Medical Specialty >> Gastroenterology

Doctors Lounge - Gastroenterology Answers

Back to Gastroenterology Answers List

If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor or 911 immediately. Doctors Lounge ( does not recommend or endorse any specific tests, physicians, products, procedures, opinions, or other information that may be mentioned on the Site.

DISCLAIMER: The information provided on is designed to support, not replace, the relationship that exists between a patient/site visitor and his/her physician. Please read our 'Terms and Conditions of Use' carefully before using this site.

Date of last update: 10/15/2017.

Forum Name: Gastroenterology Topics

Question: 15 yr athlete son/reflux/wt loss/exhausted/headaches/jt pain

 Sadie - Wed Mar 01, 2006 11:20 am

Our 15 yr old athletic son (plays starter on Basketball team currently), has been gradually becoming more & more sickly over the course of the past year and a half. He is a very easy-going, friendly, fun, active, and intelligent. Our family consists of one 12 yr old brother, dad & mom in the home. We do most everything together and have a lot of fun for the most part. Logan works part-time with his dad doing upkeep & renovations of our apartment building.

He has taken a downhill decline over the past year or more. He was tested for mono Dec '04 & Aug '05, and has been gradually experiencing more & more of these symptoms:

Exhaustion (tires easily, worsening especially over last year)
Weight Loss (10 lbs since Dec. ’05, Height 5'9", now 120 lbs)
Chest Pain (sometimes severe especially under breast bone, with & without exertion. Has radiated sometimes to back)
Joint Pain(especially neck, low back, mid back – goes to chiro frequently for pain relief. Helps some)
Acid Reflux (in past month or two has become severe & has worsened to dailiy, entire day, sleep affected)
Headaches (mostly tension on back of neck, temples & behind eyes)
Pupil’s dilated 1/2 to 3/4 of size of iris (seems like they don’t get much smaller w/flashlight in dark room)
Bad Taste in Mouth
Abdominal pain & Indigestion (occasionally, affects eating at times)
Dry & itchy skin (some)
Dry eyes & lips (often)
Cold Hands & Feet (Very frequent)
mildly swollen glands (sometimes)
Muscle soreness & pain (knots in shoulders, upper back)
Jaw Pain (some but possibly from orthodontia)
Hiccups (sometimes)
Good appetite/Very Hungry (often)
Severe acne (for 2 years, has gotten better since Minocycline use. Pitting)
Sleeping difficulty – trouble falling asleep. Not getting enough at times.
Gets winded easily in sports & during exercise (Pulmonolog test-blew 72. 70 considered not passing.)
School affected greatly by exhaustion & pain
Losing some interest in regular activities (unusual)
Tinnitus (had for a long time)
Sensitive to light & noise (somewhat, has had ears tested & found to have above normal hearing ability)
Brain Fog & Concentration difficulty (school is suffering)

Tests Run: EEG, EKG, Chest X-rays for Pneumonia & other, CAT from waist up, three mono tests in 1-1/2 yrs, Thyroid, many CBCs & extra bloodwork. All normal, no anemia.

He was taken to ER twice for severe chest pains with exertion, admitted the second time to Children's Hospital in Indy. He was put on chest monitor's for 24 hours, had battery of tests. Suggested it was GERD. All else was normal.

I believe he possibly has more than one problem he's dealing with. However, it could be all related. He tells us that he doesn't feel anything like he did a year ago. Before basketball started in October '05, he said that he can't imagine being able to practice & have games with the drained feeling and exhaustion he's had. He doesn't exhibit signs of depression. His appetite is very good, but has stomach pain in the upper area just 2" or so below the breastbone. He sleeps well, but has some difficulty falling asleep. He needs lots of sleep and is able to get 10-12 hours each night. He awakes tired whether getting up early or late.

At times, he feels better. For a short burst he plays some basketball in the sunshine with his younger brother, but it's like the bottom drops out. A month or two ago, he chased his brother around with a squirt gun and had to stop after 3-4 minutes with no energy at all. Sometimes he describes taking an empty breath of air. He describes it as taking a big breath, the breath goes nowhere and doesn't feel cleansing, and then he releases his breath like normal. Hasn't had this happen in the past month however. For a year or two, he hesitates & has a strange puffing sound when he exhales. This is a minor thing really and is just something I noticed while driving together in the car. He feels that strong scents like perfumes, hairsprays, odors, smoke are very bothersome and momentarily take his breath away.

We've placed him on a very strict allergy FREE diet which doesn't include gluten, milk, grains, corn, oats, soy, sugar, cokes, etc.. on our own for the past 10 days. We haven't seen any kind of reaction whether increase or decrease in symptoms. He eats 4-5 times each day and doesn't skimp. He has a very good appetite when his stomach doesn't hurt. He is scheduled to see a new MD on Friday.

Please consider offering any observations, suggestions of possible diagnosis or tests recommended. I would certainly appreciate help with what to ask the MD on Friday. We would be so thankful for your help as we are feeling very helpless these days...

Love & Peace,

 babygirl8679 - Fri Mar 03, 2006 8:26 am

Maybe you should ask the doctor about diabetes or gallbladder problems I experienced alot of the same problems and that is the route I am currently on. Hope this helps and I hope your son feels better soon.

| Check a doctor's response to similar questions

Are you a Doctor, Pharmacist, PA or a Nurse?

Join the Doctors Lounge online medical community

  • Editorial activities: Publish, peer review, edit online articles.

  • Ask a Doctor Teams: Respond to patient questions and discuss challenging presentations with other members.

Doctors Lounge Membership Application

Tools & Services: Follow DoctorsLounge on Twitter Follow us on Twitter | RSS News | Newsletter | Contact us