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Author Topic: Anyone done a barium swallow?  (Read 732 times)

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Offline Hereismyusername

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Anyone done a barium swallow?
« on: December 27, 2012, 08:51:31 PM »
I think I might have an ulcer and my doc mentioned getting a barium swallow. Getting anything done at my gp's freaks me out. What can I expect during it? Is it quick?
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Offline Library girl

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Re: Anyone done a barium swallow?
« Reply #1 on: December 27, 2012, 09:44:36 PM »
I had one when I was little.  It's not a big deal! The stuff you have to drink tastes nasty, but you just drink it and then I got in this contraption which was like a standing MRI machine--only your stomach down to your feet are covered, so there was no claustrophobia.  You'll do fine :)
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Offline Library girl

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Re: Anyone done a barium swallow?
« Reply #2 on: December 27, 2012, 09:48:14 PM »
I jus realized that mine was a lower GI, and yours is probably an upper GI, but it's probably the same principle.
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Offline Hereismyusername

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Re: Anyone done a barium swallow?
« Reply #3 on: December 28, 2012, 07:55:22 AM »
Thanks library girl. Did it take awhile or was it pretty quick?
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Offline marc

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Re: Anyone done a barium swallow?
« Reply #4 on: December 28, 2012, 08:32:29 AM »
I had a barium swallow many years ago. It is pretty quick and painless. I have had many
EGD's and they are even quicker as you are asleep.
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Offline mollyfin

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Re: Anyone done a barium swallow?
« Reply #5 on: December 28, 2012, 09:38:25 AM »
I've had two and both times couldn't finish the stuff they make you drink - once I was sick with the flu and once had a huge ovarian mass squishing everything in my abdomen.  But that was the only problem - it took me forever to drink the part that I could, and I had to wait ages for it to work so I could go get the scan.  Both times were unexpected so I was panicking, freaking out and just having to sit there terrified.  But the scan itself?  Over in like ten minutes. 

Basically, if you don't get yourself worked up over it, it'll be easy.  Bring a book or something, though. 
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Offline Hereismyusername

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Re: Anyone done a barium swallow?
« Reply #6 on: December 28, 2012, 10:17:27 AM »
Thanks guys, I feel calmer about it now. Though it sounds like I'll be chugging the liquid as fast as possible!
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Offline mollyfin

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Re: Anyone done a barium swallow?
« Reply #7 on: December 28, 2012, 10:22:14 AM »
I've had two swallowed contrasts, one flavored with Crystal Light and one unflavored.  I think it depends on the contrast agent used; can't remember specifically what the first one was.  I didn't really find the taste unpleasant.  I mean, it wasn't GOOD, but it wasn't disgusting like I'd feared, either.  It felt like drinking unflavored Pepto Bismol.  Drinking it as fast as possible is a good call - the faster you finish, the faster they take you for the scan.  Which seems like it should be a bigger production after the length of time you have to wait for it! 
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Offline angrry

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Re: Anyone done a barium swallow?
« Reply #8 on: December 28, 2012, 02:22:00 PM »
I had a couple done quite a few years ago....the stuff was like a chalky milkshake..wasn't great...but also not terrible...they then did xrays...just make sure you drink lots of water after the barium can get you constipated
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Offline prayinforpeace

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Re: Anyone done a barium swallow?
« Reply #9 on: December 29, 2012, 12:31:55 AM »
I've had one and I didn't have a long wait or anything. I had to shoot back a little cup full of crystals first that they added water to and it made them fizz up. I had to swallow that really fast because it fizzed so quickly. The doc said it was to help inflate my stomach so they could see better. Then I had to drink that stuff, it's thick and chalky but doesn't really taste like much of anything. Then they took the pics in various positions, laying down and standing, and that was it. Nothing much to it.
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Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground apart from the will of your Father. And even the hairs of your head are all numbered. So don't be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows. - Matthew 10: 29-31

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