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Thread: Esophageal Spasm?

  1. #1
    Senior Member medic1's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    New London, WI USA

    Esophageal Spasm?

    Last year I had this same thing happen. Feels like a knife going through the middle of your chest through to the back. I took tums and rolaids for three days before going to the ER. They did Ultra sound on gallbladder and everything was fine. They gave me a GI cocktail and sent me home with an RX for Prilosec. I took double dose for first 3-4 days before the pain went away. Then finished out the script. When I saw my doctor he told me he didnt think it was indigestion/heartburn but an esophageal spasm. Tonight it has started again. I took a Zantac 75mg, and pain is still there. Is there anything over the counter I can make to copy the GI cocktail? It taste so nasty, but it did help most the pain go away. I cant afford to go back to ER or see my family doctor right now. I can get Prilosec over the counter tomarrow, but was wondering if I could duplicate the GI cocktail to get me through the next couple of days.

  2. #2
    I get this too and its awful but heartburn meds usually relieve it. Did they do an EKG on you in the ER? I'm not a proffessional but I think that if this sort of pain is NOT relieved by antacids, "the malox test" you really should have your heart looked at. Not trying to be alarmist here I just hope you are getting properly cared for.


  3. #3
    Senior Member medic1's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    New London, WI USA
    I have had no luck with the tums or rolaids. I am only 27 so no EKG, I was a paramedic, so I have a little knowledge towards the chest pain stuff, but I can honestly say that if I had no knowledge I would swear it was a heart attack it hurts so bad. Thanks for your thoughts though.

  4. #4
    I dont think you can make a GI cocktail at home. You can get the Maalox but I am not sure you can buy the visous lidocaine or the donnatol and to be honest I have forgotten the formula for it. You definately dont want to ingest too much of the lidocaine or donnatol though.

    I understand the money part too, but I would really try to contact some type of state agency for assistance. Usually you want to rule out any cardiac or lung problem definately even though you are young.

  5. #5

    The GI cocktail can vary from place to place but it is basically Maalox+viscous lidocaine+/- Donnatol. Some people think it helps but there have been randomized studies that show this concoction is no better than plain antacid alone.

    I agree that you should have conditions such as gallbladder (which you did ), kidney stones or ulcers ruled out for GI as well as cardiac problems regardless of your age especially if you have cardiac risk factors which most sCI patients have sedentary lifestyle,etc.

    If this recurs, I would pursue these things iwth your provider.
    Keep us posted.


  6. #6
    Senior Member medic1's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    New London, WI USA

    Unhappy Mylanta vs. Zantac, Prilosec, etc

    After a couple of hours the pain decreased enough last night for me to fall asleep. Only to awake with an awful chest cold. One minute fine the next feeling like less than crap. I woke up this morning about 4 a.m. with another fit of what ever it is indigestion/esphageal spasm, (is there a difference?) I stayed proped up in bed til it passed and was able to get some more sleep. Is it normal to have this even when not having ate? I had a sub around 3 pm which I have had before and was no problem, so it was hours later, and then this morning I hadnt ate anything since that Zantac. I even skipped my regular meds so I wouldnt aggrevate anything. Had my mom drive me to the pharmacy to get a cold medicine recommended by pharmacist, due to meds that I am. I did not start the prilosec yet, going to wait til tomarrow to start it. I took tylenol for fever and headache and tussin DM for chest congestion.

    So, a couple questions. First, is indigestion/eshophageal spasm the same? Second, is in normal to start this far after a meal? Third, would it be better to take the Mylanta vs. taking the prilosec? And Fourth, can someone just put me out of my misery?

  7. #7

    Help for esophageal spasm pain

    I was recently diagnosed with esophageal spasm and suffered 2-3 acute attacks per week (5-10 minutes long). I decided to try to disrupt the actual spasm while it was occuring. I have had success with the following: the moment I feel the beginning of a spasm (usually burning jaw/chest pain) I immediately chug a large glass of room-temperature water. This has been working for me 100% of the time (what a relief!) for the past 3 months. The pain simply dissipates before getting to that unbearable stage. On one occasion I had to chug 3 glasses of water before it worked.
    Hope this helps!

    ps: I have also found that slowing down, chewing carefully and not moving around when I eat has helped to decrease the problem.

  8. #8
    donna c - Thanks for the advice. If it works for you, it may for others out there.

  9. #9

    Esophogeal spasms

    I am a 57 year old female and have had these for at least 30 years. Lately I've been getting them more often, like 3-4 times per week. What I do is either drink something or eat something as soon as they start and it is extremely effective in lessening the pain and shortening the duration.

  10. #10

    Same Problem


    I Went To The Er 3 Months Ago With Severe Chest Spasm..they Gave Me A Gi Cocktail And Sent Me Home Wiht A Prescription For It. And Instructions To Take 2 Zantacs And 1 Prilosec A Day. A Week And Half Ago I Had A Chest Spasm So I Took A Dose Of The Gi Cocktail. It Worked After 45 Minutes.. Now Today My Chest Has Been Hurting So Bad And Not Gone Away.. I Have Taken 1 And Half Dose Of The Gi Cocktail Today And It Hasnt Worked At All.. I Have Achalsia And Had Surgery To Fix My Problem. My Chest Spasms Are So Bad That I Dont Know What To Do Since I Dont Have Medical Anymore.. Anyone Have Any Suggesttions... Thanks


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