When To Seek Emergency Medical Care
Thousands of people die from choking every year. Its particularly common among young children and adults over the age of 74. Choking happens when food or a foreign object gets stuck in your throat or windpipe, blocking the flow of air.
When someone is choking, they:
- are unable to talk
- become flushed, then turn pale or bluish
- lose consciousness
Choking is a life-threatening emergency. If you or a loved one experiences these symptoms, call your local emergency services and perform rescue techniques such as the Heimlich maneuver or chest compressions immediately.
The following techniques may assist you in removing food thats become lodged in your esophagus.
Esophageal Problem: Food Gets Stuck Swallowing Issues
Food has for years gottenstuck in esophagus. Increasing frequency and severe sub-sterna pain. Contacted Dr. Connor Loftus. Flew immediately to Mayo R. Endoscopy . Result: no stricture, no cancer. Given Levsin for occurrence. Happened last night, took 45 minutes to get relief. Next step esophageal magnometry: anybody have any experience with this?
@engelee There are many conditions with the symptom of difficulty swallowing. You will probably need more test to figure out what is causing your symptoms. There are many types of swallowing tests. I think I have about had them all. The one I have had the most is just swallowing barium and a fluoroscope follows the process while a dr follows the progress taking photos or videos. You swallow the barium while in different positions.. standing, turning to side and the same while lying on the table and then lying on your stomach in different positions. Usually the test ends with standing and swallowing a barium tablet.
I am told in an episode of food and/or water not going down to go to ER if it does not move down into stomach within an hour because of the chance of aspirating. You have to bear in mind that it takes a bit to get a dr there and a room set up for the endoscopy to remove any blockage.
What Does Acid Reflux Feel Like In Chest
Heartburn may be caused by a variety of illnesses, including acid reflux and GERD. It usually feels like a burning sensation behind your breastbone in the middle of your chest. The duration of heartburn might range from a few minutes to many hours. Over-the-counter drugs are often used to treat it at home.
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Symptoms Of Oesophageal Cancer
The most common symptoms of oesophageal cancer include:
- difficulty swallowing
- indigestion or heartburn that don’t go away
- unexplained weight loss
- pain in your throat or behind your breastbone
There are many other conditions that cause these symptoms. Most of them are much more common than oesophageal cancer.
What Causes Acid Reflux
Acid reflux is caused by weakness or relaxation of the lower esophageal sphincter . Normally this valve closes tightly after food enters your stomach. If it relaxes when it shouldnt, your stomach contents rise back up into the esophagus.
Stomach acids flow back up into the esophagus, causing reflux.
Factors that can lead to this include:
- Too much pressure on the abdomen. Some pregnant women experience heartburn almost daily because of this increased pressure.
- Particular types of food and eating habits.
- Medications that include medicines for asthma, high blood pressure and allergies as well as painkillers, sedatives and anti-depressants.
- A hiatal hernia. The upper part of the stomach bulges into the diaphragm, getting in the way of normal intake of food.
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What Are The Main Symptoms Of Gerd
The main symptoms are persistent heartburn and acid regurgitation. Some people have GERD without heartburn. Instead, they experience pain in the chest, hoarseness in the morning or trouble swallowing. You may feel like you have food stuck in your throat, or like you are choking or your throat is tight. GERD can also cause a dry cough and bad breath.
What Are The Symptoms Of Dysphagia
If you have dysphagia, you may have some of the following symptoms:
- Pain while swallowing
- Feeling like something is stuck in your throat or chest
- Gagging or coughing when swallowing
- Inhaling food , which can lead to lung infections such as pneumonia
If you regularly have trouble swallowing or have these symptoms, call your family doctor. If food has gotten stuck and youre having trouble breathing, call for emergency help right away.
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Diet Modification And Behavioral Changes
If removing the swallowing problem is not possible, changing what and how you eat can help make swallowing safer and more comfortable. Your speech-language pathologist may recommend:
- Eliminating foods that cause swallowing problems or changing their consistency for example, by blending fruit into smoothies instead of eating it whole
- Changing the posture or position of your head when you swallow
- Using special techniques to keep food moving if it feels stuck
How To Relieve Food Stuck In Chest
Drinking a can of Coke or similar fizzy beverage may assist release food lodged in the esophagus, according to research. This easy procedure is often used by doctors and emergency personnel to break up meals.
Similarly, Is it normal to feel like something is stuck in your chest?
You may find it difficult to swallow if the lining of your esophagus becomes irritated. You could also have soreness below your breastbone or the sensation that something is stuck in your chest. When you eat, your symptoms will most likely become worse. If you have esophagitis, your doctor may prescribe pain medication to help you feel better.
Also, it is asked, Why do I feel like food is stuck in my chest after eating?
GERD is the medical term for chronic heartburn and indigestion. When stomach acids irritate the lining of the esophagus, it may produce a burning sensation in the throat and neck, coughing, or the sense that something is lodged behind your breastbone.
Secondly, How can I cure GERD?
Antacids are used to treat GERD. For sporadic and very occasional symptoms of reflux, over-the-counter antacids are beneficial. Blockers of histamine. H2 blockers are medications that assist to reduce acid secretion. Inhibitors of proton pumping. Prokinetic substances.
Also, How long does indigestion last?
People also ask, Does drinking water help acid reflux?
Related Questions and Answers
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How Is A Swallowing Disorder Diagnosed
If you are having difficulty swallowing solids or liquids, your doctor will ask you about your symptoms. He or she will probably perform or refer you for two or more of the following tests:
Flexible laryngoscopy: This test is used to view the structures of the larynx . A small flexible camera is passed through the nasal passage, through the nasopharynx , and down into the throat. A topical anesthetic is used for maximum comfort during the examination. The examination takes around 1 – 2 minutes and is not painful.
Modified barium swallow study : This test is used to view your swallowing process. You will be asked to swallow a variety of barium-coated substances, such as liquid, applesauce, and a graham cracker. Barium is a whitish paste that allows the substances to light up under an X-ray so the examiner can determine how these substances are moving through your mouth, pharynx, and esophagus.
Complications Of A Swallowing Disorder
Dysphagia can be frustrating because it takes the joy out of eating and drinking. It can also lead to more severe complications such as malnutrition, weight-loss, and dehydration. In addition, if you are aspirating , respiratory problems can occur such as pneumonia, bronchitis, or other upper respiratory infections.
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Symptoms And Causes Of Achalasia
In addition to having trouble swallowing, many people with achalasia experience symptoms similar to gastroesophageal reflux disease, or GERD, such as chronic heartburn and chest pain. However, these symptoms are the result of food remaining in the esophagus and not from GERD, in which stomach acid flows up into the esophagus.
Achalasia can also cause frequent hiccupping and difficulty belching. As the condition progresses, achalasia can cause food stuck in the esophagus to regurgitate into the mouth, which can be mistaken for vomiting.
Doctors dont fully understand what causes achalasia. Evidence points to genetic factors or to an autoimmune disorder that causes the immune system to mistakenly attack healthy nerve tissue in the esophagus.
Without treatment, achalasia can lead to a severe dilation, or widening, of the esophagus, making it nonfunctional. People with a dilated esophagus may aspirate, or inhale, food and liquids instead of swallowing them, increasing the risk of pneumonia. As it becomes more difficult to swallow, achalasia can lead to dramatic weight loss and malnourishment.
In addition, achalasia increases the risk of esophageal cancer because retained food and liquids can cause chronic inflammation, irritating the esophagus.
When To See A Doctor
See your health care provider if you regularly have difficulty swallowing or if weight loss, regurgitation or vomiting accompanies your dysphagia.
If an obstruction interferes with breathing, call for emergency help immediately. If you’re unable to swallow because you feel that food is stuck in your throat or chest, go to the nearest emergency department.
Also Check: How To Make Stomach Pain Go Away
Medications For Swallowing Disorders
Medications can be effective in relieving specific swallowing symptoms or treating an underlying cause such as an infection or a neurologic condition:
- Botulinum toxin injections and other types of muscle relaxers to relax certain muscles in the esophagus
- Proton pump inhibitors and other medications to treat GERD
- Antibiotics to treat infection
- Corticosteroids to treat dysphagia due to an allergic reaction
- Other medications to help minimize symptoms of a neurologic disorder
What Does Stuck Stomach Mean
We often explain symptoms that we do understand in lay terms that have little to no medical significance. One of these colloquial terms is a stuck stomach or as if something feels like it is stuck in the stomach. The latter is often associated with a meal in that there is the sensation that the food is stuck in the stomach. These sensations may not be caused by any underlying medical condition. This does not mean that it is imaginary but rather than the perception of something being stuck in the stomach is incorrect.
However, there are times where food and fluid can become obstructed in the stomach or even the stomach itself can become strangulated. In the early stages there may only be some vague symptoms but with time it can become severe. The two most notable conditions in this regard is a hiatal hernia and gastroparesis leading to delayed gastric emptying. Understanding what causes these conditions will help in making sense of strange sensations like there is something stuck in the stomach.
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Food Getting Stuck 5 Reasons To Take It Seriously
Oh, its nothing, many people may think when a bite of food gets stuck in their throats. But if food is sticking in there frequently, they may have something more serious to chew on than a simple eating hiccup.
We tend to think of swallowing as automatic that its something our bodies just do. But in fact, this act relies on a highly coordinated collaboration involving the brain, esophagus, several nerves, and a couple of muscular valves. If one of these players is out of step, or something goes wrong to interfere with its role, food can take a lot longer to travel through the esophagus to the stomach or feel like its stuck in the throat.
This disorder is called dysphagia. And about 10 million Americans are evaluated for it each year.
Dysphagia does not exist in a vacuum it is typically the result of a separate, underlying health issue. And some of these issues, if left untreated, could get serious.
Swallowing Problems Can Result from Unexpected Illnesses
Patients who feel like food is getting caught or slowed down in their throats should take it as a sign from their bodies to see a doctor. Dysphagia could be the result of one of these more urgent ailments:
Respect What Your Body is Saying
If you or a loved one is experiencing trouble swallowing, dont take it as a minor hiccup. Call us. Cincinnati GI specializes in several treatments for dysphagia, including medications, the gentle expansion of the esophagus, and surgery.
Final Note On Keeping Moisture In Meats
If meat is feeling too dry, there are ways to increase the moisture content. Keep in mind, sometimes it feels too dry because the bites are too big and hitting too heavy.
Here are a few tips on keeping moisture in meats, or you can read a full blog post here.
Cover your meats when you cook
Use stoneware when baking
Use extra broth to increase the liquid meat is cooked in
Use a meat thermometer to avoid overcooking meat
Reheat foods with a damp paper towel
You may also be interested in this blog post Why Do Bad Foods Go Down the Best?
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Is There Surgery To Treat Gerd
GERD is usually controlled with medications and lifestyle changes . If these dont work, or if you cant take medications for an extended period, surgery may be a solution.
- Laparoscopic antireflux surgery is the standard surgical treatment. Its a minimally invasive procedure that fixes your acid reflux by creating a new valve mechanism at the bottom of your esophagus. The surgeon wraps the upper part of the stomach around the lower portion of the esophagus. This reinforces the lower esophageal sphincter so food wont reflux back into the esophagus.
- LINX deviceimplantation is another minimally invasive surgery. A LINX device is a ring of tiny magnets that are strong enough to keep the junction between the stomach and esophagus closed to refluxing acid but weak enough to allow food to pass through.
Can Dysphagia Be Prevented Or Avoided
There isnt anything you can do to prevent having swallowing difficulties. The best way to reduce your risk of occasionally having trouble swallowing is to eat slowly, eat small bites, and chew your food well. In addition, treating acid reflux early can help lower your risk of developing scar tissue in the throat.
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Indigestion Or Heartburn That Don’t Go Away
You can get indigestion when acid from your stomach goes back up into the oesophagus. Or when the stomach is inflamed or irritated.
The valve between the stomach and oesophagus normally stops this from happening. The valve is called the cardiac sphincter. A tumour that develops here can stop the valve working, causing indigestion.
Remember that indigestion is common and it’s not usually caused by cancer. It can be very painful, even when there’s nothing seriously wrong.
See your doctor if youve had heartburn most days for 3 weeks or more, even if youre taking medicine and it seems to help. Heartburn is burning chest pain or discomfort that happens after eating.
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When Should I See My Doctor
Tell your doctor right away if you have confusion, chest tightness, bleeding, sore throat, fever, irregular heartbeat, weakness, or unusual fatigue.
Get immediate medical attention if you have any chest pain, pressure, or burning that doesnât go away . These can also be signs of a heart attack.
Also get medical help right away if you are vomiting blood or what looks like dark coffee grounds. See a doctor immediately if your stools are black, bloody, or a maroon color.
If your heartburn is severe and over-the-counter medicines donât help, or if you have taken them for more than 2 weeks, call your doctor. Also see your doctor if you are losing weight without trying or having trouble swallowing. Your doctor can check to see what is causing the problem and what the best solution will be for you.