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Could Nexium Be Causing Stomach Aches?
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My 14 yr old DS has been gluten free since celiac diagnosis last July. The endoscopy also revealed esophagitis and he's been taking Nexium 40mg ever since. He's too tired, depressed and has a constant dull stomach ache that spikes in pain after every meal. Every meal! I know he is gluten free (always everyone's first suspicion) because our house is gluten free and he's been house-bound now for weeks, unable to attend school and barely able to get much homework done here.

Of course he is depressed! His life is on hold right now. We just did another round with the pediatric GI and his regular pediatrician. All tests were negative for things like cytomegalo virus, thyroid, infections, and even a breathe test for lactose intolerance. Clean bill of health but the kid can't function.

So here's my question. If Nexium reduces stomach acid, isn't it also reducing digestive enzymes? Is this something that can cause stomach aches? Should I be giving him enzymes?

I don't think the stomach aches could be causing the fatigue. But if we can lob off one issue then maybe we can zero in on others.

Any thoughts?

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Perhaps he has another intolerance in addition to gluten? Dairy (would not show up on lactose intolerance test) is a very common intolerance for Celiacs. Also, if you're substituting all of the gluten food with gluten free specialty replacements, they can be very hard on the system in large quantities for some people. Some people also develop intolerances to rice which is the staple in most gluten free replacement products.

I could imagine that the Nexium could cause stomach discomfort.

Are all of his body products, shampoos, etc gluten free? Is he using any art supplies? If he's lying on the couch a lot has it gotten a good cleaning since the last time gluten was consumed on it? Are there any pets and do their foods contain gluten?

I hope you figure things out soon.

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My 14 yr old DS has been gluten free since celiac diagnosis last July. The endoscopy also revealed esophagitis and he's been taking Nexium 40mg ever since. He's too tired, depressed and has a constant dull stomach ache that spikes in pain after every meal. Every meal! I know he is gluten free (always everyone's first suspicion) because our house is gluten free and he's been house-bound now for weeks, unable to attend school and barely able to get much homework done here.

Of course he is depressed! His life is on hold right now. We just did another round with the pediatric GI and his regular pediatrician. All tests were negative for things like cytomegalo virus, thyroid, infections, and even a breathe test for lactose intolerance. Clean bill of health but the kid can't function.

So here's my question. If Nexium reduces stomach acid, isn't it also reducing digestive enzymes? Is this something that can cause stomach aches? Should I be giving him enzymes?

I don't think the stomach aches could be causing the fatigue. But if we can lob off one issue then maybe we can zero in on others.

Any thoughts?

I am so sorry he is going through this. I went to the website because of course the first thing is to check gluten status of course, that was good news. However Nexium can have the side effects that you mentioned. It also said that the usual course to heal the problems is 6 to 8 weeks. Have you been back to the doctor about this? Maybe there is something else he could take instead that might not have that effect? I know when I get glutened that one dose of pepto bismal seems to help a great deal. Perhaps you could ask your doctor if it might be worth trying. I don't know what other meds he is on so I hesitate to tell you to just give him some. What follows in quotes is the info from the Nexium web site.

"Does NEXIUM contain gluten?

No. Gluten is not an ingredient in NEXIUM. In fact, we require certification from all our suppliers confirming that each particular inactive ingredient does not contain gluten. We have obtained certificates from all current suppliers of the inactive ingredients in NEXIUM capsules that confirm there is no gluten. Therefore, NEXIUM is gluten free.

NEXIUM is for the treatment of frequent, persistent heartburn symptoms due to acid reflux disease. These symptoms typically occur on 2 or more days per week despite treatment and diet change.

For many people, NEXIUM can also heal damage to the esophagus caused by acid reflux. This damage can occur over time, when acid from the stomach erodes (wears away) the lining of the esophagus. Only a doctor can determine if you have this condition, called erosive esophagitis. Most erosions heal in 4 to 8 weeks. Your results may vary.

Side effects with NEXIUM include headache, diarrhea, and abdominal pain. Symptom relief does not rule out other serious stomach conditions."

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