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Reflux testing and treatment
If you’ve been diagnosed with GERD, there are several approaches available to help manage your symptoms.
If you have been diagnosed with gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) based on your symptoms or through objective reflux testing, there are several approaches available to help manage your symptoms. Many people can manage their GERD symptoms by making lifestyle changes or with over-the-counter medications. In some cases, some people may require stronger medications or surgery to relieve their symptoms.
Often, physicians suggest lifestyle changes to relieve GERD symptoms.1
Recommended lifestyle changes may include:
If you don’t experience relief within a few weeks of making the recommended lifestyle changes, your doctor might recommend over-the-counter or prescription medications for GERD.
Proton-pump inhibitors (PPIs) are medications that reduce the production of acid in your stomach. However, PPIs are not always effective — approximately 30% of people with GERD do not respond to PPIs and continue to experience symptoms.2 For those people, the medication isn’t treating the real problem.
If you have been taking over the counter medications and continue to have symptoms, consult a gastroenterologist (GI).
Other medications that may help with management of GERD symptoms include:
If you were diagnosed with GERD based on symptoms, take PPIs regularly, and still have reflux symptoms, speak to a gastroenterologist (GI) about a reflux test.
GERD can often be controlled by lifestyle changes and medication. Your GI may recommend further interventional steps for patients whose symptoms are not relieved by medication or lifestyle changes.
Surgery may be recommended for some patients with GERD. There are different types of surgery available for patients and these can be discussed with your physician.4 One surgical procedure used to treat GERD is called laparoscopic fundoplication.
Information and resources on this site should not be used as a substitute for medical advice from your doctor. Always discuss diagnosis and treatment information including risks with your doctor. Keep in mind that all treatment and outcome results are specific to the individual patient. Results may vary.
Durko L, Malecka-Panas E. Lifestyle Modifications and Colorectal Cancer. Curr Colorectal Cancer Rep. 2014; 10(1):45–54.
Diseases and Conditions: GERD. Mayo Clinic. Retrieved from http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/gerd/basics/lifestyle-home-remedies/con-20025201. Accessed on December 15, 2016.
Vaezi M, Zehrai A, Yuksel E. Testing for refractory gastroesophageal reflux disease. ASGE Leading Edge. 2012;2(2):1-13. American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy.
Heartburn/GERD Health Center. WebMD. Retrieved from: http://www.webmd.com/heartburn-gerd/guide/treating-with-surgery. Accessed on December 15, 2016.