GERD Treatment in Knoxville, TN

Gastroesophageal reflux disease (often known as GERD) is a common gastrointestinal condition. It has an increasing prevalence in the United States, affecting about 18.1% to 27.8% of the adult population.

Who is at risk?
A person can develop GERD even if he/she doesn’t have any of the following listed below. However, your risk of GERD can increase if you are/have:

• Overweight
The excess weight can put pressure on the stomach.

• Pregnant
Like being overweight, being pregnant can also increase your risk. The growing baby can put pressure on the stomach.

• Use alcohol excessively
Excessive alcohol use can damage the lining of the esophagus.

• Smoker
Smoking weakens the lower esophageal sphincter. It’s the muscular ring between the esophagus and the stomach.

• Have health issues that cause weakening of the esophageal muscles
An example of this is an autoimmune condition called scleroderma. This involves hardening and tightening of the skin, a buildup of scar tissue, and damage on the internal organs.

How would you know if you have GERD?
GERD signs and symptoms usually include:

Heartburn which usually occurs after eating and tend to get worse at night
• Chest pain
• Difficulty in swallowing
• Sensation of having a lump in the throat
• Regurgitation of food
• Vomiting
• Sore throat and hoarseness of voice

To confirm that you have GERD, your doctor would have to perform some tests. One of which is the upper GI endoscopy.

In this procedure, the doctor will insert a thin, flexible tube. This tube comes with a light and a camera. It is inserted down through your throat to see the inside of your esophagus and stomach. Through this, the doctor can see any inflammation in the areas.

The other tests your doctor may recommend may include:

Ambulatory acid probe test – this helps determine when and for how long the stomach acid regurgitates. This test uses a special monitor (often a thin, flexible tube) placed in your esophagus. The monitor is connected to a computer.

Esophageal manometry – this test measures how well your esophagus works. It measures the contractions in your esophagus.

X-ray of your upper digestive system – this involves taking of a chalky substance and having X-rays taken. This helps the doctor find the cause of your symptoms.

How is GERD treated?
Initially, your doctor may recommend lifestyle changes and taking medications. If there’s no long term improvement through these measures, surgery may be recommended.

At Premier Surgical Associates, we have expert surgeons, Dr. David Harrel, Dr. Michael Antiporda, Dr. David Schutter, and Dr. Michael Kelly, who specialize in the surgical treatment of gastrointestinal conditions. They can evaluate your symptoms, identify their underlying cause, and recommend the most appropriate long term treatment.

For more info about Premier Surgical Acid Reflux Surgery, visit today!