Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD) - What Happens
Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) may cause
inflammation in the esophagus. This condition is
called esophagitis. GERD without esophagitis is sometimes called nonerosive
If you have mild GERD symptoms-an uncomfortable
feeling of burning, warmth, heat, or pain just behind the breastbone-you may be able to treat
yourself with nonprescription medicines that reduce or block acid. For more information, see Medications.
Barrett's esophagus, in which the cells that line the
inside of the esophagus are replaced by cells similar to those that line the
inside of the stomach and intestine. Barrett's esophagus is not common, but it can
lead to cancer of the esophagus.
Respiratory problems, such as a
asthma, pneumonia, and laryngitis.
speeding up of
tooth decay, because stomach acid gets into the mouth
and wears away tooth enamel.
Some people who have GERD may be at increased risk for
cancer of the esophagus.