Went to the GI doc this morning. Had a laundry list in hand. The previously discussed J-tube that was not an option is now back on the table. But we've still got another test and consult before we make that final leap. Having something called a hydrogen breath test done. Basically to test the amount of bacteria in my gut and what it's doing during digestion. I go in early, take a drink of lactulose and hang out for half the day, intermittently breathing into a bag. Lactulose is not digested by the stomach, but is by the bacteria in the intestines. If I have too much bacteria, the lactulose will be digested violently and create hydrogen gas. If there is normal/not enough bacteria, there should be low levels of hydrogen gas in my system after a few hours. There's a strict diet the day before (which I'm already doing anyway, minus the soda...no soda before the test, and I currently live on Sierra Mist Natural, guess it'll be gatorade that week), and no sleeping or leaving during the test. So I'm going to get some reading done!
The other option for testing the theory was a hefty dose of antibiotics. But antibiotics (especially the strong one he was recommending) already do a number on the gut, and I know the risks of taking antibiotics. If there's another way of testing without taking antibiotics, I'm all for that. If it comes back that I do have a bacterial issue, I will willingly take them then. The only problem there is that even though Cipro would just be 10 day courses, I could be taking it regularly for the rest of my life to control this (like once a year was his guess).
I also requested an EGD, which he had no objections to. I had one three years ago and my symptoms have drastically gotten worse. So I want to keep track of what it looks like in there. The biggest risk for chronic reflux sufferers is a pre-cancerous condition/cells called Barret's esophagus. Regular screening is the best attack. Plus, there's a whole lot of GI tract to cover; I'm sure there's lots of funky going on in there.
So, things went well with both docs this week. I'm very glad.
And I drove home to see the family today :) I got baby snuggles earlier! My little nephew is so precious and he's getting so big so fast! Agenda for tomorrow is some best friend time (she and her family are moving back here from far away land, so we're going to go see her new house tomorrow). Saturday I get more baby time and dinner with another best friend. Life is good.
Time for sleep for this girl. Much love all around!