(Chronic Heartburn; Gastro-oesophageal Reflux Disease [GORD]; GERD; Reflux)
|Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease|
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- Problems with the nerves that control the LES
- Problems with LES muscle tone
- Impaired peristalsis—muscular contractions that propel food toward the stomach
- Abnormal pressure on the LES
- Increased relaxation of the LES
- Increased pressure within the abdomen
|Copyright © Nucleus Medical Media, Inc.|
- Alcohol use
- Exercising or strenuous activity immediately after eating
- Lying down, bending over, or straining after eating
- Prior surgery for heartburn
- Certain nervous system disorders
- In-dwelling nasogastric tube
- Caffeinated products
- Carbonated drinks
- Citrus fruits
- Fried foods
- Spicy foods
- Foods made with tomatoes, such as pizza, chili, or spaghetti sauce
- Calcium channel blockers
- Theophylline, bronchial inhalers, and other asthma medications
- Burning feeling that starts in the lower chest and moves up the throat—most common symptom
- Regurgitation—a feeling that food is coming back up
- Sour or bitter taste in the throat
- Sore throat
- Chronic laryngitis
- Chronic cough
- Feeling of a lump in the throat
- Waking up with a sensation of choking
- Difficulty swallowing
- Inflammation and scarring of the esophagus—esophagitis
- Bleeding and ulcers in the esophagus
- Narrowing of the esophagus—esophageal stricture
- Dental problems, which may occur because of the effect of stomach acid on tooth enamel
- Asthma attacks
- During sleep, acid refluxes from the stomach into the throat, then drains into the lungs—aspiration pneumonia
- Vomiting blood
- Black or tarry stools
- Precancerous condition that can lead to esophageal cancer—Barrett's esophagus
- Esophageal cancer
When Should I Call My Doctor?
When Should I Call for Emergency Medical Services?
- Squeezing or chest pressure
- Pain in the left shoulder, left arm, or jaw
- Trouble breathing
- Sweating, clammy skin
- Pain that starts during activity or stress
- Feeling of impending doom
- 24-hour pH monitoring—a probe is placed in the esophagus to keep track of the acid in the lower esophagus
- Manometry to test muscle strength in the lower esophagus
- Short trial of medications—success or failure of medication may help your doctor understand the cause
- Keep a food diary of what you eat and what the reaction is. Make gradual changes to your diet and record the results.
- Avoid foods and drinks that trigger digestive symptoms.
- Eat smaller portions.
- Allow at least 2-3 hours between meals and lying down, and exercise.
- If you are overweight, your doctor will advise you how to safely lose weight.
- If you smoke, your doctor will tell you how to successfully quit.
- Avoid alcohol or drink in moderation. Moderation is 1-2 drinks per day for men and one drink per day for women.
- Avoid belts and clothing that are too tight. This increases pressure on the abdomen.
- Elevate head of your bed 6-8 inches.
- Proton-pump inhibitors
- H-2 blockers
American Gastroenterological Association http://www.gastro.org
National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases http://www.niddk.nih.gov
Canadian Institute for Health Information http://www.cihi.ca
Health Canada http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca
Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed. Updated June 26, 2015. Accessed July 9, 2015.
Heartburn, gastroesophageal reflux (GER), and gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases website. Available at: http://www.niddk.nih.gov/health-information/health-topics/digestive-diseases/ger-and-gerd-in-adults/Pages/overview.aspx. Accessed July 9, 2015.
Heartburn. American Academy of Family Physicians Family Doctor website. Available at: http://familydoctor.org/familydoctor/en/diseases-conditions/heartburn.html. Updated March 2014. Accessed July 9, 2015.
Warning signs of a heart attack. American Heart Association website. Available at: http://www.heart.org/HEARTORG/Conditions/HeartAttack/WarningSignsofaHeartAttack/Warning-Signs-of-a-Heart-Attack%5FUCM%5F002039%5FArticle.jsp. Updated June 19, 2015. Accessed July 9, 2015.
9/30/2008 DynaMed's Systematic Literature Surveillance http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed: Jacobson BC, Moy B, Colditz GA, Fuchs CS. Postmenopausal hormone use and symptoms of gastroesophageal reflux. Arch Intern Med. 2008;168(16):1798-1804.
4/25/2014 DynaMed's Systematic Literature Surveillance http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed: Shimamoto T, Yamamichi N. No association of coffee consumption with gastric ulcer, duodenal ulcer, reflux esophagitis, and non-erosive reflux disease: A cross-sectional study of 8,013 healthy subjects in Japan. PLoS One. 2013;8(6):e65996.
- Reviewer: Daus Mahnke, MD
- Review Date: 02/2015 -
- Update Date: 07/09/2015 -