The liquid from the stomach that refluxes into the esophagus damages the cells lining the esophagus. The body responds in the way that it usually responds to damage, which is with inflammation (esophagitis).

As previously mentioned, the exact link between the two conditions is uncertain. However, there are a few possibilities as to why GERD and asthma may coincide. One possibility is that the acid flow causes injury to the lining of the throat, airways and lungs, making inhalation difficult and often causing a persistent cough. Not everyone with GERD has heartburn, but the primary symptoms of GERD are heartburn, regurgitation, and an acid taste in the mouth.

Treatment today is not much different, and involves elevating the head of your bed, weight loss, and a diet that eliminates alcohol, caffeine, smoking, and carbonated beverages. It is also recommended to eat small meals, and to eat 2-3 hours before lying down to sleep.

Although no lung biopsies were performed, these patients are similar to others with BOOP in association with GERD, as they had clinical and laboratory findings of inflammation and chest radiography showing small and multifocal airspace infiltrates without regional preference. The recognition of GERD as a possible aetiological factor in BOOP has important implications, as the usual therapy, corticosteroids, may increase reflux [59].

Therefore, it is believed that the primary effect of metoclopramide may be to speed up emptying of the stomach, which also would be expected to reduce reflux. Esophageal acid testing is considered a “gold standard” for diagnosing GERD. As discussed previously, the reflux of acid is common in the general population. However, patients with the symptoms or complications of GERD have reflux of more acid than individuals without the symptoms or complications of GERD.

This description comes from a published review of the condition referred to as the Montreal definition of GERD. Symptoms of GERD include heart burn (a retrosternal burning sensation) and regurgitation (a perception of the movement of gastric content into the hypopharynx or mouth). The Montreal definition considers the diagnosis of GERD to be present when symptoms are troublesome to the patient and when mild symptoms occur two or more days a week, or moderate to severe symptoms occur more than once a week.

These techniques are attractive because they do not require surgery; however, there are associated with complications, and the long-term effectiveness of the treatments has not yet been determined. Surgical removal of the esophagus is always an option. Ulcers of the esophagus heal with the formation of scars (fibrosis).

Be sure to keep your doctor informed of how you’re feeling — better or worse. However, if treatment does not improve your asthma symptoms, you and your doctor should consider other causes. Do you have frequent heartburn or pyrosis?

GERD and Asthma Management

However, they now do so at different locations. Consequently, the pressures are no longer additive. Instead, a single, high-pressure barrier to reflux is replaced by two barriers of lower pressure, and reflux thus occurs more easily. So, decreasing the pressure barrier is one way that a hiatal hernia can contribute to reflux. Whether GERD caused your asthma or vice versa, treatment for GERD just might help you breathe easier.

Do you have symptoms of regurgitation? Many patients will describe the sensation of acid and food backing up into the esophagus as a “wet burp.” Some people also have a sensation that their food is always coming back up with a sense of nausea.

Further GER diagnostic evaluation should be considered if symptoms worsen. Over time, some patients are able to taper off PPI therapy, although this is rare in our personal clinical experience.

et al. [26] also showed that oesophageal acid increases minute ventilation, suggesting another mechanism for respiratory symptoms in GERD patients. Notwithstanding these functional changes, without aspiration parenchymal pathology does not occur. et al. [18] studied 147 obese patients undergoing weight reduction surgery, identifying a reduced diffusion capacity of the lung for carbon monoxide (D L,CO ) in those with severe GERD compared to those without GERD. However, the GERD patients were sleepier and older, suggesting that pulmonary vascular disease due to sleep apnoea could have accounted for the difference in D L,CO . Gastro-oesophageal reflux disease (GERD) is a common disorder in Western countries, and its relationship to airways disorders (e.g. asthma) has been well established.

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