I've had this nasty for awhile now and have tried repetedly since 1980 to get it identified or at least, properly treated... Last friday night I got a NEW surprise...I was sitting on the sofa watching the boob tube... Not smoking, not eating, and not drinking anything.... Suddenly, I could not breathe...Like I had choked on something... I could not talk, or swallow and it was a bit hairy....I ended up on the floor on my knees... It looked bad. My face was red and I could only manage enough air to keep from passing out. It finally passed after 10-15 minutes, I wasn't really to keen on keeping track of the time! Ok, that was weird...So, I figured it was a fluke. It happened again saturday night. Same exact circumstances... I managed to get to the kitchen and hang on to the table for dear life, literally... Now it's no longer weird, it's become life threatening! (it already was, but I had NO idea) I managed to get myself together and I did a real quick internet search.... I then went to the ER.... I spent 4 days, and LOT of tests and blood letting ... I had CT scans, Xrays, and even Ultrasound tests... Head to toes! I was put into the cardiac care unit... I had every orifice probed and probed again... I had an endoscopy, I even had a stress test.... End result: Only the endoscopy showed where stomach acid, spewed up from an esophageal ulceration and one in the stomach, which had been really irritated... I take ranitiine/Zantac ( for years now) and eat Gaviscon like candy... I have been having bad headaches, so I took Excedrin, and for body aches I took Aleve. Both are NSAIDS and almost killed me! Evidently, with gastric problems, those are 2 of the WORST things you can do.... Who Knew? The acid reacted like a volcanic eruption and shot up into the esopahgus...they also hit the bronchial areas...They reacted in an autonomous reflexive action and shut off my airway entirely. I was lucky, X2! The bill will be nearly $70,000! But at least they did confirm that I have a hiatal hernia...But it's transitional ( meaning IF I treat it with care and respect, it will disappear!) No more ranitidine or zantac anymore now.... Now I am on a babyfood diet to heal all the damages.... No salt, little sugar if any ,and they were yelling at me for smoking 2 packs a day, ( I once was a 4+ pack a day smoker), for 41 years now... 2 separate chest x-rays showed I was as clear as a newborn baby...Go figure ( must be in the exhaling?) All the tests came back clear and nothing bad happening...I was told I was in better shape (internally anyway) than the 30 year old Asian Dr. and the Dr.'s doing the tests! A word to the wise: DON"T do what I did, you may not be so lucky!