Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD)
GERD is present when stomach contents (acid) move up into your esophagus. Although it often causes dyspepsia (heartburn) it can be present without any intestinal symptoms. It may be a cause of chronic cough, hoarseness or throat irritation. Less commonly it can lead to a precancerous condition called Barrett’s Esophagus.
Gastroesophageal Reflux Medical Therapy
- Normalize weight
- Avoid aspirin
- Avoid lying down or exercise immediately after eating
- Eat a high-protein, low-fat diet. Specifically avoid foods that aggravate reflux. For many patients these foods include chocolate, coffee, tea, alcohol, sweets, citrus fruits and juices, highly spiced foods, fatty foods, and peppermint.
- Eat small frequent meals and avoid a large late evening meal.
- Elevate the head of the bed with blocks, 6 to 10 inches.
- Avoid bedtime eating including beverage intake. Eat your last meal of the day at least 3 hours before bed time.
- Cease smoking
- Liquid antacid, 15 ml (1 tablespoon) as needed for heartburn up to 4 times a day.
- Other medications as prescribed to reduce or block acid secretion from the stomach. These include H2 blockers (Cimetidine, Ranitidine) andproton pump inhibitors (Omeprazole and others)
- See your physician if you are not better