It took 10 years and almost as many doctors before I finally got the achalasia diagnosis. I had Heller Myotomy with partial funduplication in April 2006. It has been a success. I still need water with every meal and some foods are very difficult to swallow. (i.e.; raw unpeeled carrots & apples, steak, etc.)In answer to one of the persons who replied, I have noticed it most definately gets worse when under stress. In fact sometimes, during those times, I still cannot get food down, or if I do it sticks and has to come back up! I too, get the chest pain/ muscle spasms, and like the other respondent, it wakes me up at night. I drink ice water, eat soda crackers and if it gets too bad take a Diltiazem precribed by my doctor. I try not to take these unless very neccessary, as they are a med usually prescribed to treat angina (chest pain in heart patients). At my last doctor visit, he precribed Dexilant for reflux (taken before the evening meal). Seems to help some with the night spasms, but not completely. You have to pro-active in figuring out the triggers for these. Mine seem better if I avoid coffee and soda. I've switched to green tea, but usually only one cup, as sometimes two will set off the spasms. (and yea they really do hurt!!) I too recommend finding a great surgeon that is familiar with this procedure! I had mine in Denver, Colorado, but unfortunately, my surgeon had to retire!