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Gupta Gastro Digestive Health – new tips: GERD & Reflux

Hi Im Doctor Gupta Another common question asked by my patients
is concerning reflux or GERD, Gastro Esophageal Reflux Disease. GERD is essential when stomach contents whether
solid or liquid are pushed into the esophagus and that causes symptoms of heartburns, regurgitation,
and chest discomfort. Now how does GERD happen, what is the reason
why one experiences GERD? Usually the food goes through your mouth through
your food pipe and passes into your stomach. At the junction of the food pipe and the stomach,
is a band of fibers called lower esophageal sphincter. Which makes it like a one way passage.
So food can enter into the stomach but should not be coming back out. When this sphincter
is loose or incompetent, food can easily regurgitate into your food pipe causing inflammation,
ulceration, nausea, food coming into your mouth. Some people complain of sore throat,
difficulty in breathing and cough especially when they lie down.
So these are the typical symptoms of Gastro Esophageal Reflux Disease. Now what besides this can cause GERD? There
are various medicines for asthma, blood pressure, and even narcotics and sedatives, which can,
which can decrease, the tonicity or the strength of the lower esophageal sphincter and cause
these symptoms. Diagnosis is usual made by upper endoscopy,
where a flexible tube with a light at the end goes into your mouth, into your food pipe
and stomach to take pictures and biopsies to examine whats going on. Whether there is
any damage to the esophagus or not, and biopsies can be taken to prove if theres any changes
in the lining of the esophagus, and that can very safely and very effectively diagnose
the condition of GERD. There are other things which you should be
aware of. GERD can cause inflammation and also sometimes changes in the lining of the
stomach or esophagus which is called Barret’s esophagus. And this is a premalignant condition
and has to be screened reasonably frequently if you have that. So about close to ten percent
of people who have GERD, will have Barrets and close to ten percent of people who have
Barrets will have some sort of cancer of the esophagus. So almost close to 1% of people
who have regular heartburn or GERD can end up with having problems in the esophagus. So get your testing done, if you really think
you have these symptoms, another test that can be easily done is a barium swallow, which
is very good, but will not be able to biopsy the esophagus to look for any changes, like
Barrets . What are the other modifications, which I
prescribe my patients? Typically patients who have GERD, I advise them to loose weight,
don’t wear tight clothing, there should be nothing tight around their abdominal girth,
avoid coffee, chocolate, peppermint, alcohol, avoid spicy foods, don’t lie down immediately
after a big meal, if possible eat there to four hours before you lie down and elevate
the head of your bed by about three to six inches with this behavior modification and
the various medicines we have available, like antacids, H2 blockers like zantac, or proton
pump inhibitors like prilosec, aciphex, dexalant, pantaprazole, and nexium, they can help decrease
the acid in your stomach so there is no acid reflux in your food pipe causing these symptoms. So if you have any of these symptoms, like
night cough, clearing of the throat all the time, sore throat, chest pains, heartburns
and you feel food regurgitating up into your mouth, consult a gastroenterologist and be
tested adequately and be treated then. Thank you.

4 thoughts on “Gupta Gastro Digestive Health – new tips: GERD & Reflux

  1. Thanks Dr. Gupta for valuable advice and tips. It will surely help me to overcome my problem. please help me Dr. I work in night shifts and suffer from esophagities and gas trouble with rumbling noises in stomach. Due to which I'm feeling very embarrassed to attend meetings. Its a great hurdle for me in m career at present. I'm already taking pantodac capsule and pankreoflat tablet . Do u think this will cure my problem permanently or do I have to quit my job and look for a day shift job??

  2. How about this tip, collect the knowledge, and take the time to heal your stomach, instead of just slapping a band-aid on it.

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