Gastroesophageal Reflux (gerd)
What is Gerd?
Gastroesophageal reflux is a physical condition in which acid from the stomach flows backward up into the esophagus. People will experience heartburn symptoms when excessive amounts of acid reflux into the esophagus. Many describe heartburn as a feeling of burning discomfort, localized behind the breastbone, that moves up toward the neck and throat.
Is it just a little HEARTBURN or something more serious?
Take this Richter Scale/Acid Test to see if youre a GERD sufferer and are taking the right steps to treat it.
1) Do you frequently have one or more of the following:
a) an uncomfortable feeling behind the breastbone that seems to be moving upward from the stomach?
b) a burning sensation in the back of your throat?
c) a bitter acid taste in your mouth?
2) Do you often experience these problems after meals?
3) Do you experience heartburn or acid indigestion two or more times per week?
4) Do you find that antacids only provide temporary relief from your symptoms?
5) Are you taking prescription medication to treat heartburn, but still having symptoms?
If you said yes to two or more of the above, you may have GERD. To know for sure, see your doctor or gastrointestinal specialist.
Ignoring persistent heartburn symptoms can lead to severe consequences:
Since the esophageal lining is sensitive to stomach contents, persistent and prolonged exposure to these contents may cause changes such as inflammation, ulcers, bleeding and scarring with obstruction. A precancerous condition called Barretts esophagus may also occur. Barretts esophagus causes severe damage to the lining of the esophagus when the body attempts to protect the esophagus from acid by replacing its normal lining with cells that are similar to the intestinal lining.
Source: American College of Gastroenterology
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