What Can a Gastroenterologist Do To Help With My Heartburn?

What Can a Gastroenterologist Do To Help With My Heartburn?

Heartburn refers to a mild burning sensation in the chest or throat that can occur after eating or when lying down. Many people experience heartburn once in a while, but those who deal with it regularly should see a gastroenterologist for help. Dr. Sushil Rattan and Dr. Radman Mostaghim, the board-certified gastroenterologists at GI Med Health in Greenbelt, MD, treat persistent heartburn and can develop a treatment plan to help you experience relief.

Heartburn Symptoms

Heartburn is often a symptom of a condition known as acid reflux, a condition in which stomach fluids travel back up the esophagus. There is a valve between the stomach and esophagus that normally closes once food passes through into the stomach. If the valve does not close all the way, stomach fluids can travel back up into the esophagus. When these fluids travel upward, they often cause an uncomfortable burning sensation in the mid-chest or throat which is known as heartburn.

In addition to acid reflux, heartburn can occur as a result of eating spicy, greasy, or fried foods, as well as drinking coffee or alcohol. Other symptoms that sometimes develop in conjunction with heartburn include:

  • A dry cough
  • Swallowing is difficult or painful
  • The feeling of something being stuck in the throat
  • Burning that worsens when lying down
  • A persistent sore throat
  • Hoarseness

Treatments For Heartburn

Several effective over-the-counter options are available for treating occasional heartburn. However, individuals with persistent heartburn who experience it at least twice a week should seek professional treatment. Left untreated, chronic heartburn related to acid reflux could eventually result in damage to the lining of the esophagus.

The experienced gastroenterologists at our office in Greenbelt, MD, treat persistent heartburn and will develop a custom treatment plan tailored to your specific needs. Treatment options could include antacid medications, lifestyle modifications, or surgery in severe cases. Antacids help neutralize stomach acids and reduce or block acid production. Recommendations for lifestyle changes might include dietary modifications, eating smaller portions, avoiding certain foods and drinks, or weight loss.

If you struggle with persistent heartburn, a gastroenterologist can help. Schedule an appointment with Dr. Rattan or Dr. Mostaghim to discuss your options for treating chronic heartburn by calling GI Med Health in Greenbelt, MD, at (301) 982-7900.

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