Join host Halena Gazelka, M.D., pain medicine specialist and medical director for Mayo Clinic Public Affairs, on the Mayo Clinic Q&A podcast. From complex or serious conditions like cancer and heart disease to the latest news on research and wellness, Dr. Gazelka asks the questions and gets easy-to-understand answers from Mayo Clinic experts.

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Nov 23, 2019

Treating and Preventing GERD: Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease

By Margaret Shepard, @Margaret_Marie


Gastroesophageal reflux disease, also known as GERD, affects an estimated 1 in 5 American adults. GERD occurs when stomach acid flows back into the esophagus from the stomach. The lining of your esophagus is more delicate than the lining of your stomach, so acid in your esophagus causes a burning sensation. While many people experience reflux from time to time, GERD is defined by reflux occurring weekly. Most people can manage the discomfort of GERD with lifestyle changes and over-the-counter medications. But some people with GERD may need stronger medications or surgery to ease symptoms.

On this Mayo Clinic Radio program segment, Dr. Jeffrey Alexander, a Mayo Clinic gastroenterologist, discusses GERD treatment and prevention.

I hv gerd. For the last 5 months I’ve been short of breath. Coughing wheezing, sore throat, bad taste, hoarse, but very hard to breathe. This morning the acid coming up into my mouth was horrible. I feel very weak. Muscle fatigue. Wld go to ER. But it’s a 2hr drive. Does anyone know if it wld do me any good to go to ER. Or if any test they could do today to test for acid in lungs?

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