Let us Learn about Health and Healthcare

Understanding Heartburn: Day 5

In Health, Healthcare, Medicine on September 3, 2012 at 8:00 am

What are the long-term complications of GERD?
Chronic GERD that is untreated can cause serious complications. Inflammation of the esophagus from refluxed stomach acid can damage the lining and cause bleeding or ulcers—also called esophagitis. Scars from tissue damage can lead to strictures— narrowing of the esophagus—that make swallowing difficult. Some people develop Barrett’s esophagus, in which cells in the esophageal lining take on an abnormal shape and color. Over time, the cells can lead to esophageal cancer, which is often fatal. Persons with GERD and its compli­cations should be monitored closely by a physician.
Studies have shown that GERD may worsen or contribute to asthma, chronic cough, and pulmonary fibrosis.

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