Oesophageal Patients Association
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'DUMPING'

I am now 9 months post-Ivor Lewis procedure. The occasions of retching seem to be lessening, but I just can't seem to get on top of the 'dumping'.

I've read all the likely causes (e.g. intake of too much sugar) and try to avoid them, but just can't seem to stop it happening.

Has anyone out there found a 'miracle' cure or at least a way to prevent them happening.

Once more I would be really grateful for any help.

7 Replies
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There is no "miracle" cure here. But there are steps than can make life more bearable, and bring the 'dumping' under control. It is important to break the dumping down into the parts that make up the whole.

Early dumping - 15 mins after eating

Late Dumping - 1.5 hours after eating

Hypoglycemia - To much sugar in one go.

Food/drink Intolerance

You have to start by keeping a strict and honest food diary. THis includes times of eating/drinking and "exactly" what you consumed. This is the key to understanding all of the above. But you have to honest. One chocolate biscuit is still food intake, no matter how small it seems ;^)

Regards

Bruce

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Hi Johrene, sorry you are having such a bad time. My husband had terrible dumping syndrome and the best three scenarios to help were;

1: the obvious avoiding as munch high sugar / fat items, so that included cream not too much cheese, chocolate bars, fizzy drinks (although tinned shandy worked well and became a favoured drink, the Fanta range of drinks were better than many others. The bottles were also better because he could sip a little and replace the lid). He also found sucking boiled sweets on and off helped, maybe because it is because the body can take it slower? - also a piece of dark chocolate was much better, just a square at a time not a whole bar.

2: Changing the bread to a seeded variety seemed to help drastically and for someone that would only eat white bread, it was a difficult change, but soon became the only type he could manage.

3: Portion control. This was his hardest. Originally he would easily eat 4 rounds of toast and a tin of beans (plus other stuff!). It took probably two years for us to both to work this out properly. The main changes were to purchase the small loaves of bread instead of the normal ones and to purchase a new plate. Because he had to have lots of gravy with everything following the surgery I bought the Denby dark blue range of side plate. These are perfect as they have a lovely rim to hold gravy easier than a normal side plate. I really struggled to give him less food, but using the smaller plate made a vast difference. He much preferred this, and would eat less than my two year old, as soon as he ate too much, dumping would hit him again.

He would still get dumping syndrome, but he rarely ate if we were about to leave, or when we were out as it would literally cripple him for hours at a time. I hope some of this is useful you and wishing you good health for the future. Take care Carrie

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Hi there eating and drinking together is a no no. Just sip water if you have to have something to drink with a meal. Too much sugar or too much fat does it for me. I cannot eat yogurt, ice cream or full fat anything. Unable to have milky coffee, unfortunately sometimes a cup of tea can cause it. I keep Dextrose tablets on me and a banana. Dextrose is good when you get faint feeling or blurry eyes and has a quick effect on the symptoms. I get mine in boots.

Good Luck

Debbie

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Hi

As Npride said, too much food at once is a big no no and will cause dumping. So much smaller portions lots of times a day works well. I get dumping if I eat and race around after eating as this makes the food travel through my system much faster and the wrong food in the wrong place in the gut stimulates it to pull water in and then back discharge it back into the blood causing insulin production and low sugar. I found I got into cycles of dumping and have got some tablets Arcabose from my doctor which slow down the absorption of carbs. I have found they help calm things down and I have periods of no dumping until I get out of rhythm again. Fat also slows down the absorption of sugar. I always carry dextrose with me and as soon as I get that foggy feeling I take dextrose tablets , often nearly a packet which brings things back to normal. Dumping never goes away but you learn to deal with it better as time goes by.

Lizzy

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Many thanks to you all for taking the time to reply. It would appear to always be the 'early dumping' syndrome that seems to be my problem. My wife used to keep a food diary for the first few months but we have stopped keeping it recently. I agree it would be a good idea to start it up again to see if we can find the cause of the new pattern.

As before, I always find it so reassuring that I am not the only one experiencing these systems, so thanks again.

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The main cause of dumping for me is hot food or drink. I find just a few sips of hot tea or a few mouthfuls of hot food make me dump. It's a pity, because a lot of food doesn't taste half as good when it's nearly cold, but that's better than dumping.

I haven't seen many people mention heat as a cause, perhaps it's just me, but it would be worth seeing if avoiding hot food works for you.

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Thanks for your comments. I have not had too much trouble with hot FOOD, but look out if I dare to try to have a cup of tea or coffee. It has caused both retching and dumping.

I would love to hear a technical explanation as to why. I do so miss my cup of tea.

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