Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease: More Than Heartburn

While many Canadians experience occasional heartburn or regurgitation, these symptoms are frequent in persons with GERD who are not receiving adequate treatment. Acid reflux is responsible for the majority of the symptoms and/or damage to the esophagus. Approximately 13-29% of Canadians experience recurring GERD symptoms. GERD has a significant negative impact on wellbeing and quality of life. We are report one such case in a patient with a history of reflux disease.

how can gerd cause sore throat

The doctor may use tiny tweezers (forceps) in the endoscope to remove a small piece of tissue for biopsy. A biopsy viewed under a microscope can reveal damage caused by acid reflux and rule out other problems if no infecting organisms or abnormal growths are found. H2 blockers, such as cimetidine (Tagamet HB), famotidine (Pepcid AC), nizatidine (Axid AR), and ranitidine (Zantac 75), impede acid production. They are available in prescription strength and over the counter. These drugs provide short-term relief, but over-the-counter H2 blockers should not be used for more than a few weeks at a time.

In some patients with severe symptoms or complications of acid reflux, surgery can be performed for treatment. If appropriate, your physician will discuss this option with you. In addition to dietary and behavioral adjustments, medications are often part of an anti-reflux program. Some are available without a prescription, while others require a prescription.

If the acid backs up as far as the throat and larynx, the sleeper will wake up coughing and choking. If the acid only backs up as far as the esophagus the symptom is usually experienced as heartburn. If you’re a dedicated brusher and flosser but your dentist is still filling cavities, tells you your tooth enamel is eroding, or notices discoloration, acid reflux may be to blame. “Even a small amount of acid reflux making its way up from the esophagus to your throat or mouth while lying down can impact tooth enamel,” says Dr. Dellon. It’s a good idea to avoid eating these foods if you have acid reflux.

These tests may include an upper GI series, an upper GI endoscopy, and 24-hour pH monitoring. Other less frequently performed tests include the Bernstein test and esophageal manometry. Most people refer to GERD as heartburn, although you can have it without heartburn.

To do this, use blocks, books or bricks underneath the legs at the head of the bed. The elevation should be 4-6 inches or so, but not high enough that you will slide down when sleeping.

Other possible symptoms include a dry cough, asthma, toothache, and a husky or hoarse voice. These occur if the stomach juices get into the windpipe and irritate the airways, or get into the mouth and attack the teeth. If the stomach is stretched a lot – for instance after a large meal – the sphincter (circular muscle) at the entrance to the stomach might temporarily loosen. Gas or stomach contents might leak up into the food pipe as a result. The sphincter may also sometimes open for no apparent reason.

This scarring can narrow the esophagus, eventually interfering with your ability to swallow. IMPORTANT! Never ignore pain in your chest.

In more severe cases, it can lead to the constriction of the throat, nausea, vomiting, respiratory failure, shock, and even death. For many people, reflux occurs most often at night and sets up the irritation that continues to bother during the daytime. One of the most important things you can do is to elevate the head of your bed.

Finally I ended up with a Nissen Fundoplication in 2003. They said it was a temporary fix. However, this doesn’t mean I’m “cured” of my GERD. I still have to use antacids on the rare occasions that I eat too close to bedtime or have too large of a meal.

In addition to sore throat, chronic and severe acid reflux that goes unmanaged can lead to a rare but serious condition called Barrett’s esophagus. This occurs when the lining of your esophagus changes its composition to resemble the lining of your intestines.

However, many ENT specialists insist that continued redness is very likely due to reflux. Thus, the issue of how to diagnose and treat patients with ENT symptoms who do not respond to PPIs is a controversial one.

This examination revealed no injuries related to intubation; however, it did show inflammation of the pharynx consistent with the changes seen in GERD. An endoscopy performed by gastroenterology also revealed an acute exacerbation of reflux disease. Once the patient was adequately treated, these symptoms disappeared in approximately 6 weeks. Finally, it is unclear whether refluxed liquid from the stomach that is.

Top Reflux Laryngitis Related Articles

Learn about treatments, prevention methods, and other causes of chronic coughing. Children may also be sensitive to certain foods that affect the valve between the food pipe and the stomach. Reducing acid reflux reduces the risk of its complications, too.

how can gerd cause sore throat

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January 30, 2015

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