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Digestive Disorders

Why am I waking up with bile in my throat

05/09/2007

Question:

Every so often I wake up with what I assume is bile burning my throat and tasting awful in my mouth. Since I am not sure why it is caused I try to treat it with antacids which seems to settle the bile back down into my stomach but my throat burns for a long time afterwards. I have tried to connect it to any certain food I eat or medicine I take but I have not been able to find any pattern. I have also tried to sleep almost sitting up and it doesn`t prevent the occurances either. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

Answer:

Hemangi Kale, MD

I think what you have is GERD or gastroesophageal reflux disease. You should avoid the following:

If symptoms are frequent you should see a gastroenterologist.

Julia Thornton, MD

The symptoms you are describing may actually be from acid reflux and may not be from bile reflux. If acid regurgitation is causing your symptoms, medications such as H2 blockers or proton pump inhibitors may relieve the symptoms. Some of these medications are available over the counter and others are only available by prescription. You may want to discuss your symptoms further with your healthcare provider to make sure you are taking the appropriate medication for your symptoms.

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Response by:

Hemangi  Kale, MD Hemangi Kale, MD
Formerly, Assistant Professor of Medicine
School of Medicine
Case Western Reserve University

Julia Gore Thornton, MD Julia Gore Thornton, MD
Assistant Professor of Medicine
School of Medicine
Case Western Reserve University