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What is Heartburn?
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Main > Specialty Areas > Gastroenterology >
Heartburn and Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease

Treatment of Heartburn

Taking antacids and acid blockers can be effective in treating mild heartburn or alleviating severe symptoms of the Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD). But heartburn usually requires a more aggressive approach when Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD) is found. Some effective treatments are:

Acid-blocking Medications

Daily treatment with acid-blocking medications could be effective to 25%-30% of people with Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD). This method is most effective for those with milder forms of the condition. You shouldn’t use a higher dose than stated on the nonprescription product packaging without consulting your doctor.

Proton-pump Inhibitors

Proton-pump inhibitor is a class of medications which can be effective for people who do not respond to antacid or acid blockers. Proton-pump inhibitors directly block acid production in the stomach cells and provide more effective relief than less powerful medications. Medications that are currently available in this class, by prescription only:

  • Lansoprazole (Prevacid)
  • Metoclopramide (Reglan)
  • Omeprazole (Prilosec)
  • Pantoprazole (Protonix)
  • Rabeprazole (AcipHex)
  • These are the most potent heartburn and Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD) medications on the market at this time, although other new drugs in this same class are undergoing study and testing.

    Surgery

    People having heartburn other Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD) who do not respond to any medication may need to go through Endoscopic surgery – various surgical intervention procedures are available that address causes of heartburn – thoroughly discuss your options with your gastroenterologist.

    Procedure Info:
    Endoscopic surgery, or endoscopy is a minimally invasive surgical procedure that uses a small cut, or sometimes even one of the body’s natural orifices to insert a thin tube (or two) with a camera and/or a surgical instrument on its end. The procedure is designed to explore and operate with minimal discomfort for the patient. Patients who undergo endoscopies generally exhibit fewer post-operative complications and undergo faster recoveries.

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