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Sandra asks…

pregnant and heartburn, ahhhhh!!!!

ok…so I’m sure some if not most of you have this problem…I’m 35 weeks pregnant and am dealing with the nastiest heartburn!! Tums used to work, as did milk..but not anymore. I have some Gaviscon that my doctor recommended but not only does it taste nasty, but it doesn’t really do the job either. I’m wondering if anyone has any ideas that might work..any safe natural remedies!!! thanks for any help!!

answers:

I am so sorry! I had the worst heartburn with baby number 2, from like 4 months on. And the only thing that sounded good to eat was the stuff that made me suffer. I liked the Chewable Rolaids, they dont taste too bad, but they add up for the wallet. Sit up for at least an hour after you eat. Get lots of pillows and elevate yourself a bit. Talk to your doc about other solutions. You’re in the home stretch! Start thinking about that first meal after delivery! With number one I had Taco Bell, number 2 amazing lasagna (all the things I couldnt handle in those last weeks). Good luck!

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Sharon asks…

Pancreatitis, don’t quite fit into any causitive category, but a bit in some … Any GI’s out there?

6 weeks ago, I went to my PD with what I thought was severe heartburn. I went to pharm. and he suggested Pepcid. I took it, no luck in an hour (like he said). I called and asked PD how long Pepcid takes to take it away, she said an hour, I said it’s been 4 hours and I was in agony. Severe abdominal pain, some vomiting, low grade fever. I had what I thought was the flu for 3 days prior (no pain, just didn’t feel well, diarr and low grade fever. She said come in. She took a blood test … Highly elevated Amylase and Lipase, somewhat elevated ALT, AST. Had weekly blood tests since then, and it’s been going down. Nearly normal Amylase, still 3 times normal Lipase (which is much lower than it was… nearly 3000).

I read the following on internet as far as causes: 1) Alcoholism: “Alcohol is the leading culprit. Usually, it takes several years of heavy drinking — such as a 12-pack of beer of every day.” I drink, but not more than 3-4 drinks per night, 3-4 nights per week (if that!) however, I had a life altering even a few weeks before attack and did drink a bit more (nightly, maybe 4 drinks), but no ‘binge drinking’. Rarely drunk more than 4 times in the last year, no hangovers. 2) Gallstones: never had a symptom. 3) heridedary: nope, nobody. 4) Meds: rare cases of Lamictal and Ativan have been reported “after market, and reported on ‘compassionate please’ cases. I am on both. (BTW, Lamictal was raised from 150 mg to 200 mg 1 wk before attack, and due to stress, went from 1 ativan per day to 2-3). 5) no traumas.

The pain was severe (I have little tolerance for pain), but not enough that I felt ER was necessary. Nor did she. I was still walking around and doing what shopping I had to do, etc. OTC painkillers helped.

Background: 48 yrs old, F, somewhat healthy diet. I feel fine now. Having another blood test Monday. Also have history of ovarian problems…. recently, cysts, fibroids. Any known relation? Any herbal/alternative cures or remedies? Is this permanent? She says never another drink of alcohol, not even cough syrup. Is that true? Even socially, a couple here and there? Due to my two year history of drugs (antidepressants, Lamictal, Xanax, Ativan … all prescribed by Dr’s), I have also taken Milk Thistle and Alpha Lipoic Acid to counteract the med’s effect on liver.

Just can’t find enough general information on this on the internet. Just doom, gloom, not so great mortality rates, and a future of horror to live with … kidney dialysis, heart failure, liver failure, extreme pain, narcotic addiction, surgeries.

Please advise… Thank you and God bless.

answers:

Yes, she is absolutely correct. You were drinking a lot of alcohol before your onset of acute pancreatitis. It may not seem like a lot, but you really WERE drinking enough to cause pancreatitis. If you continue to drink and you have recurring episodes of it, you could end up with chronic pancreatitis. Anyway, you were very lucky as it seems like you didnt have a severe case of it. But unfortunately, acute pancreatitis can get very dangerous if you have a bad enough case of it (I interviewed a patient the other day who had it and was just getting discharged from the hospital 2 months later). So yes, stay completely away from any alcohol – its not worth the risk.

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