Heartburn symptoms, diagnosis, treatments and causes – rightdiagnosis.com heartburn remedies in pregnancy

GERD is an acronym for gastroesophageal reflux disease. GERD is a very common condition. GERD results from the relaxation of the muscles around the entrance to the stomach, which allows a back flow of food, stomach acid and digestive enzymes up into the esophagus. This is called acid reflux.

Ongoing acid reflux can lead to inflammation of the esophagus and GERD. Typical symptoms of GERD include a burning sensation in the upper abdomen and chest, heartburn, and indigestion. Some people with GERD may also have a condition called hiatal hernia, which can aggravate symptoms of GERD.

Complications of untreated GERD include the development of esophageal ulcers, scarring of the esophagus, Barrett’s esophagus, and increased risk of developing esophageal cancer. For more details about symptoms and complications, see symptoms of GERD.


Diagnostic testing generally includes an endoscopy procedure. In this procedure, a special lighted instrument is inserted through the mouth and throat into the esophagus and stomach. This instrument, called an endoscope, takes pictures of the esophagus and stomach and/or sends images to a computer monitor.

Another test that might be performed is esophageal manometry. This test measures the pressure and contractions of the muscles of the esophagus. This can determine if the esophageal muscles around the entrance to the stomach are abnormally relaxed, which can allow stomach contents to back up into the esophagus. Other tests may include tests that measure the amount of stomach acid that is produced.

Many cases of GERD can be prevented with lifestyle changes, such as not smoking and not drinking acidic beverages or alcohol to excess. There are also many other ways to prevent acid reflux and control the severity of GERD. These include losing excessive weight, avoiding large meals and eating several small meals every day. It is also important to avoid eating late at night or up to two hours before bedtime. Clothing should be loose and not increase pressure on or constrict the abdomen. People with GERD may need to sleep in a semi-upright position, which allows gravity to help keep stomach acid from flowing up into the esophagus.

Treatment of GERD may also include the use of antacids and other medications. If GERD is caused by a hiatal hernia, treatment will include addressing the hiatal hernia. Hiatal hernia and severe cases of GERD may require hospitalization and surgery. For more information on treatment, refer to treatment of GERD. … more »

In GERD, the acidic stomach contents flow from the stomach up the esophagus toward the mouth. This results in typical symptoms that include indigestion ( heartburn) or epigastric pain that is burning in nature. This burning sensation can run … more symptoms » Heartburn: Treatments

Treatment plans for GERD are individualized depending on the underlying cause, the presence of coexisting diseases, the age and medical history of the patient, and other factors. Treatment generally involves a multifaceted plan that addresses the cause, minimizes the discomfort of heartburn and indigestion, and decreases the risk of developing complications, such as esophageal … more treatments » Heartburn: Misdiagnosis

Symptoms of GERD can also be similar to symptoms of a wide variety of other diseases and conditions. These include angina, indigestion, biliary colic, gastroenteritis, and gallstones. Other disease with … more misdiagnosis » Symptoms of Heartburn

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