I think I have ulcers.

About 6 months ago, I was awakened in the middle of the night by a horrific pain right at the breastbone. Having had little to no experience with heartburn, I got up and took asprin. I writhed in pain for another 45 minutes before the pain let up enough to let me sleep. Approx. 8 weeks later, it happened again. I promptly did a Google search for gallstones. (well, it made sense at the time). Another 8 - 10 weeks, happens again. Then in January, it happened whilst on vacation, and this time it was so bad that I passed out for a few seconds. Yesterday, yep, got me again. This is absolutely the worst pain I have ever experienced, worse than migraines, worse than childbirth. You get this awful burning and you feel like your guts are twisting in on themselves,and there is absolutely nothing you can do to get away from the pain. I spent all day yesterday in bed, if I weren’t in pain, then I was sleeping, trying to recover. I was afraid to eat anything today for fear something would trigger it again. Monday, first thing, I am calling a gastroentologist.

So, my question is, have you any experience with ulcers, and what can I expect in the way of treatment, change of lifestyle, etc…?

I am not a doctor. You should see one ASAP!

As I understand it, some years ago it was discovered that most ulcers are caused by some bacterium and are now treated with antibiotics. Lifestyle impact is minimal.

But I don’t think ulcers manifest themselves like this. I think there’s regular pain or discomfort. I don’t know what’s wrong, but it doesn’t sound like ulcers to me.

See a doctor ASAP! If this happens again before then, seriously consider going to a hospital emergency room.

And when you find out what’s going on, if it’s not too personal, please let us know.

Good luck!

Yepper, Doctor time IMO…

Let us know what you find out–my husband is currently suffering from something that sounds similar to your situation and I can’t get him to go to the doctor.

I suspect your pain is not ulcers. Sounds like chondritis. I used to have it too. A sharp, stabbing/burning pain right at the breastbone that would wake me from a sound sleep and last about an hour or so. Aspirin would make an ulcer worse but it helps this. Chondritis is an inflammation of the cartilage - in this case the cartilage attatching the ribs to the breastbone.

It happens to some people who sleep on their sides and let the top arm hang down, tucked into their body and resting on the bed. The only way to prevent it is to learn to sleep with the top arm up higher so it doesn’t pull your ribs down. I used pillows in front of my tummy to rest the arm on until I learned to keep that arm up on my hip. It took a couple of weeks, but now I sleep that way all the time - problem solved.

By all means let your doctor check it out but, if you don’t have reflux or an ulcer, try changing your sleep position. Hope this helps.

My ulcer manifested itself first as a pain in my lower back radiating aroung my waist. God, that was the worst pain! Luckly it was treatable by antibiotics (who knew?) and the pain stayed away. Since though, I seem to have more gas then I did before. And less friends…hmmmmmm…