and goes too. My throat does have extreme pain its just and uncomfortable feeling, its in the right side of my throat for which the ent specialist looked at and said there is nothing there but im wondering if its the top part of my esophugus. Feels like i have something stitched to the right side of my throat. Ent said i have globus too.  

The right sided discomfort did not start immediately in january infact it all started when my chest xray came back normal and then i started coughing again and then i suspected throat cancer after researching my symptoms got worse including reflux which i could feel come up to my voicebox so i know i have or had reflux. 

I will return to my GP and ask what do we do now and continue to ask the same questions. I just fear i have cancer of the gullet now and its freaking me out somewhat! 


I agree that you need the ENT angle checked. If it is LPR, why did the symptoms only start when you stopped smoking? Of course you might also have a virus or bacterial infection of the throat and larynx, which you are having trouble shaking off (and there have been some nasty infections around this year).


It might be helpful to write out a timeline of the various things that have happened and how you have been feeling so that you can give a full succinct account to the GP and help them work out the next steps.

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