Ask Dr. Eisner

by Todd Eisner Patient Expert

1. Does Prevacid cause fatigue?

While Prevacid does not classically cause fatigue, it is possible. Fatigue is a rare side effect of many medications. The best thing would be if you ask your doctor if you could stop the Prevacid for a few days, and see if the fatigue resolves, if it doesn't, it is likely not related to the medication.

2. Can a Vitamin D deficiency be related to GERD?

While vitamin D deficiency can be linked to an increased susceptibility to several chronic diseases such as high blood pressure, tuberculosis, cancer, peridontal disease, multiple sclerosis, chronic pain, depression and schizophrenia, there is no known link to GERD.

3. For over a month, I have had pain in my chest and it feels like food is trapped behind my breastbone. I have had panic attacks and it feels like I'm always full. An antacid helps calm the symptoms. Does this sound familiar?

While the symptoms are non-specific, and may be related to either anxiety or acid, other possibilities need to be considered. Depending on your age and other associated signs and symptoms (weight loss, anemia), an upper gastrointestinal endoscopy may be warranted to rule out significant gastrointestinal pathology. You should check with your doctor.

4. I was diagnosed with Severe Supine GERD recently. I'm having increased sensitivity to smells, which make me dizzy and trigger abdominal pain. Is this a symptom of my GERD?

Some patients with GERD have a loss of sensitivity to smell and taste. Increased sensitivity to smell, however, is not typically related to GERD. You should check with your doctor to see if a further evaluation is warranted.

5. What is your advice for dealing with acid reflux symptoms that become worse during high-intensity exercise (even with medications)?

If the symptoms are worse, you should probably avoid that type of activity. GERD occurs more frequently during exercise than at rest, and can be a cause of chest pain or abdominal pain during exertion. An increased intensity of exercise will result in increased reflux. Running produces more reflux than less jarring activities, such as bicycling, while weight training produces few reflux symptoms. Eating just before exercise has been found to further aggravate GERD. Exercise still is beneficial if the right type is done. People who participate in little recreational activity were more likely than active people to be hospitalized for GERD. It makes sense for people with GERD to use exercise as part of a healthy lifestyle, perhaps choosing activities that are less likely to cause reflux symptoms.

Todd Eisner
Meet Our Writer
Todd Eisner

Todd wrote for HealthCentral as a patient expert for Digestive Health.