Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) is a chronic digestive disease. GERD occurs when stomach acid or, occasionally, stomach content, flows back into your food pipe (esophagus). The backwash (reflux) irritates the lining of your esophagus and causes GERD.
Both acid reflux and heartburn are common digestive conditions that many people experience from time to time. When these signs and symptoms occur at least twice each week or interfere with your daily life, or when your doctor can see damage to your esophagus, you may be diagnosed with GERD.
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 even surgery, to reduce symptoms.
July 31, 2014
- Ferri FF. Ferri's Clinical Advisor 2014: 5 Books in 1. Philadelphia, Pa.: Mosby Elsevier; 2014. https://www.clinicalkey.com. Accessed Jan. 2, 2014.
- Kahrilas PJ. Clinical manifestations and diagnosis of gastroesophageal reflux in adults. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed Jan. 1, 2014.
- Kahrilas PJ. Medical management of gastroesophageal reflux disease in adults. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed Jan. 1, 2014.
- Schwaitzberg SD. Surgical management of gastroesophageal reflux in adults. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Jan. 5, 2014.
- Rakel D. Integrative Medicine. 3rd ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Saunders Elsevier; 2012. http://www.clinicalkey.com. Accessed Jan. 2, 2014.
- Bope ET, et al. Conn's Current Therapy. Philadelphia, Pa.: Saunders Elsevier; 2013. http://www.clinicalkey.com. Accessed Jan. 2, 2014.
- Kahrilas PJ. Complications of gastroesophageal reflux in adults. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed Jan. 5, 2014.
- Katz PO, et al. Guidelines for the diagnosis and management of gastroesophageal reflux disease. American Journal of Gastroenterology. 2013;108:308.
- AskMayoExpert. Gastroesophageal reflux disease. Rochester, Minn.: Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research; 2013.
- Weight management. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/public/heart/obesity/lose_wt/recommen.htm. Accessed Jan. 2, 2014.
- Picco MF (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Jacksonville, Fla. April 24, 2011.
- Golden AK. Decision Support System. Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. Dec. 23, 2013.
- Fass R. Alternative therapeutic approaches to chronic proton pump inhibitor. Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology. 2012;10:338.
- Patrick L. Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD): A review of conventional and alternative treatments. Alternative Medicine Review. 2011;16:116.
- Safe use of complementary health products and practices. National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine. http://nccam.nih.gov/health/safety. Accessed Jan. 5, 2014.
- Lipham JC, et al. The LINX® reflux management system: Confirmed safety and efficacy now at 4 years. Surgical Endoscopy. 2012;26:2944.
- U.S. News best hospitals 2013-2014. U.S. News & World Report. http://health.usnews.com/best-hospitals/rankings/gastroenterology-and-gi-surgery. Accessed Jan. 2, 2014.
- Alexander JA (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. Jan. 12, 2014.
You Are ... The Campaign for Mayo Clinic
Mayo Clinic is a not-for-profit organization. Make a difference today.