Along with dietary and other lifestyle changes, doctors at NYU Langone may recommend an over-the-counter or prescription medication to treat gastroesophageal reflux disease, or GERD. These medications may reduce the amount of acid produced by the stomach during digestion, which in turn reduces the amount of acid pushed back into the esophagus, the tube that carries food from your mouth to your stomach.
There may be an increased risk of bone fractures associated with long-term use of PPIs. If lifestyle measures aren’t enough to control your reflux symptoms and you do need medication, the good news is that many people with gastro-oesophageal reflux get symptom relief from simple over-the-counter antacids. If you experience these symptoms of GERD, please consult your physician, because the treatment for this disease is more complex than the treatment for occasional heartburn and will likely involve prescription medicines. If you only experience heartburn infrequently, usually after specific triggers, and you donâ€™t experience the other symptoms of GERD, it is likely that you are just experiencing bouts of heartburn.
Lose weight. When excess abdominal weight presses on the stomach, it can cause acid to rise up into the esophagus. There are several steps you can take to reduce or eliminate GERD symptoms without taking medication or undergoing surgery. Talk to your doctor before taking antacids if you have kidney disease.
If you take Plavix, talk to your doctor about whether you should take a PPI. More than half of the people who take PPIs probably do not need them. Simple heartburn can be treated with antacids or other drugs, plus diet and lifestyle changes. Stomach acid also stimulates coughing, which helps clear the lungs. Some experts think this is why some patients, especially those who are frail and elderly, face an increased risk of pneumonia if they take P.P.I.â€™s.
If you do feel the burn, these 8 home remedies can ease your heartburn symptoms. For some people, surgery to strengthen the barrier between the stomach and esophagus may be a treatment option for acid reflux. This surgery to treat GERD is called a â€œfundoplicationâ€ (pronounced fun-doe-ply-KAY-shun). Your doctor can tell you if surgery might help you. If your heartburn is not relieved with OTC antacids or acid blockers, talk to your doctor.
PPIs work by reducing the amount of acid produced in the stomach. For people with gastric ulcers or gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), PPIsâ€™ acid-blocking abilities help ulcers to heal or prevent damage to the esophagus. They do the job (1), which is why theyâ€™ve increasingly been prescribed for more common gastrointestinal issues like heartburn. PPIs – for example, esomprazole (Nexium), omeprazole (Prilosec) and lansoprazole (Prevacid) – are one of the most commonly prescribed types of medication worldwide (2).
For people with mild-to-moderate disease, home care and H2-blockers are generally effective. Let your doctor what you are doing about your reflux disease and how well it is working. Health-care professionals often are reluctant to prescribe these medications because they have fairly significant side effects.
These medications are generally well-tolerated but long-term use may be associated with a slight increase in risk of vitamin B-12 deficiency and bone fractures. The LINX device is an expandable ring of metal beads that keeps stomach acid from refluxing into the esophagus, but allows food to pass into the stomach. Surgery for GERD may involve a procedure to reinforce the lower esophageal sphincter called Nissen fundoplication.
Promotility agents work by stimulating the muscles of the gastrointestinal tract, which may help prevent acids from staying in the stomach too long, and strengthening the lower esophageal sphincter, reducing reflux into the esophagus. Metoclopramide (Reglan) is a promotility agent occasionally used to treat heartburn associated with GERD.
When all is well, thereâ€™s only one way the food and stomach acids can go, and thatâ€™s down. But when you have acid reflux, that acid reverses direction. Sometimes youâ€™ll taste sourness, and maybe even a bit of the food you just ate, in the back of your mouth.