Frequently Asked Questions
Most people will experience heartburn when the lining of the esophagus comes in contact with gastric acidity.
2. What are the symptoms of Heartburn?
Symptoms of heartburn are defined as a rising, burning sensation behind the collar and throat caused by passage of stomach acid into the esophagus.
3. What are some symptoms of acid reflux disease?
The major symptoms of acid reflux disease are:
- Regurgitation of gastric acid or sour contents into the mouth.
- Difficult and painful swallowing.
4. What is the treatment for heartburn?
Changes in lifestyle and diet should be the first step. Over the counter antacid and H2 blockers are the second step. If you continue to have symptoms or need to take frequent antacid consult your doctor for evaluation and prescription of medications.
5. Whom do I consult?
You should consult a Doctor and a Gastroentrologist.
6. Can GERD lead to Cancer?
Yes. But cancer of the esophagus secondary to GERD is very rare. Amongst the risk factors for adenocarcinoma of the esophagus are long-standing severe heartburn, Barrett's esophagus and obesity.
7. Can this cancer be prevented?
Yes. If you are suffering from heartburn you should take it seriously. If you have any of the symptoms you should see a Gastroentrologist immediately. If you are known to have Barrett's oesophagus you should have regular surveillance for possible early cancer detection.
8. What is the difference between heartburn and acid reflux disease?
Acid reflux disease is the disease and heartburn is its most common symptom. Frequent heartburn that disrupts one's lifestyle suggests the diagnosis of acid reflux disease.