Acid Reflux Disease Symptoms, Causes, Tests, And Treatments

AskMayoExpert. Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) (adult). Rochester, Minn.: Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research; 2014. The procedure involves passing a thin, pressure-sensitive tube through your nose, down your throat and esophagus, an into your stomach. You will likely be sitting upright when the tube is inserted. Vegetables are naturally low in fat and sugar, and they help reduce stomach acid. Good options include green beans, broccoli, asparagus, cauliflower, leafy greens, potatoes, and cucumbers.

For people who experience heartburn or indigestion infrequently, perhaps in association with occasional food and drink triggers, OTC treatments to reduce the acidity of the stomach contents are available. A few people have GERD that doesn’t respond to treatment. Or they may have other concerning symptoms, such as weight loss , difficulty swallowing, anemia , or black stools. If you’re one of them, you may need any of the following tests. Keep the diary for at least a week. It’s helpful to track your foods for a longer period if your diet varies. You can use the diary to identify specific foods and drinks that affect your GERD.

Pro-motility drugs are most effective when taken 30 minutes before meals and again at bedtime. They are not very effective for treating either the symptoms or complications of GERD. Therefore, the pro-motility agents are reserved either for patients who do not respond to other treatments or are added to enhance other treatments for GERD. click here now A second type involves the application of radio-frequency waves to the lower part of the esophagus just above the sphincter. The waves cause damage to the tissue beneath the esophageal lining and a scar (fibrosis) forms. The scar shrinks and pulls on the surrounding tissue, thereby tightening the sphincter and the area above it.

Another complication that may arise is called Barrett esophagus and occurs in approximately eight to 15% of people with acid reflux. Long-term exposure of the esophagus to stomach acid causes changes at the cellular level leading to dysplasia. Long-term use of antacids, however, can result in side effects, including diarrhea , altered calcium metabolism (a change in the way the body breaks down and uses calcium ), and buildup of magnesium in the body. Too much magnesium can be serious for patients with kidney disease If antacids are needed for more than 2 weeks, a doctor should be consulted.

Heartburn pain is sometimes mistaken for the pain associated with heart disease or a heart attack , but there are differences. Exercise may aggravate pain resulting from heart disease , and rest may relieve the pain. Heartburn pain is less likely to be associated with physical activity But you can’t tell the difference, so seek immediate medical help if you have any chest pain. X-ray of your upper digestive system. X-rays are taken after you drink a chalky liquid that coats and fills the inside lining of your digestive tract. The coating allows your doctor to see a silhouette of your esophagus, stomach and upper intestine. You may also be asked to swallow a barium pill that can help diagnose a narrowing of the esophagus that may interfere with swallowing.

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