GERD – The Disease, the Doctor, and the Little-Known Discovery
Will you or someone you love be one of the 250,000 Americans diagnosed with GERD this year?
A survey on hospital patients revealed that digestive disorders such as GERD, Acid Reflux, and Heartburn are the #1 reason people visit their doctors today. Not just in America, but worldwide.
If you are like me, you know the feeling. Do you remember what it felt like the first time you were rushed to the emergency room, believing you had a heart attack, surrounded by emergency nurses, and having no idea what will happen next?
I’m sure you felt relieved when you found out it was “just reflux”. Sooner or later of course, you found out that dealing with this condition is a lot tougher than you thought.
The Disease – Acid Reflux or GERD (Gastro Esophageal Reflux Disease) occurs when stomach acid backs up into the lower esophagus up to your throat and causes irritation. Oftentimes, it is the result of a weak sphincter muscle that’s supposed to keep the acid at bay in your stomach.
If you’ve been in and out of the doctor’s office for quite a long time already, it’s obvious that they gave you a list of foods and drinks to avoid (e.g. fats, chocolate, tomato products, citrus juices and products, spicy foods, menthol candy, alcohol, soft drinks and caffeine) because it can cause Heartburn, a condition that is similar to heart attack but in reality is caused by your reflux.
The Doctor – It is likely that the one handling your case is a digestive specialist known as a Gastro-Enterologist. GERD is often diagnosed after a series of tests (e.g. ECG, ultrasound, endoscopy) that rule out other possible diseases. Medical therapy usually follows which often includes one or a combination of the following medications:
1. Medicines to improve stomach muscle action (e.g. Plasil, Motilium)
2. Medicines to reduce stomach muscle action (e.g. Prevacid, Losec, Nexium, Zantac)
3. Liquid or regular antacids to relieve stomach acidity (e.g. Maalox, Tums, Kremil S)
These are usually taken within a period of 1-2 weeks, and patients are requested to report back to their doctor if they experience any complications or if they have any trouble swallowing, have repeated vomiting, experience shortness of breath, fever, sweat, or pain that radiates into the arm or neck.
The Discovery – It’s a little-known truth backed up by nutritionists and natural medicinal experts claiming that GERD is not really a disease, but a condition that can be treated and cured without the use of drugs or any kind of prescriptive medication.
And for good reason. Drugs according to them, do nothing but manage the symptoms and rarely focus on the root cause. It can be accepted as a form of emergency treatment but in the long run, it serves more as a “band-aid” approach, with the high risk of causing side effects or creating other diseases in the long run.