Gastritis Support Group

Gastritis is a medical term for inflammation of the lining of the stomach. It means that white blood cells move into the wall of the stomach as a response to some type of injury. Gastritis has many underlying causes, from infection with the bacterium H. pylori, bile reflux, or excessive consumption of alcohol or certain foods or drugs like aspirin.

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Bile Reflux

In a posting before I had mentioned that the endoscopy showed I had bile in my stomach, but an upper GI showed I did not have reflux. Since then I have had every test available except for an encapsulated endoscopy. Has anyone had this test? I'm actually looking forward to it because I hope it proves what is actually going on with me. I have suffered terribly with only a few days of relief from all the symptoms, and everything I have done has failed miserably. I have nutritionist telling me it's hormonal based, I have a surgeon telling me it's a motility disorder(which may be part of the issue), then I have GI's giving me conflicting advice. I have gone as far as being tested for porphyria--since I have one genetic disorder I didn't want to rule out another one. But the test showed negative--Surprise Surprise!!!!! This leads me back to the original endoscopy report. The one that showed excessive bile in the stomach, and "bald spots". Only my GP said that it sounds like Gastritis, hence why I came here and why I started on a gastritis diet. 2 years later I'm still no better off. I'm in pain and misery everyday, every second of the day, and yet I force myself to eat to continue to survive. Some days I ask Why, Why do I bother to keep torturing myself.
My question is does anyone else have bile reflux of the stomach and has any medication taken helped?
Has the dr mentioned performing Roux En Y surgery to correct the problem?
The reason I ask is because I will be discussing this with my GI tomorrow and I am about to take the plunge of possibly having the surgery to see if it helps. Although, after reading what the surgery is I have reservations because Roux En Y surgery is Gastric Bypass surgery. My sister had that done due to her being overweight, I am far from overweight, I am plunging to underweight as it is, and I saw what she's been through since having the surgery. Do I want to become so anemic that I have to have iron transfusions? My b12 is in the toilet already, and B12 shots do not help me--can I afford to have more issues on top of what I already have?
If anyone knows anything about Bile Reflux Gastritis please let me know, what has helped you and if the surgery has ever been discussed.

Thank You



Hi Penny Im sorry you have this misery,me too. I had my gallbladder out in October 2009 and have been suffering gastritis since then. I also have a hiatus hernia. The pain is horrendous and only dies down a bit some days only to flare up bad again most days. It persists and its hard to eat. Im so fed up of not being able to just eat without it flaring up. I can have no orange juice or wine. It can hurt for hours and then I can't sleep. Anyway my gastro said it looked like bile reflux but the biopsies didn't show it. I still don't know why I have gastritis. I have just had a stool test for H pylori and have to wait for the results. They could have done that a long time ago. I have acid reflux proberly due to the hiatus hernia. Ive been offered a ph test to see if acid is coming up. They told me to stop my tablets 7 days before it. How can I with bad reflux? I did this once and ended up with oesophaghitis. I had severe chest pains,vomiting and couldn't eat. The pain was bad,well still is as it led to how I am now. So no way. It looks like I won't get the test and they know I have reflux. Im fed up of suffering like you. Is the test you describe the Bravo test? They don't do it where I live. Its best to find out whats coming up. Im not sure if you ought to have the Roux en Y. Ive heard of it. Not many people seem to get it done. The surgeons would want to know for definate that it was bile reflux. They haven't offered me surgery so I don't know what will happen. They say the only other treatment is Carafate. I can't take that so take Gaviscon which doesn't help a lot. Theres a site called which has a forum for support. Ive been on it but most people there are just on medication. The diet is said not to help it much but you can follow the reflux diet. Keep me up to date. Let me know if you get offered the Roux en Y. Im thinkinbg of changing gastros. Im scared at the moment as I keep thinking the Nissen fundoplication might help but now I don't know if I will get the surgery. Everyday is a nightmare with it. I hope we both get some help anyway.

i dont have bile reflux , just reflux one of my docotrs has put in a referal for Gatsric bypass, i did talk to my PMC about it and im not sure if it is what i want ...the doc.said it would be the only thing that would really fix the reflux ....i also talked about the Nissen surgery but all doctors tell me its not something they would really recommend so i really dont know what to B12 is down too so im getting shots right now will see if they help when its time to check it again ....

I had gallbladder removal and then about 3 months later had terrible gastritis symptoms. Did the upper endoscopy and they saw bile reflux.

I went on Prevacid (1x) and Carafate (4x), and kept on the GERD diet - no acidic foods, no spicy foods, no coffee, no alcohol, no chocolate or mint, etc.

In my case, things worked out well for a months, until I made the mistake of taking a calcium carbonate based supplement.

I feel terrible for you and wish I had solid advice. In my case maybe I was lucky and by being really strict on meds and diet that's all I need. Just please do be careful before having surgery - you can't take that back.


This site has the best info:

If they found bile, that's what you have then. Bile is not supposed to be in your stomach. There's a valve at the bottom of the stomach that must not be closing completely and it allows the bile to flow back up. It eats away at our stomach lining and causes gastritiis.

One thing to avoid is constipation. The pressure from that makes the valve warp worse and even more bile flows back.

The PPI's just seem to take the edge off the pain. The coating meds and herbs do much more. They coat the sore spots and prevent the bile from making them worse. I take slippery elm a few times a day and that's the best thing I've found in 2 years.

Of course my diet is severely limited. I have a HUGE list of things I cannot take: alcohol, soda pop, brewed coffee and tea, citic acidy stuff, multi vitamins, calcium pills, magnesium, iron pills, chocolate, Nsaids like Ibuprofin.

But my life is just fine with these limitations. I know it's forever but the slippery elm makes the pain go down to 0/10 some days. The only surgery I have read about for BRD is Pyloric Valve surgery to make the valve close better. It has a 50% success rate though so some Dr's don't want to do it.

From what I read about Roux En Y, it's used for Bile Duct obstructions and tumors, besides the weight loss reason. Do you have those? Are they assuming you have those?

Good luck today,

Hi Silkakc what do you drink? I still don't know if I have or had bile reflux but I get acid reflux with the gastritis. I don't know what to drink I do drink coffee and tea as pop is just as bad. I get awful pain some days and other days it calms down. The bad pain stops me sleeping. I hope sometimes that I can have an operation if it will cure this. I keep thinking that if they deal with the hiatus hernia then it will go away. Like you say we don't know the results of it. Im at my wits end as the pain is so bad.

Thanks for all your comments--after the GI visit yesterday he agrees that Bile Refux is most likely the cause so he prescribed URSADOIL(or IOL)--I started taking it last night and took two this morning. From what I read that is the only medication that minimizes the symptoms. I have to say this morning has been the first morning I have eaten breakfast that I haven't been in completely and utter despair. I have some slight cramping that is tolerable, some ab pain but no where near the horror I've been experiencing. But, this has happened before, I can take meds for a short time, but any long term usage, it fails. So I will see what happens.
I did go to the mayo clinic and got tons of info and I have to tell you that my GI has never heard of the Roux En Y surgery done for this condition--I was floored. He did not recommend Carafate because it's constipating and that is the last thing I need--I have enough trouble going as is and the only side effect to the URSADOIL is the runs--so far I haven't experienced that. I just started wth the meds.
I have to go for more motility testing of the colon--Sitzmark test and Defacogram--the Defacogram I am not looking forward to, The Sitzmark will be a breeze. The reason for this is because he feels I definitely have a motility disorder going on as well. He mentioned Fibro and asked if I'm on any Antidepressants I told him NO and that I have an appt with the Neuro in a couple of weeks. This all because I have neuropathy going on as well, which he feels all my symptoms are connected to Fibro. He's the first dr I've seen that has thought this--but it has passed my thoughts many times. We will see!!!

Right now my focus is being able to eat again--have CD and a Legume(soy, beans, peas etc) intolerance really limits what I can eat/drink. He wants me to stay on the diet I am accustomed to for now until after we get all the testings done, and give the meds time to get into my system--then maybe we can try to increase more foods--but for now, it's chicken, chicken more chicken, eggs and little cheese.

He mentioned again that I have acid but that my PH level was 2 anyone know what that means? He keeps saying it's low but I don't know what that means, so if any of you know please let me know.
Thanks everyone!!!

Silkakc I meant to ask how much slippery elm do you use each time?

I haven't used my herb's in so long because the place I was getting them from processes them with Wheat and Soy and I have to avoid cross contamination. I have to find a new place that processes them GF/SF.

Now I know why my motts Natural applesauce bothered me so much to eat it--the Ascorbic Acid in it. OH well homemade or nothing!!!

A low PH indicates a higher rate of acid. Included link above. (One of the first explanations of this I have ever been able to understand). Remember I am here for you my friend and you know where to find me, whenever you want to talk. Also know you are in my thoughts and I am with you 100% Sowle. Always!!!


I found one coffee that is 100% aribica bean, which is supposed to be lower in acid. It's an instant coffee from Walmart- the Great value brand. I use about 2/3 of a tsp BUT then I put in 3-4 tablespoons of their Extra Rich Powder creamer. I drink 4 cups a day:( I know it's bad but I used to drink 7 so I've cut down!
Other than that, I drink 3-4 bottles of Poland Spring a day. I can't use chlorinated tap water to drink or in coffee. Thje chlorine really bothers my gastritis.

Sowle, the dose is supposed to be 1 teaspoon but I use more. I will make a big mug of hot water and use 1 tablespoon of SE and whisk it with a fork. I add sugar and powder creamer to it and sip it like coffee. Other times, I have made it into a paste the consistency of oatmeal and swallowed it whole if I was rushing out the door. Just don't use it 1 hour before or after medications. It coats so well that it will prevent them from being absorbed.

I will try that. I did find a tea that I found to be very beneficial, it has SE in it along with other herbs that good for gastritis and inflammation. It's off the website. The tea taste horrible, I haven't found anything yet that helps it taste better, I am actually tempted to grind the herbs even more and put them in some capsules to see if that will work.
The info you found on BRD--from what I read BRD does not errode the stomach because it's hightly alkaline, but because it's in the stomach where it does't belong because your stomach needs to maintain a certain acditiy with the bile it throws off the balance causing gastritis, its actually the gastritis that causes the stomach errosion. Unless I'm wrong, but that is what I have read. Either way it's bad news anyway you look at it.. What blows my mind is how dr's will just dismiss it having any life long impacts. I wish I could find a dr that has actually suffered from it and know exactly what it feels like, and how difficult it is to maintain a normal life. Maybe then it will be acknowledged and more research will actually get done.

Hi Sowle I have just read your posts. I sympathize with you. My pain is bad again and I still don't know whats causing my gastritis. It came out negetive the test for H pylori. The only answer seems to be bile like yours. Its strange but some days it will really calm down then the next day it flares up and its agony. Im not sure how much of mine is the hiatus hernia though. I wish we could all get healed by a miracle. Its so hard. I still haven't got much willpower with certain foods and coffee. I am definately not having coffee again for a bit. I thought I would be ok with decaff,I thought wrong. Anyway the latest is that my doctor thinks now that my PPI could be upsetting my stomach. He has changed me to Cimetedine,Tagamet. I haven't seen any improvement yet though its only been about 4 days. I did an internet search "Can proton pump inhibitors worsen gastritis?" A study on a few gerbils showed that it can cause atrophic gastritis,so yes some gastritis. I wonder if they can hinder it healing then? What do you think? The gerbils stomachs were worse. About Slippery elm,can you eat better when taking it? I haven't tried it all the time yet. I want rid of this hiatus hernia and the reflux. I still have to have the ph test and the gastro said something about a scan and a check on the arteries. Has anyone else had this? Ive never been offered Urso.. acid so not sure I have bile reflux. Keep me posted on what is happening.

Hi, Poorlygirl.

I definitely have bile reflux - which can only really be diagnosed by an endoscopy. They just have to go look and see it.

My experience was that I had to stick *very* strictly to the special diet, no matter what. I haven't had things like coffee (even decaf), sodas, mint, chocoate, booze, etc. for over a year now. Doing all that and taking the PPI regularly has really helped.

I know the diet part is really tough, but maybe after awhile you, like I, will miss certain foods less and maybe have the chance to explore some new ones.

JJStark is right you have to maintain a very strict diet, and even then it's no guarantee that it's going to stop your symptoms. I went almost 5 days with minimal symptoms then out of the blue, it all started up again, and I have maintained the same diet that is fairly safe for me. The only thing I can contribute it to is drinking a beverage that had citric acid as a preservative. Since then, i've been a mess again. At times I think just the smell of certain foods sets off my stomach.
Most people with acid reflux don't fair to well with acid medicines. If they do it's only for a short period of time. Having a PH test is a good idea because you may actually have Low PH, if you do have bile reflux then the bile is what's causing you to have low ph. My GI said my ph was very low--a 2 he said normal range should be 7. My level was 2 last year I can only image what is now, since I'm on such a restricted diet. Eating anything raw is completely out for me.
Do you know what size hiatal hernia you have? I was told I had one that was smaller then a pin head, so I wouldn't have any symptoms from that, yet I am always tender under my sternum.
At this point I don't know what to think either. Look up Bilary Disorders, you might find some answers there. That's where I found that bile in the stomach may be coming from other sources, and not be related to the pyloric valve like most sites state. Bile can leak from the pancreas and the common bile duct ( the tube that carries the bile from the liver/gallbladder) into the pancreas then into the intestines. These leakages can be caused from gallbladder surgery. I am still waiting to find out where my bile is coming from. What irratates me the worse is that when the GI found excessive bile in my stomach at the time of the endoscopy he could have checked to see where it was coming from--but did he, NO--gosh forbid he goes outside that box he seems to live in.
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