Acid reflux and heartburn: common causes and treatment

Reflux refers to the movement of material from the stomach up into the oesophagus through a muscle that connects the.


Reflux refers to the movement of material
from the stomach up into the oesophagus through a muscle that connects the two. That muscle
is called the lower oesophageal sphincter. Usually it remains tight but when it becomes
loose, the stomach contents will migrate back upwards.
Usually that’s acid contents moving up but sometimes it can be non-acid including food
or including air from time to time. It’s usually occurring because of an incompetence
or ineffectual contraction of that sphincter but some individuals will have a delay in
emptying of the stomach so food sits around in the stomach for longer and as a consequence
is more likely to come back up. You may come across the term hiatus hernia
which refers to the stomach sitting slightly higher up in the chest wall or sorry, in the
chest cavity, and that then increases the likelihood of reflux again through an interference
of functioning of the sphincter muscle. Some individuals have what is referred to
as a hiatus hernia which refers to movement of the stomach up into the chest area. That
also renders the sphincter muscle competent or ineffective hence predisposing to reflux. People who complain of acid reflux will suffer
a variety of symptoms. In the short-term, they may complain of a burning sensation behind
their breastbone. They may complain of a belching feeling bringing up air or regurgitation of
food. They may have an acidic taste in the mouth. They may experience a feeling of sickness
or nausea. They can also experience what we call atypical symptoms or unusual symptoms
such as a cough, particularly at night when acid is coming back up and then spills up
into the lung causing spasm or coughing. If symptoms have gone on for a while, it may
have resulted in a complication of acid reflux and the classic one is a formation of a stricture
or narrowing of the lower end of the oesophagus in which case they may complain of difficulty
swallowing food, it may get stuck, or they may complain of pain when they swallow. Acid reflux is treated in a variety of different
ways usually split up into three. There are lifestyle measures that individuals can engage
in themselves such as adjusting their diet and eating patterns, avoiding eating late
at night, avoiding large meals, chewing their food properly and slowly, washing it down. There are certain foods that might precipitate
symptoms so things like caffeine and alcohol, fatty foods, sometimes spicy foods. These
are all known to precipitate symptoms. Drinking carbonated or fizzy drinks can also aggravate
symptoms. There’s a whole range of lifestyle measures. The second tier is usually is then the introduction
of medication usually to reduce the amount of acid being produced in the stomach. Classic
drugs in that category include drugs like omeprazole, which are referred to as proton pump
inhibitors. These can be combined with other drugs that stimulate the contraction of the
stomach to empty so the combination of the two reduces the amount of acid available to
reflux back up. When all those measures have failed then surgery
is often an option in a in a minority of patients – probably about 5 or 10% at most. Recently, there have been some advances in
surgical treatments in particular in the management of reflux problems. The classic treatment
over the years has been what is referred to as a Nissen fundoplication and that involves
wrapping the upper part of the stomach in an axis usually around 270 degrees which then
enhances the sphincter muscle and thus reduces the amount of acid reflux coming back up.
But more recently, we’ve seen the emergence of a device called a LINX device which is
a magnet which is attached around the outer part of the oesophagus. It’s done surgically
under a keyhole technique under full anaesthetic and done by a surgeon. What it basically does
is attach itself as a magnet that is made to measure on the outside of the oesophagus
so that when food goes down through the oesophagus it pushes open the magnet and goes into the
stomach and then when the food is resting in the stomach the magnet opposes itself an
acts as a sphincter. That device is called a LINX device. It’s becoming increasingly
obvious that that is beneficial when selected in the right individual.

44 thoughts on “Acid reflux and heartburn: common causes and treatment”

  1. I just Google the lower esphophical sphincter that's the exact ate my fear and panic is in when I have anxiety or panic.

  2. I was suffered from GBS syndrome in 2007, after this i am suffering from GEARD till now 2019. Try many medicines : Omeprazole, Pantoprazole, Ranitidine, domperidone & Metoclopramide, unienzyme.
    But PPI provide temperary relief. I have fear from surgery & after surgery it will be cure or remain same.
    Thats my query.

  3. Thank you Sir for this nice video. In Ayurveda, the treatment of acid reflux is possible without any side effects. Planet Ayurveda offers Digestion Support Capsules and Amalaki Rasayan Capsules which are quite effective in the treatment of acid reflux.

  4. I do not have spicy, smoking nor alcohol. Am having medicine too but still acid reflux is not healing what is happening please suggest me

  5. Thank you for sharing this knowledgeable information with us. In Ayurveda, gastritis can be treated naturally without any side effects. Planet Ayurveda offers Digestion Support Capsules and Vara Churna which are really very effective for the treatment of gastritis.

  6. The heartburn is the worse, it's so scary, especially when it happens at night and I wake up in a rush. The first time I thought my heart was failing lol, I'm 22 so I went straight to the hospital. I was diagnosed with edematous esophagitis.

  7. This is confusing and there are different opinions between drs here and the usa. The mechanism of acid reflux is viewed as not so much as too much acid but the reverse a decline in the acid resulting in a growth of harmful gut bacteria. The bacteria then feeds on starches eaten resulting in increase in abdominal pressure… more gas and as the acid level is reduced the Les stays open hence the reflux. Treating with antacids is not benefical as it increases the alkalinity of the stomach. Stomach ph should be 1-3 if not food isn't being digested properly. So what is the mechanism that causes heartburn or gerd? Clearly you are advocating the antacid approach but are you on automatic mode and not thinking things through?

  8. Hello Dr. i am suffering with a strange substance seems to be coming up from my stomach all the way to my face. i'm not getting any answers from the Nhs only i have got gall stones and a Hiatas Hernia the substance is preventing me to eat and drink. i have given up smoking and drinking alcohol. a GP said the substance in my face/mouth/ Stomach is water brash is there anyway to stop producing it ? thank's Peter

  9. Sir , I am 35 years makesince 5 years onwards suffering with left side chest pain comes up and goes, is it heart problem, one time I Consult Gastroenterologist he said splinter loose is it ?

  10. Sir ji i had a question. I am a marathon runner and work night shifts. I have hitius hernia I sleep 5hrs. I have been told by my doc I shd stop running want ur advice.

  11. Itโ€™s like on my top middle left ab muscle been like this for 2 months . I got cat scan there was nothing

  12. I have huge acid reflux and heartburn problem…. And Dr said my valves got loose in the food pipe…. When endoscopy was done…. But didn't suggest any remedy…. Is it surgery….

  13. Why do doctors talk of surgery? only worried about money or costly treatments, simple fix, high acid can be controlled by staying alkaline, high acid is most likely a cause of disease or bacterial infestation leading to "disease"ulcers, Crohn's, colitis , cancers Etc… Bacteria/cancer can not live in alkaline environments. Medical and food Administration work together to cash out… Everything can be fixed with diet, any doctor not telling you that is a quack.

  14. Helo sir i am the patien pancrse my serum levels is to higher acidty and. Gas heart burn etc problems wt can. I do sir plz reply me.

  15. So confusing, some Dr's says it's due to low stomach acid that the sphincter will not close. I started the acid inhibitor a week ago and my symptom gotten worst, I stopped the med and took apple cider-vinegar mix with water to increase my stomach acid and the symptom stopped right away. So, I'm confused, is it because of high or low acid in the stomach that gives the pain?????? even bad breath?

  16. My causes = Sugar + Dairy + Gluten + Soy + Some Spices. ๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿ˜…๐Ÿ˜ฆ๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿ˜…๐Ÿ˜ฆ๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿ˜…๐Ÿ˜ฆ๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿ˜…๐Ÿ˜ฆ

  17. My sister was suffering from Heartburn. It is mainly due to the formation of the gastric reflux into the esophagus (Food pipe). She used various medicines got no relief from Heartburn. Then she heard about Planet Ayurveda. She started to Acidity Care Pack of Planet Ayurveda for ayurvedic treatment of heartburn (acid reflux). It includes herbal products such as Amalaki Rasayan, Digestion Support, and Heartburn Capsules.and she got relief from Heartburn.

  18. With respect Sir , Medication and surgery is such an extreme way to deal with any health issues . Taking responsibility for our own good health care is a much more gentle and natural answer Thank you for your time and energy

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