Living with Acid Reflux Disease

P1040097 Originally uploaded by acgeal
My little guy has something called GERD or gastro reflux disease. He’s been on meds for his GERD since about 2 weeks of age. He was born 7 weeks early, making him a preemie baby. GERD is a horrible disease that causes flare up acid reflux and very painful symptoms. He also has side symptoms called Sandifer’s Syndrome where he will arch his back and neck to elongate his esophogus to relieve the pain of his acid reflux disease, lip smacking, excessive projectile spitting up, silent reflux (they spit up without spitting it out but instead swallow it back down). If any of you have had a bout of indigestion or heartburn you know what my little guy has and does feel on a daily basis. Since he is a breastfed baby, everything I eat tends to affect him and his digestive abilities. I don’t eat dairy, I drink very little in the way of caffeine, can’t eat wheat\glutin or red sauces or high acidic foods because all of this passes the breastmilk barrier and passes to him.

He takes two medications, one is domperidome and one is rinidadine (or more familiar name, zantac). Unfortunately, both these medications can cause movement disorders like extrapyramidal side effects (EPS) and Tardive Dyskinesia (TD). Both medications are neuroleptics or rather in the neuroleptic class of drugs (particularly the dom). Neuroleptic means in latin “seize the neuron”. Both EPS and TD have several potentially irreversible side effects such as dystonias which are spams of individual muscles or groups of muscles. These spasms can be sustained or intermittent, sudden or slow and painful or painless. They can also affect the vocal cords causing vocal outbursts that can be likened to Torrette’s Syndrome (without the cursing). It can also cause Dyskinesias or hyperkeinetic movements with no purpose and are not fully controllable. Some of these movements can be random, rhythmic and are odd looking and socially stigmatizing. They look very much like Parkinson’s Disease. Abrupt and violent movements of a limb are common in dyskinesias and are accompanied by gyrations of body part, tics and involuntary vocalizations. EPS is a movement side effect that begins in early phases of treatment with neuroleptic drugs. The only way to stop it is to ween the person off of the drugs causing the symptoms with no gaurantee that the side effects are not permanant. These drugs affect the part of the brain that refines and modulates movement. TD happens as late onset of EPS movement side effects. They can appear after months of trouble free treatment with neuroleptic medications.

Bry has displayed a few symptoms of TD with Oral facial tics, random finger movement, limb movement, vocalizations, breathing and swallowing symptoms, resting tremors and paroxysmal (abrupt movements). If you haven’t noticed a lot of these symptoms resemble a stroke as well. His symptoms started with the paroxysmal and resting limb tremors as well as the breathing and swallowing symptoms. I’ve already had to fire one doctor for disagreements on medications and now I will be fighting to ween him from his two medications onto a different medication called Zegerid.

Zegerid was developed specifically for gastro reflux disease in 2004 and is the only FDA approved immediate-release formulation of omeprazole medication for GER\GERD in infants and young children. Omeprazole is a PPI or proton pump inhibitor. It reduces the acid from acid making cells in the stomach, significantly reducing the acidic content of the stomach. PPI’s are the safest and most effective medication for juvinile and infant acid reflux related disorders like GER, GERD and DGE.

If you live with a family member or you are the person living with GERD\GER or DGE here’s a few sites for your parusal that might help you on your journey in the battle against acid reflux disease.


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