• GERD
  • Causes
  • Symptoms
  • Diagnosis
  • Treatment

Do you ever feel likeyou have food stuck in your throat? Do you experience burning in your chest? Does your stomach feel uncomfortable if you lie down after eating? Have you tried everything to relieve your problem but have not had much relief? Osteopathic Manipulative Treatment (OMT), the all-natural alternative, may be the answer for you.

Studies have shown:

  • OMT applied to the diaphragm and esophagus may improve symptoms of GERD.

Gastro-esophageal reflux disease (GERD) is a condition where the stomach contents (food or liquid) rise up from the stomach into the esophagus, a tube that carries food from the mouth to the stomach. Normally the stomach contents do not enter the esophagus. But in patients with GERD, stomach content travels back into the esophagus because of a weak or relaxed lower esophageal sphincter (LES). The LES acts like a valve between the esophagus and stomach preventing food from moving backward into the esophagus.

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The exact cause of what weakens or relaxes the LES in GERD is not known, however certain factors including obesity, smoking, pregnancy, and possibly alcohol may contribute to GERD. Common foods that can worsen reflux symptoms include spicy foods, onions, chocolates, caffeine-containing drinks, mint flavorings, tomato-based foods and citrus fruits. Certain medications can also worsen the reflux.

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Heartburn is usually the main symptom; a burning-type pain in the lower part of the mid-chest, behind the breast bone. Other symptoms such as a bitter or sour taste in the mouth, trouble in swallowing, nausea, dry cough or wheezing, regurgitation of food (bringing food back up into the mouth), hoarseness or change in voice, and chest pain may be experienced.

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GERD is usually diagnosed based on a thorough medical history and physical exam. In most cases, a trial of writing a food diary, lifestyle modifications, and perhaps short-term medications will be done to see if symptoms improve before recommending further testing.

If needed, there are several tests that can be performed, and they include:

  • Endoscopy: This test allows the doctor to examine the inside of the patient’s esophagus, stomach, and portions of the intestine, with an instrument called an endoscope, a thin flexible lighted tube.
  • Barium X-rays: These are diagnostic x-rays in which barium is used to diagnose abnormalities of the digestive tract.
  • pH monitoring: In this procedure, a tube will be inserted through the nose into the esophagus and positioned above the LES to record the pH of the acid content. Another option that may be used is a capsule that measures pH.
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General measures the patient can take to reduce reflux are:

  • Antacids or over-the-counter medicines that provide temporarily relief to heartburn or indigestion. Other medications such as proton pump inhibitors and H2 antagonists may be prescribed to reduce the production of acid in the stomach.
  • Avoid eating 2-3 hours before going to bed
  • Eat smaller and more frequent meals
  • Lose weight if you are over weight
  • Write a food diary to help eliminate the foods that increase the reflux
  • Avoid smoking and use of alcohol

Osteopathic manipulative treatment (OMT) is a natural treatment modality that can be included in the management plan for improving symptoms of GERD.

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Osteopath treatment for GERD

Here are 3 reasons to speak to us

  • You thought it would go away on it’s own – but it didn’t
  • You are looking for credible healthcare alternatives – but just don’t know what is out there
  • You tried other Healthcare Professionals in the past, but nothing they said or did seemed to help

Click the link below to book a call with us if you would like to get some solid advice. Our goal is to help you make the right decision about what to do next.

Frequently asked questions

  • New patients

What should I wear to my appointments?

Loose-fitting clothing or gym clothes

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  • New patients

How many visits will I need?

This is variable depending upon what is being treated and how extensive your treatment needs to be.  Our goal is to bring you to optimal health so that you won’t need to continually return.

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What is the difference between licensing and board certification for a physician, and do you have any of these?

Physicians are required to be licensed to practice medicine in the U.S. by the licensing board in each state they wish to practice.

A board certified physician has completed an additional training program in a specialty and has passed a rigorous exam to assess his or her knowledge, skills and experience to provide quality patient care in that specialty.

In my case, I am licensed to practice medicine in Texas, and I have two board certifications. The first one is Family Medicine and the second one is Neuromusculoskeletal Medicine/Osteopathic Manipulative Medicine.

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