Houston, we have a heartburn problem

Houston, we have a heartburn problem

You have just finished a wonderful Italian dinner accompanied by nice red wine and followed by a delicious dessert – and now here you are sensing that all is not quite well. You feel a burning pain in your stomach that is moving up your chest. You know it is going to be a long night.

We all know the story all too well. In fact, thousands of Houstonians suffer from heartburn several times a week. Most of us think that heartburn is just the result of what we eat and antacid pills cure the problem – right? WRONG!!!s

Those recurring heartburn pains are a signal from your body that something is wrong – very wrong! Acid in the stomach is very normal. Every time you eat, millions of tiny cells in the stomach secrete acid to help digest food. Acid belongs in the stomach. A competent lower esophageal sphincter relaxes after each swallow allowing food to get in the stomach. The sphincter then closes to prevent acid from backing up into the esophagus.

Unfortunately, for some, the lower esophageal sphincter does not function properly. The sphincter is damaged and acid escapes the stomach into the esophagus causing pain. When in pain, most Houstonians do what most people always do… pop a pill. The drug industry sells over $ 14 billion in medications to “cure” heartburn. Everyone that watches television has seen Larry the Cable guy promoting the “purple pill”. But do antacid pills, like the purple pill cure Gastro-esophageal reflux disease?

The answer is NO. Antacid pills relieve symptoms by neutralizing stomach acid. They are useful for the occasional heartburn but not chronic heartburn. In chronic heartburn, the lower esophageal sphincter is damaged. Pills don’t repair the weakened lower esophageal sphincter. As a result, stomach content continues to reflux into the esophagus causing more damage as years pass by. If you suffer from heartburn and reflux on a weekly basis get help from a reflux specialist.

At Houston Heartburn and Reflux Center, proper diagnosis and effective treatment is our priority. First, we offer you a comprehensive workup to confirm the diagnosis of acid reflux. If you don’t have acid reflux you don’t need to take all these anti-reflux medications. Second, if you have acid reflux, we stage your disease. Accordingly, we tailor a treatment plan that eliminates your symptoms, cure your acid reflux, and prevent future complications with the least side effects possible.