Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD): Symptoms and Causes
S g palaya, Bengaluru Apr 24, 2018
GERD happen when stomach acid frequently flows back into the esophagus, tube connecting your mouth and stomach. It is a mild acid reflux that occurs at least twice a week.
It is caused by frequent acid reflux. Its risk factors include:
- Connective tissue disorders
- Delayed stomach emptying
- Eating large meals
- Heartburn, usually after eating
- Chest pain
- Difficulty swallowing
- Regurgitation of food or sour liquid
- The sensation of a lump in the throat
- A chronic cough
- New or worsening asthma
- Disrupted sleep
The doctor will perform a physical exam and certain tests such as:
Upper endoscopy: In this test, doctor inserts a thin, flexible tube equipped with a light and camera down your throat to examine the inside of esophagus and stomach.
Ambulatory acid probe test: A monitor is placed in the esophagus to identify when and how long, stomach acid regurgitates there.
Esophageal manometry: It measures the rhythmic muscle contractions in the esophagus when you swallow.
X-ray of the upper digestive system: X-rays are taken after drinking a chalky liquid that coats and fills the inside lining of your digestive tract.
It is treated with medications first. The main treatment option for people with GERD are Proton Pump Inhibitors. Other options include:
H2 blockers: It decreases acid production.
Antacid: These counteract the acid in the stomach with alkaline chemicals.
Prokinetics: These help the stomach empty faster.
Fundoplication: In this surgeon sews the top of the stomach around the esophagus. It adds pressure to the lower end of the esophagus and is generally successful at reducing reflux.
Endoscopic procedures: This procedure uses stitches to tighten the sphincter muscle, and radiofrequency, which uses heat to produce small burns that help tighten the sphincter muscle.
LINX device: A ring of tiny magnetic beads is wrapped around the junction of the stomach and esophagus. It keeps the unction closed to refluxing acid, but weak enough to allow food to pass through.