GERD (Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease) FAQs
Reviewed by Jay W. Marks, MD
Take the GERD (Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease) Quiz First! Before reading this FAQ, challenge yourself and
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Q:GERD is the back up of stomach acid into the esophagus. True or False?
A:True. GERD (also known as gastroesophageal reflux disease, acid reflux, and/or heartburn) is a condition in which the acidified liquid content of the stomach backs up into the esophagus.
Q:Babies and children do not develop GERD. True or False?
A:False. People of all ages can have GERD.
Q:People with GERD should avoid foods and beverages such as what?
A:People with GERD should avoid foods and beverages such as mint, tomatoes, mustard, caffeine, alcoholic drinks, pepper, oranges, grapefruit, and vinegar.
Q:Reflux is an alternative term for what?
A:Here, the term "reflux" refers to esophageal reflux, which is another term for regurgitation.
Q:What is the cure for GERD?
A:There is no cure for GERD.
Q:GERD is diagnosed by blood tests. True or False?
A:False. While a completely accurate diagnostic test for GERD does not exist, GERD may be diagnosed or evaluated by a trial of treatment, endoscopy, biopsy, X-ray, 24 hour esophageal acid testing, and esophageal acid perfusion.
Q:Barrett's esophagus is a potentially serious complication of GERD. True or False?
A:True. Barrett's esophagus is a potentially serious complication of chronic GERD, primarily in white males. With Barrett's esophagus, cells of the tissue lining the esophagus -- the tube that carries food from the mouth to the stomach--take on an abnormal appearance, resembling cells of the lining of the intestine. In a small proportion of patients, the Barrett's tissue becomes precancerous and then cancerous.
Q:Who is most likely to suffer from GERD?
A:Obesity, pregnancy and smoking are all factors that contribute to the development of GERD.
Q:Is it possible to prevent GERD?
A:Yes. The best and safest way to prevent GERD from occurring is to change the things that cause reflux.
Q:GERD is closely linked to which type of cancer?
A:GERD is closely linked to esophageal cancer.
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