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Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Gastroesophageal Reflux

Heartburn or burning pain in the gut is a common symptom of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). But some other conditions also can cause a burning sensation in the chest or solar plexus which proved upon inspection is a serious disease.

It takes a lot to doctors identify whether the symptoms of burning sensation in the chest or heartburn is a symptom of GERD. Here are nine other conditions that can cause a burning sensation in the chest or solar plexus, as quoted from the Health, Tuesday (18/10/2011):

1. Heart disease
Angina, or chest pain caused by lack of blood flow to the heart can cause a burning feeling in chest or solar plexus. "But the hallmark of a burning sensation in the chest due to heart disease usually occurs during or after a strenuous or moderate," said Ryan Madanick, MD, an assistant professor of the University of North Carolina School of Medicine.

If aged 50 years or more and feel the burning pain in the chest, especially if you've never experienced pain like that, can lead to suspicions that lead to angina. Suspicions may also appear at a younger age, but have cardiac risk factors such as hypertension, diabetes, or family history of heart disease.

2. Gallstone
Although gallstones are not always cause symptoms, but the stones can block the bile duct, so as to injure, usually in the middle or upper right abdomen. Symptoms can be painful cramps, dull or sharp and often attack a few minutes after eating.

"If you experience abdominal pain after eating and do not improve after taking the-counter medicines to suppress the acid, it can be suspected as gall stones," said Joel Richter, MD, chair of the department of medicine at the University School of Medicine, Philadelphia.

3. Sores (ulcers) in the abdomen
"Ulcers can cause a burning sensation, usually felt in the upper abdomen. The pain may find its way down to his chest," said Dr. Madanick.

Taking drugs to suppress stomach acid to relieve heartburn. But ulcers are usually caused by Helicobacter pylori, a bacterium that can burn the stomach lining. So that will need antibiotics to clear the infection.

Several anti-inflammatory drugs (like aspirin, ibuprofen, and naproxen), and osteoporosis drugs called bisphosphonates, may also cause stomach ulcers.

4. Hiatus hernia
Hiatus hernia occurs when part of the upper abdomen through the diaphragm into the chest cavity. This can cause food and stomach acid driven up into the esophagus and cause a burning sensation in the chest.

The signs of hiatus hernia include chest pain, belching and nausea. If you experience burning sensation in the chest due to hiatus hernia, the doctor will usually prescribe drugs to suppress stomach acid.

In addition, doctors will also recommend lifestyle changes such as eating smaller meals, avoid alcohol and not eating right before bed. In rare cases, surgical procedures can be an alternative treatment.

5. Esophageal esophagus
Esophageal cancer is rare, but incidence increases rapidly in the United States. If you feel a burning sensation in the chest, may be a sign of esophageal cancer.

Doctors may decide to perform an upper endoscopy to examine the esophagus if the patient experienced a burning sensation in the chest, especially if you smoke or consume alcohol. Smoking and alcohol consumption are risk factors for esophageal cancer.

Endoscopy is a test that involves a tube with a light and a camera that passes through one end of the throat and esophagus. During the test, the doctor can look for abnormal areas and collect tissue samples to conduct further tests for cancer.

6. Gastroparesis
Uncontrolled diabetes can cause nerve damage that can affect the digestive tract working. This is called gastroparesis, which can dramatically slow the movement of food through the stomach and can cause burning pain.

Treatment can include dietary changes such as eating smaller meals, fiber, avoid fat, avoid drugs. For people with very severe symptoms, can by inserting a feeding tube or an implantable device that emits electrical pulses that mimic the contraction of the abdomen.

7. Esophagitis
Esophagitis or inflammation of the pharynx, may be the result of acid reflux are all too often. These conditions in turn can cause a burning sensation in the chest, and difficulty swallowing.

The esophagus can also become inflamed because of taking certain painkillers and drugs for osteoporosis. Especially if the pill is swallowed without water, thus allowing the pill to remain in the esophagus.

The third type of esophagitis, eosinophilic esophagitis is called, occurs when white blood cells known as eosinophils attack the esophagus. The condition is often due to allergy related.

So that the treatment requires identifying and avoiding foods that can be an allergen. The doctor may also prescribe steroid medications to relieve inflammation.

8. Pleurisy or costochondritis
Inflammation of the lining of the lungs and chest cavity, known as pleuritis or pleurisy. Pleurisy can cause heartburn such as chest pain. "Allegations of pleuritis more powerful if the pain or burning gets worse when taking a deep breath," said Dr. Madanick.

Pleuritis is most often caused by viral or bacterial infection, and will recover when the infection was also cured. Costochondritis is an inflammation of the cartilage that hold the ribs to the chest.

Costochondritis can cause sharp pain along the chest or sternum. This can be related to injury or infection, and is usually treated with anti-inflammatory drugs.

9. Worry
Although anxiety will not cause GERD, but can cause heartburn and make GERD symptoms worse. Reduce anxiety and stress, for example with exercise, relaxation, and therapy, also can relieve heartburn. D

Dr. Madanick said that, as with other conditions that mimic GERD, many patients that burning sensation in his chest did not subside with the use of free drug. Because the OTC tends to relieve pain that is simple, "said Dr. Madanick.

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