GI experts, help me out here

In the last year, I’ve tried to avoid over-analyzing all the random symptoms I have, and just focused on diet/lifestyle/exercise/sleep. But in the last week I developed really strong heartburn, to the point where I felt chest pressure and felt that interfered with breathing. It’s bothersome enough that I have to see a doctor about it.

I’ll probably see some kind of GI specialist, but because I have strange constellation of issues, I suspect they’ll just me a PPI/H2 inhibitor and show me the door. If anyone here could point me towards some tests I should ask for, or a possible theory of what’s going on, that would be huge for me.


  • Until the heartburn started, I never “felt” my stomach. I could eat a pile of garbage and have no sensation. Perhaps I’ve always had heartburn, but only now I’ve improved enough to feel it?
  • Takes me a long time to feel hunger, if I feel it at all. I also don’t really feel satiety. (Similar to this post)
  • Recent stool tests show no parasites, no SIBO, no inflammation, but it did show malabsorption of fats and carbs.
  • Large, pale stools with undigested particles. I’ve also noticed fat in stools.
  • After eating, I feel cold instead of nourished. (I used to feel brainfogged after eating, but that’s gotten better).
  • Hard to gain weight – if I’m not careful, I gradually just lose weight over time.
  • Globus sensation – a feeling of muscle tightness and discomfort in the throat.
  • I get hoarse quickly, it’s hard to raise and project my voice.
  • Chronic sinusitis / always stuffy nose for about two years now.

High calorie, very little gluten and diary (if at all), no processed food or added sugars. In a typical day, I would eat

  • Breakfast: Chia pudding/oatmeal mix with berries and nuts
  • Lunch: 4-5 scrambled eggs with frozen vegetables
  • Afternoon: Avocado/banana/spinach smoothie with BCAAs or hemp protein and l-glutamine.
  • Typical dinner: Oven-baked salmon with rice, broccoli, green beans, kimchi, sweet potatoes, carrots

I’m not asking anyone to play doctor, but I know that some of you have dealt with GI issues, so I’m hoping to tap into some of that knowledge.

Be careful man, those drugs can have nasty sides. Look them up. Don’t really know how they fit with us.

Yes, I have spent many years with various ppi’s and h2 blockers and can tell you it is not a solution. I maybe would not even go down that path.
I was diagnosed twice with eosinophilic esophagitis this was based on biopsies from endoscopies.
Its considered an inflammatory immune or allergic condition of the esophagus.
Clinically they would treat with ppis or swallowing nasal steroids.

The inflammation could be affecting your sinuses as well idk.
Its been the same case with me.

I’m pretty sure it’s not a solution also, but I’m also 100% certain that a GI specialist will dismiss my symptoms and just tell me to take them. And until I take them s/he won’t investigate further.

So I need to come to the appointment with more of an idea of what to ask for.

That sounds rough! Did you treat it successfully?

Among everything bothering me, its not something that I notice that much specifically. It is something they did though. The first time the gi dr said it wasn’t normal just looking at it before the biopsy even came back.
They put you to sleep though, or make you pretty out of it. Similar to a colonoscopy, They just start from the other direction.
They might recommend it if you have never had one done.

OK, so it sounds like the likely outcome of a GI doctor visit will be

  • get told to take PPI or H2 inhibitors (probably not a solution)
  • Get an endoscopy (I don’t to wreck my brain further with anaesthetics, though… and doing it without them seems very uncomfortable.)

@guitarman01 - what drugs did you take for your esophagus condition?

I think you can get a virtual endoscopy, which of course would allow you to have similiar (although statistically less precise) results, without anaesthetics.

I do want to elaborate, as you linked toward my comment in the original post, that this lack of appetite has become less prominent for me. I have better feelings of hunger these days and am able to gain a little bit more weight, even though I am still a skinny person and all gained weight seemingly goes exclusively to my tummy, but I guess that’s normal. Can I ask how old you are @M_C? Now that I’m 31 I think my body is maturing more and I think it is showing in my metabolism. Perhaps it’s best not to worry too much about your lack of hunger feelings and focus more on having a good eating rhythm with enough meals a day.

I don’t know anything about you, but if you are also suffering from some kind of depression problem, like I did in the past, then that may also contribute to chronic lack of appetite. When I started feeling better I also had more appetite. That said, there are still days where I skip a meal simply because I’m not hungry enough, but I do snack more these days than I used to.

Your mention of heartburn does sound like there might be something up, so best check with a doctor. But then again this sort of thing could also be the result of lingering stress or anxiety that you may or may not be fully conscious of. I personally have no knowledge about these drugs you mentioned.

I also had heartburn, and sometimes the muscle spasms spread to the muscles in my abdomen, and I also had constipation

I also have symptoms of nasal congestion, sometimes chest tightness, chest pressure, heart rate may be faster, and high blood pressure.

They dont put you to sleep like that, its not anesthesia. Ive tried every ppi on the market for long durations. The other treatment is swallowed steroids, the same kind they use for nasal allergies.

Those symptoms sound very similar to mine, except for the heart rate and blood pressure issues.

I think my vascular system is good, but something is clearly up with airways and the GI tract.

What do they use to make the procedure tolerable then?

But this didn’t seem to help you?

I’m 37. But I’ve been feeling like this ever since I got PFS in 2010.

I have anhedonia, so that could contribute for sure. I’m not sure if I’d consider “appetite” the same as “feeling hunger”, though. I consider appetite the desire and enjoyment for food, while hunger feeling is a specific sensation located in the stomach area. I can enjoy food, it just takes a long time to get that hungry feeling.

Absolutely. With the chance of impaired GABA and Allopregnanolone, I might be constantly stressed even with minimal stimuli. But I don’t know what more I can do on this front - I got reduced hours at work, and meditate every day…

Severe consolation to extent the straining over a two year period herniated a disk in my lower back . I needed surgery for that

Increasing the amount of serotonin in my urine cures it .

Have you tried HCG? It might help

Yes, I have, but I developed chest tightness and shortness of breath about two weeks into using it. Now I wonder if perhaps that was reflux symptoms!

They shoot you up or iv you with something that still makes you pretty out of it. You probably wont even remember the procedure.
Swallowing problems or heartburn arent really on the top of my list for things that bother me, and the ppis brought about their own sides. I never really maintained any treatment with the steroids though.
I was also diagnosed with mild gastritis.

Hey man, I was wondering, any improvements on the lack of appetite/ satiety - the feeling of never “feeling” your stomach? I’m currently in that same boat, been about 3 weeks already since I got off the medication, and I still don’t have an appetite (feel hunger) have to remind myself to eat etc… Scary stuff. @M_C

Eating small meals with long pauses between gives me the hunger feeling… But I can’t eat like that for long periods before I lose to much weight.

3 weeks is practically a blink of an eye in finasteride-land, so give yourself a few months to improve. Chances are very good that you’ll go back to normal.

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