A Word About GERD
If you suffer from heartburn two or more days a week, talk with your doctor about gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). If left untreated, it can lead to inflammation, ulcers of the esophagus, asthma, pneumonia, and a chronic cough.
Symptoms of GERD include pain just below the ribs and a sour, burning sensation in the upper abdomen, neck and mouth. It occurs when the acidic contents of the stomach repeatedly back-flow into the esophagus, causing heartburn, belching, and a chronic sore throat, to name just a few.
Sound unpleasant? It is. And it’s more common than you might think. The International Foundation for Functional Gastrointestinal Disorders estimates that between 5 and 7 percent of the world’s population is affected by GERD. And without proper diagnosis and treatment, the condition can create future health problems down the road.
The good news is that GERD is treatable. For most patients, relief comes with dietary changes or medication, although surgery sometimes is necessary. It’s important to note that GERD does not resolve itself, so visit your doctor if you think you may be suffering from it.
GMC Can Help:Bravo pH Study
The Bravo esophageal pH study is an outpatient procedure performed to measure the pH or amount of acid that comes up into the esophagus from the stomach during a 48-hour period. The test is used to help identify the cause of various symptoms, including: heartburn, gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), chest pain, asthma and chronic cough. To learn more, click here. For a physician referral to a gastroenterologist, click here.