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Treatments for Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD)/Heartburn

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The treatment and management of GERD or heartburn involves lifestyle changes and medications. In more severe cases, surgery may be necessary.

The goals of treatment include:

  • Reducing the amount of acid produced in the stomach
  • Strengthening the sphincter muscle
  • Reducing the amount of food, liquid, and stomach acid that flows backward into the esophagus from the stomach

Treatment may involve the following:

Lifestyle changes
Medications
Surgery

References:

Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed/what.php . Updated April 29, 2013. Accessed April 30, 2013.

Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). Merck Manual for Health Care Professionals. Available at: http://www.merckmanuals.com/professional/gastrointestinal_disorders/esophageal_and_swallowing_disorders/gastroesophageal_reflux_disease_gerd.html . Updated May 2012. Accessed April 30, 2013.

Heartburn, gastroesophageal reflux (GER), and gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases website. Available at: http://digestive.niddk.nih.gov/ddiseases/pubs/gerd/ . Updated April 30, 2012. Accessed April 30, 2013.

Katz PO, Gerson LB, Vela MF. Guidelines for the diagnosis and management of gastroesophageal reflux disease. Am J Gastroenterol . 2013;108(3):302-328.

Understanding heartburn and reflux disease. American Gastroenterological Association website. Available at: http://www.gastro.org/patient-center/digestive-conditions/heartburn-gerd . Published April 25, 2010. Accessed April 30, 2010.



Last reviewed April 2013 by Daus Mahnke, MD; Brian Randall, MD

Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.

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