As many as 1 in 5 Americans suffer from chronic acid reflux. At Brighton Beach Medical Group in Brighton Beach, Brooklyn, experienced gastroenterologist Steven Tawil, MD, offers testing for and treatment of acid reflux and GERD to prevent permanent damage to your digestive tract. Dr. Tawil provides on-site upper endoscopies to accurately diagnose your symptoms, and he creates a custom treatment plan to ease acid-related pain and improve your overall quality of life. Schedule a consultation today by calling the New York City office to learn more about available solutions for acid reflux and GERD.
Acid reflux is a condition that causes acids from your stomach to flow backward into your esophagus. This occurs due to weakness in the esophageal sphincter, which can’t tighten enough to prevent the backflow of acids.
Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) is a chronic form of acid reflux that occurs two or more times a week and leads to inflammation and irritation in your esophagus. Without treatment, long-term GERD can increase your risk for esophageal cancer.
Both conditions can be the result of a hiatal hernia, a condition where the upper part of your stomach pushes through a weak spot in your diaphragm, the muscle that separates your chest from your abdomen.
You could also develop reflux or GERD because of:
Use of some medications like antihistamines and pain relievers can increase your risk of acid reflux and GERD.
Occasional and chronic acid reflux can cause heartburn, a condition that causes mild to severe pain you feel in your chest due to irritation of the delicate lining of your esophagus. Other common symptoms of both acid reflux and GERD include:
You could also experience increased tooth damage or loss when acid begins to breakdown the enamel. If you have asthma, episodes of acid reflux can trigger breathing problems.
In many cases, Dr. Tawil can determine if your symptoms relate to acid reflux or GERD after a review of your medical history and symptoms, as well as a physical exam.
He could also order an upper endoscopy, a diagnostic test that involves the insertion of a special tube with an attached camera into your esophagus and stomach.
The camera sends back real-time images to an external monitor, allowing Dr. Tawil an up-close look at any damage the backflow of acid is causing.
To reduce the backflow of acid, Dr. Tawil initially recommends over-the-counter or prescription medications to either slow down the production of acid or to neutralize existing acid in the stomach.
Dr. Tawil also works with you on lifestyle changes to help you maintain a healthy weight and quit smoking. He can also provide dietary guidance to make it easier for you to avoid foods that increase your chance of suffering acid reflux, such as spicy foods, tomatoes, coffee, and alcohol.
Lessen your risk of esophageal damage by scheduling a diagnostic appointment for acid reflux or GERD. Call the Brighton Beach Medical Group office today.