Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease in Arizona
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What is gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD)?
Gastroesophageal reflux disease, sometimes referred to as GERD, is the term to illustrate what we see as the consequence of the common experience of acid reflux. Acid reflux refers to a single episode or experience of acid regurgitation from the stomach into the esophagus, described as heartburn.
An individual is usually diagnosed with GERD when acid reflux occurs in mild cases one or fewer times per week or when moderate-to-severe acid reflux is experienced at minimum twice a week. Gastroesophageal reflux disease is known to present at any time in life, but it usually develops close to 40 years of age. When neglected, it has been known to eventually progress to a health concern referred to as Barrett’s esophagus. Should you think that you may be be suffering with GERD, we encourage you to schedule an appointment with a gastrointestinal (GI) specialist at Arizona Digestive Health in Phoenix, AZ as soon as possible.
What causes GERD?
Whenever we ingest food, it progresses through the esophagus and beyond the lower esophageal sphincter (LES) to then enter the stomach. When the LES is compromised, it can weaken and fail to stop stomach acid from moving back into the esophagus. Usually, there is not an individual reason that this happens repeatedly, still a person is at greater risk of having or developing GERD should you meet any of these criteria:
- Eat large meals late at night
- Being overweight
- Hiatal hernia (when the upper part of the stomach bulges into the diaphragm)
- Alcohol consumption
- Use of tobacco
- Eat raw onion or garlic
- Coffee consumption
- Scleroderma (a connective tissue disorder)
- Consume spicy foods
- Lie down often after eating
What are the major symptoms of GERD?
The primary signs of GERD are similar to acid reflux but may occur more frequently. Those symptoms may include:
- Unintentional weight loss
- Chest pain
- Difficulty swallowing
- Disrupted sleep
- Regurgitation of food or sour liquids
- Long-term cough
- Lump-in-the-throat sensation
We encourage you to schedule a meeting with a GI doctor at Arizona Digestive Health as soon as possible if you notice any of these symptoms regularly or are in pain, or if you take over-the-counter heartburn medication more often than twice within a week.
What are the available treatments for GERD?
Managing GERD might consist of lifestyle changes, medical intervention, or a combination of both. Treatment approaches to prevent or reduce GERD can in Phoenix, AZ patients include:
- LINX® device (magnetic beads wrapped around the junction of the stomach and esophagus)
- Sleep on an incline
- Tell your GI specialist about any medications you are taking
- Eat slowly and in moderation
- Non-prescription antacids
- Fundoplication (surgical procedure performed to wrap the stomach around the LES)
- Prescription-strength antacids (H-2 receptor blockers)
- Avoid smoking
- Lose excess weight
- Do not eat at least two hours before bedtime
- Minimize caffeine/coffee intake
- Do not consume foods and drinks likely to cause acid reflux (see the list above)
- Medication to strengthen the LES
- Remain awake and stand up after eating
Find relief from GERD
Gastroesophageal reflux disease is an extremely common problem affecting the day-to-day lives of many people. With professional treatment, however, it can be treated and its distressing symptoms alleviated. If you or a loved one lives with GERD, the physician-led network of gastroenterologists at Arizona Digestive Health is ready to help. We urge you to book a visit at our office to find treatment for GERD in Phoenix, AZ.
I had seen Dr Honan for years then moved to Goodyear. Recently started having gerd issues again and even though his practice is now in SCOTTSDALE I didn't hesitate to call him and he got me right. He took excellent care of me and I am forever grateful. Best dr ever.
I needed an upper endoscopy for my chronic GERD. He made the who process easy. He explained everything in a way I understood. On the day of the procedure I was nervous and he reassured me. It was the easiest thing ever! I knew I was in good hands. Then he helped me find a treatment regimen that improved my symptoms. Any time I need a scope or GI care. I will call him!
Dr Kanner and his staff were very courteous and respectful. They explained my 2 procedures very clearly and made me feel very comfortable before and after those procedures. I really appreciated the information about the need to take a fiber supplement and the list of high fiber heathy foods. My issues are so much better now.I’ve been Dr Kanner’s patient for 2 1/2 years and feel that I’ve received excellent care. He prescribed Dexilant that has really helped my GERD.
Always happy with my experience with Dr Faybush. She's professional with an approach that understands the realities of life. Has helped me stay on top of my GERD and hernia for years without pushing surgeries. Can't imagine going anywhere else.
Extremely knowledgable, patient and accommodating. Keeps himself updated on the latest surgical and medical techniques, and introduced me to a far better treatment for GERD than the standard Nissen. The TIF procedure he performed has been a life changer after suffering with acid reflux for 20 years. No ill effects, and I have absolutely no acid problems since the day the surgery was performed.