GERD is a common digestive disease that is accompanied by unpleasant symptoms for the patient and may cause serious complications in the long run. GERD is currently treated in Turkey.
It is a muscular tube connecting the pharynx to the stomach through which food passes from the mouth to reach the stomach.
Along its length, it contains muscles that push and facilitate the delivery of food and liquids to the stomach.
In its lower section there is a muscular sphincter that opens when food is present to allow it to pass through.
The sphincter closes after food has passed through to prevent food from going backwards from the stomach into the esophagus.
The esophagus also has an upper sphincter that opens when eating and remains closed in other cases.
What is gastroesophageal reflux disease?
So the main cause of GERD is a defect at the level of the lower esophageal sphincter.
Causes of gastroesophageal reflux
- Some foods that lower the pressure of the esophageal sphincter (chocolate and spicy foods)
- Some medications relax the lower esophageal sphincter (hypertensives, nitroglycerin)
- Reasons for raising intra-abdominal pressure (obesity or pregnant women and chronic constipation)
- Delayed emptying of stomach contents
- Hiatal hernia that leads to high pressure
gastroesophageal reflux disease symptoms
- Heartburn is the most common symptom of GERD (a painful burning sensation in the chest)
- Frequent regurgitation or acid returning to the mouth
- Difficulty swallowing
- chronic cough
- Throat and chest pain
- Inability to sleep
- smelly breath
- Constant crying in children and refusal to eat
Complications of gastroesophageal reflux disease
Esophageal reflux, if left untreated, can lead to potentially serious complications because the esophageal mucosa cannot tolerate acid, causing persistent esophageal epithelium irritation.
Here are some of the complications associated with gastroesophageal reflux disease:
Erosive esophagitisErosive inflammation occurs due to necrosis of the superficial layers of the esophageal mucosa with acidic gastric secretions.
Mary Barrett As a result of the continuous irritation of the esophageal mucosa with acid, the esophageal epithelium changes, whereby the columnar epithelium replaces the normal stratified squamous epithelium.
Barrett's esophagus is the most important and serious complication of GERD, as Barrett's esophagus increases the risk of developing GERD. esophageal cancer glandular;
oesophageal stenosis: Occurs as a result of continuous irritation of the oesophageal mucosa with acid. The mucosa is renewed repeatedly, and collagen is deposited during the renewal stage, which eventually leads to the addition of the esophageal cavity.
Methods of diagnosing GERD in Turkey
The patient’s clinical history and symptoms play the most important role in making the diagnosis, and a distinction must be made between normal acid reflux that occurs from time to time and gastroesophageal reflux disease, as the following methods help to approach and study the complications that occur:
response to antacids: The doctor prescribes antacid drugs to the patient and asks the patient to see the doctor after a period of time in case the patient suffers from GERD and his symptoms do not improve, that is, he does not respond to these medications.
upper gastrointestinal endoscopy An endoscope is inserted through the mouth, which is a flexible tube carrying a camera at the bottom. This method is used to exclude other causes or to detect possible complications of GERD, where the tissue of the esophagus and stomach is seen. A biopsy can be taken from the esophagus to study possible pathological changes.
upper gastrointestinal endoscopy
esophageal pH studyIn this method, sensors are placed in the esophagus to study the pH, where a tube is inserted through the nose or mouth and the sensors are placed in the esophagus and the patient returns home and after 24 hours, the pH of the esophagus is calculated through the existing sensors in the event that the pH is high. This indicates the presence of acid reflux esophageal
esophageal motility study: This technique enables us to study the function of the lower esophageal sphincter, where the pressure of the lower sphincter can be calculated. This technique is useful in order to verify the function of the esophageal muscles.
GERD treatment methods in Turkey
Diet therapy and lifestyle changes
- Weight loss (iffor obesity)
- Avoid foods that lower the pressure of the lower esophageal sphincter (chocolate and fat)
- Avoid eating before bed
- Avoid eating large amounts of food
- Avoid smoking and give up alcohol
In the event that the treatment does not work for the patient with lifestyle changes, the doctor prescribes medication to the patient to relieve the symptoms, which are:
Antacids: They are the basis of drug therapy, which are given after each meal and before bed.
The two most common types of drug options are: H2 receptor antagonists and proton pump inhibitors (PPIs).
Or if the patient does not want to take medicines for the rest of his life, he can resort to surgical work that treats the recurrence and improves the quality of life.
In fact, it has evolved throughout historysurgical techniques The laparoscopic procedure that is used to correct reflux, where the operation is currently being performed laparoscopically, which is characterized by a quick recovery and a low risk.
Transoral fundoplication (TIF)
One of the safe and effective ways to treat GERD. The operation does not include making any surgical incisions, but is entered through the mouth, where the lower esophageal sphincter is reconstructed by bending part of the stomach bottom using an advanced device
This procedure is characterized by being free of complications, without surgical incisions, and a short recovery time. The procedure takes about 50 minutes, and the patient can return to his normal life within several days.
TIF . technology
Laparoscopic Nissen operation
Using some instruments and under the direction of the endoscope, part of the upper stomach is bent around the lower esophageal sphincter, and then the incisions are closed.
Open Nissen operation
As for this procedure, it requires a longer recovery period and a longer hospital stay, and the risk and complications are higher than laparoscopic surgery.
linx machine mode
Surgery in Turkey
Turkey is distinguished by providing the latest specialized surgical centers equipped with the latest necessary technologies, a team of experienced doctors, and low treatment costs, which makes Turkey a leader in the field of medical tourism in the world.
Prevention of gastroesophageal reflux disease
- Maintain a good weight and avoid obesity
- Quit smoking and drinking alcohol
- Changing the angle of the bed when sleeping, i.e. raising the head at the front
- Avoid eating a lot before bed
- Avoid foods that lower esophageal sphincter pressure
- Do not lie down immediately after eating
Frequently asked questions about gastroesophageal reflux disease
How is GERD permanently treated?
Gastroesophageal reflux disease can be permanently treated with surgery to raise the pressure of the lower esophageal sphincter and avoid regurgitation of gastric acid.
What is the process that is done to treat GERD?
The operation that is done to treat GERD in most cases is the Nissen operation. The operation can be performed endoscopically, where the fundus of the stomach is folded around the esophagus, which leads to an increase in the pressure of the lower esophageal sphincter.
Does GERD cause serious complications?
In most cases, GERD can be controlled with some medications, but GERD may cause serious long-term complications if left untreated, Barrett's reflux, which poses a potential threat to esophageal cancer.