You wake up one day and you think you have another case of acid reflux, but this time, with the usual treatments… it doesn’t go away. After a bit more research, maybe even a few doctors visits and tests later… you discover you have bile reflux. But what in the world is bile reflux?
Let’s Take a Closer Look at This Frustrating Condition…
Bile reflux, also known as bile gastritis is a condition that many individuals in every part of the world is suffering from. Unlike with acid reflux, bile reflux usually cannot be controlled by simply a change in the lifestyle or diet. Instead, it may need to be managed with medications and sometimes, surgery.
What is Heck Is Happening In My Gut?
The first thing you need to do is gain an understanding of what happens when you have bile gastritis. Bile is liquid that is in the liver and there are times when this substance can back up. When it “backs up,” the bile goes into your stomach and up into the esophagus. Researchers have found that there is no harm, but if it continues for a long period of time, without treatment, the consequences could be serious. For example, if you let bile reflux to continue, you are increasing your risk of developing esophageal cancer.
Here is What You Need To Look Out For…
In order to determine if you have this condition, you will first need to know what to look for. There are a couple of symptoms attached to bile reflux. Some individuals may experience a great deal of pain in the abdominal area. Others may have frequent heartburn. Some individuals with this condition may also have nausea and start vomiting. The vomit may have a green or yellowish color to it (this is the bile). Some individuals have even experienced extreme weight loss.
Should You Go See A Doctor?
Some individuals do not realize that when they are experiencing the above symptoms that they should go see a doctor. If you start to lose a large amount of weight and you are not trying or are constantly having heartburn, that would be a good indication that it is time for you to go for a doctor’s visit. If you are currently taking medication for reflux disease, but it does not seem to be working for you, then you should talk with your doctor about it.
Ok, So What CAUSES Bile Reflux?
There are a couple of factors that could cause an individual to experience bile gastritis (reflux). Complications from surgery is one of those causes. Those individuals who have had gastric surgery may develop bile gastritis if the pyloric valve was damaged during surgery. Peptic ulcers would be another cause of this condition. Peptic ulcers can block the valve, which could prevent the stomach from functioning like it should – this results in the fluid backing up. Some individuals who have had gallbladder surgery have experiences bile gastritis as well.
Bile Reflux or Acid Reflux?
Many individuals who develop bile reflux and acid reflux are confused. There are many who believe that bile reflux and acid reflux are the same thing, when they are, in fact,two different conditions.
The main different between the two are what is coming back up and where it is coming from. When an individual has acid reflux, the stomach acid will be backed up. When an individual has bile reflux, the bile from the small intestine will be backed up. Also, individuals with bile reflux are more likely to experience heartburn and pain in the upper abdomen.
Should You Get A Test?
Individuals who wonder if they have this condition may want to know about the testing that can be done. Often times, an endoscopy can be done in order to determine if the individual has bile reflux. During the endoscopy, a small camera will be placed in the esophagus in order to see what is going on. The medical staff may also do what is known as ambulatory acid tests or esophageal impedance. With esophageal impedance, they will be measuring the liquid reflux that is happening in the esophagus.
A Closer Look At Treatments
There are a great deal of treatment methods that are available and there are a couple of medications that individuals can take in order to get the relief they need – Sequestrants is one of them. Sequestrants are used in order to disrupt the circulation of bile. Another useful medication that individuals can take would be Ursodeoxycholic Acid.
Ursodeoxycholic acid will help promote the bile flow. Other individuals may be given a prescription forprokinetic agents. Prokinetic agents are used in order to help the stomach frequently empty itself. There are also proton pump inhibitors – they can block acid production altogether. You can get these at your local drug or grocery store.
Sometimes, the medications prescribed by a doctor may not work, but that does not mean you have to live with this annoying condition forever. When the medication does not work, the doctor may recommend surgery. For this condition, there are two different types of surgery. The first one is called diversion surgery. The second type of surgery is anti-reflux surgery. For those individuals who have had gastric surgery, diversion surgery is recommended. During diversion surgery, the surgeon will create an area where the bile will drain into. With anti reflux surgery, the surgeon will cut a piece that is wrapped around the esophageal spinster.
But before you go under the knife or pop pills for years, be sure to try natural health treatments for bile reflux.
An Increase In Risks?
Many individuals throughout the world are suffering from bile reflux. Those who have a family history of these conditions, your chances of developing it are high. Those individuals who suffer after eating spicy foods are also more likely to develop the condition as are those who are overweight and are having a hard problem losing weight. All of those things are said to trigger bile gastritis. Perhaps you might need to make some small changes to your lifestyle in order to deal with this condition.
Do you smoke? Then quit smoking.
Apart from this, you should also avoid eating fatty foods, drinking carbonated drinks and avoid drinking alcoholic beverages. You may want to start eating smaller meals each day as well.
Are you overweight? Then lose some weight.
Sometimes, something as simple as losing weight and changing your diet can help you, but not always (it is still worth a try). Some individuals have also found that raising their bed up helps them find relief. If you are stressed, you need to watch your stress levels. This is because stress can hinder the digestion process.
If you continue to experience the symptoms, no matter what you do, you need to call and make an appointment with your doctor. Tell your doctor about the symptoms you are having and he/she will take it from there.
If you have been diagnosed with what is known as gastroesophageal reflux disease and the medications prescribed are not helping you, then you should contact your dcotr because you may need to have additional treatment for bile reflux.
One More Thing…
Remember, each case is different and you simply need to see what is going to work for you in your circumstance. It is always a good idea to get checked out when the symptoms first start to develop. This way, you will be able to get a grip on it before it spirals out of control and develops into a problem that is worse than bile reflux.