Signs and Symptoms of GERD
Everyone has likely experienced common symptoms such as acid reflux, pains in the chest, a cough or a sore throat, however, if any of these issues become chronic, they could be symptoms of GERD. If you start to experience have excessive or daily acid reflux, especially coupled with a sore throat and a cough that lingers, you should ask your doctor about GERD (gastroesophageal reflux disease).
Though GERD symptoms can be uncomfortable, alarm symptoms are not typical of GERD and can signal additional, more severe health concerns. Consult a health care professional if you notice a change in your current symptoms or experience any of the following:
• Sudden weight loss
• Frequent heartburn
• Difficulty swallowing or a feeling of trapped food in the chest
• Bloody stools (tarry black or red)
Click here to download a GERD symptoms tracker document that you can use to track your reflux symptoms.
Risks Associated GERD
GERD is a chronic disease, and so treatment usually needs to be maintained on a long-term basis, even after symptoms are under control.
Untreated GERD can sometimes result in severe damage to the esophagus. A narrowing (stricture) of the throat may occur from chronic scarring, and an esophageal ulcer and bleeding may develop from repeated exposure to stomach acid.
Some patients with prolonged, uncontrolled GERD may develop Barrett’s esophagus, a condition that results in changes to the esophageal lining which increase the risk of developing esophageal cancer.
These resources were made possible through a partnership between Medtronic and CDHF