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Heartburn, death. Acid reflux causes many deaths each year. Heartburn (acid refluxate) causes histologic damage to the epithelium of the esophagus. This promotes the development of reflux-induced adenocarcinoma of the esophagus.
Info: Esophageal cancer, caused by acid refluxate, is increasing in incidence at an exponential rate.
And: This is a major health problem. It is likely to become worse over time. Prevention is key.
Intro. This article is based on information in a respected text on GERD. The book is called GERD: Reflux to Esophageal Adenocarcinoma. It was written by two medical doctors at the University of Southern California, Chandrasoma and DeMeester.
Note: The text represents the medical knowledge surrounding heartburn and GERD, and studies all the available research in depth.
The first chapter of the book cites the results of an American Gastroenterology Workshop. The experts in this workshop express "great futility" in agreeing on diagnoses of GERD. They felt that screening for the disease is "worthless."
All of today's available treatment methods (acid suppression, anti-reflux surgery, and ablation) are considered ineffective in preventing adenocarcinoma. GERD: Reflux to Esophageal Adenocarcinoma
In other words, the direct treatments for heartburn (such as drugs and surgery) are not preventing cancer. And cancer of this type is increasing exponentially, faster than any other type of cancer.
Death. The authors describe an "epidemic of reflux-induced cancer." Physicians are not doing anything to stop this. Treatment with all medications, such as antacids, H2 blockers, and proton pump inhibitors, prevent the daily pain of heartburn.
However: Prilosec does not prevent the tragic deaths from the condition. It does not prevent histologic damage.Prilosec and Tums
Patients often choose to isolate themselves from medical knowledge. But in some ways this can be hazardous. The authors describe most expert gastroenterologists as "profoundly ignorant" of the histologic changes underlying heartburn.
So: The book GERD: Reflux to Esophageal Adenocarcinoma provides an appropriate dedication.
To all those patients with gastoesophageal reflux disease who paid the ultimate price for our lack of understanding. GERD: Reflux to Esophageal Adenocarcinoma
Lifestyles. Treatments for GERD are not the same thing as lifestyle changes. Eating less harmful food and drinking milder beverages, losing weight, sleeping on an incline, and exercising in some capacity are not medical treatments.
But: They improve medical outcomes. This is independent of medical treatments such as medications.
Tip: If you suffer from GERD or heartburn, lifestyle changes are something that you can implement without great risk.GERD
Summary. We cited a top medical textbook. We verified and gained insight into how GERD can cause death. GERD causes cellular changes that promote the development of esophageal cancer. This form of cancer is increasing faster than any other.
And: Acid suppression drugs and reflux surgeries are ineffective at stopping this.