Oesophageal Patients Association

Post op 16 months. Alan occasionally feels as if there’s something in his throat first thing in the morning when he has his first coffee

Does anyone else experience this (see heading)? Like most people we worry about every little discomfort. I’d obviously like to know that what he’s experiencing is all part of the healing process. No other symptoms. He gets a bit of reflux if he doesn’t stay propped up all night. He eats small meals but usually 4 a day. The anxiety is probably worse than anything.

I’d be grateful to hear from anyone who has experienced similar.

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I had my operation in Aug 2017 & I get this too, not just during the day.mi have spoken to my consultant & because it is occasional & not always, they have said it’s best I continue as I am & not get a stretch. I can only think it’s because my throat is dry & the scaring has tightened during the night. Try sipping water during the night & drinking lots during the day. I find it hard but it is helping.

Hope it improves,

Z

Xx

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Thankyou for taking time to reply Zantri. This site is a God send really. Just hearing from someone else can keep me sane!

Keep up the good work!

Alison :-)

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Me too. And I'm 5 years post op. It's very much a transient thing though - just the first sip of water or tea first thing in the morning. If that's taken carefully the next sip is fine. So I would think its not scarring issues with otherwise it would last rather longer. Obviously I've mentioned this to my specialist nurse but they seem to think everything is OK. Its not getting any worse so I've just put down to one of those minor things that have to be lived with post op. But suggest you contact your nurse or consultant just in case: things are different for everyone.

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Thanks for your reply. It’s always comforting to hear positive opinions. We did actually see the consultant on Monday morning (6 month) check, and all was good. He reckoned it is just the affected area having to start working again after 8 hours sleeping. 🙃🙂

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I wonder if it is a reaction to reflux in the night? Try taking Gaviscon Advance at night and see if that makes a difference?

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There are all sorts of twinges and odd feelings that you get over the months after this surgery, and most of them are just the system settling down after all the changes that have been made. It does take time to regain confidence in one's body and the odd feelings we get become part of life. It is perfectly natural to start worrying that it might be a sign of recurring cancer, but it does not sound like it from what you have described.

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Thank you Alan. My Alan had his 6 month check up last week and was told that what he’s feeling is normal. Thankyou for taking the time to respond. :-)

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I have this every morning - until I have a sip of liquid I can't even burp as something down there appears to be welded shut.

My theory is that since the re-built eosophagus is comprised of stomach tissue, which does not possess the normal mucus secretion function that originally lubricated the former surfaces, then during the night these have adhered together. This drying-out is exacerbated by sleeping sitting up which promotes mouth breathing.

If it is of any comfort I have been experiencing this since my op 26 years ago.

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Thankyou for taking the time to reply. Alan had his 6 month check up last week and was told that this issue is absolutely normal. :-)

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That sounds eminently logical!

Alan

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Hi Alison

Had my op some time ago but still get that feeling of something stuck in the oesophagus at times. Have a chat with your consultant/CNS first, they are likely to check that the cancer has not come back or that there is no problem scar tissue - most unlikely scenario - and they might check to see if there is still have some motility in the oesphagus and that is working properly.

Then experiment with what you are eating. Some foods such as breads and meats can be 'sticky' and difficult to swallow. Your stomach (or remains of) still produces acid and sometimes certain foods initiate more acid than normal - a chat with the GP should determine what appropriate level of PPI Alan is on. Even anxiety can produce an increase in acid, which can produce gas which gives you that 'something stuck' feeling. There are various diets around that try to improve digestion and reflux.

Finally, the old OTC medicines such as Rennies and Gaviscon have always worked wonders and peppermint oil and teas are natural fixes which aid digestion.

It's a long process but with trial and error you can both determine what's best for Alan.

Hope this is useful

PS Keeping propped upright at night and grazing def helps.

PPS As a massive coffee drinker myself I have been told to avoid coffee as that is an irritant (but can't :) )

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I'm 16 month post "IL" and mornings are difficult. I used to have a cup of Tea but cut it out after realising it was making me feel bad, I now leave Tea till later and drink Oatley instead, which also has more calories than Tea or Coffee, but I still feel pretty bad in the morning for about an hour. I also sometimes get the stuck in throat feeling but just took that as part and parcel of the op.

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