Surgical Conditions - Gastro Oesophageal Reflux Disease (GORD)
The oesophagus carries food from the mouth to the stomach. The lower oesophageal sphincter is a ring of muscle at the bottom of the oesophagus that acts like a valve between the oesophagus and stomach.
Gastro Oesophageal reflux disease, or GORD, is a chronic disease that occurs when the lower oesophageal sphincter does not close properly and stomach contents leak back, or reflux, into the oesophagus.
When refluxed stomach acid touches the lining of the oesophagus, it causes a burning sensation in the chest or throat called heartburn. The fluid may even be tasted in the back of the mouth, and this is called acid indigestion. Occasional heartburn is common but does not necessarily mean one has GORD. Heartburn that occurs more than twice a week may be considered GORD, and it can eventually lead to more serious health problems.
Anyone, including infants, children, and pregnant women, can have GORD.
The main symptoms are persistent heartburn and acid regurgitation. Some people have GORD without heartburn. Instead, they experience pain in the chest, hoarseness in the morning, or trouble swallowing. You may feel like you have food stuck in your throat or like you are choking or your throat is tight. GORD can also cause a dry cough and bad breath.
The most frequent symptoms of GORD are so common that they may not be associated with a disease. Self-diagnosis can lead to mistreatment. Consultation with a physician is essential to proper diagnosis and treatment of GORD.
- A weak valve between Oesophagus and stomach
- Hiatal hernia- hiatal hernia occurs when the upper part of the stomach is above the diaphragm, the muscle wall that separates the stomach from the chest
- Alcohol use
Also, certain food and drinks are associated with reflux
- Medical history
- Response to Omeprazole
- A recent study demonstrated a potential role for a proton pump inhibitor, omeprazole, in the diagnosis of GORD.
- Barium swallow radiograph
- Uses x rays to diagnose abnormalities such as a reflux, hiatal hernia and severe inflammation of the oesophagus
- Life style modification
- Medications including antacids, Foaming agents, H2 receptor blockers, Proton Pump inhibitors
Surgery is an option when medicine and lifestyle changes do not work. Surgery may also be a reasonable alternative to a lifetime of drugs and discomfort.
Laparoscopic Nissen Fundoplication
This surgery is performed under general anaesthesia.
Click here to find out more about Nissen Fundoplication.