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The Esophagus and pH Testing

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What Should I Do During the Esophageal pH Test?

Throughout the monitoring period of the esophageal pH test, there are several things you need to be aware of to assure accurate results:

  • Activity: Try to follow your usual routine during the monitoring period. Many people tend to reduce or change their activities during the testing period; however, such changes can affect reflux occurrence and make the results of the monitoring period less useful. Do not take a bath or shower during the monitoring period, as the equipment should not get wet.
  • Eating: Eat your regular meals at the usual times and eat the way you normally do. If you do not eat during the monitoring period, your stomach will not produce acid as usual and the test results will not be accurate. You need to eat at least two meals a day. Eat foods that tend to increase your symptoms (without making yourself miserable!). You may drink as much plain water as you want.
  • Lying down: Remain upright throughout the day. Do not lie down until you go to bed, unless napping or lying down during the day is part of your normal daily routine.
  • Medications: Continue following your doctor's recommendations regarding which medications to avoid during the monitoring period.

What Information Should I Record During the pH Test?

During the monitoring period of the pH test, make sure you keep accurate records:

  • Record your primary symptoms, as discussed with your doctor, by pressing the appropriate buttons on the monitor when the symptoms occur.
  • Record the times when you are eating, drinking anything except water, or lying down (you do not have to be sleeping or intending to sleep when lying down). Record the following:

     

    • The time when you start eating
    • The time when you finish eating
    • The time when you start lying down
    • The time when you finish lying down

     

What Happens After the Esophageal pH Test?

You may resume your normal diet and activities after the esophageal pH test. If your throat feels sore following the test, suck on lozenges.

At your next appointment, your doctor will discuss your test results.

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