Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD), also called reflux, is a chronic disease that affects an estimated 1 in 5 U.S. adults. If you are one of them, you know how life-altering this condition can be.
GERD is caused by a weak lower esophageal sphincter (LES) that allows acid and bile to move up, or “reflux”, from the stomach into the esophagus, often causing injury to the lining of the esophagus and symptoms such as, heartburn, chest pain, regurgitation, sore throat, and cough. When left untreated, GERD can lead to serious complications including narrowing/stricture, Barrett’s esophagus, and esophageal cancer.
The LES is a muscle at the junction of the esophagus and stomach that functions as the body’s natural barrier to reflux. The LES acts like a valve, allowing food and liquid to pass through to the stomach. Normally, the LES resists opening to gastric pressures to prevent reflux, but in people with GERD, the LES is weak and allows acid and bile to reflux from the stomach into the esophagus.
GERD can be debilitating, causing daily pain, leading to poor sleep, affecting food tolerance, and limiting daily activities.
Medications for GERD are designed to control or suppress acid production in the stomach. They don’t address the cause of GERD and may not prevent reflux. Studies show that approximately 40% of GERD sufferers continue to have symptoms while taking medications for it.
Now there is a surgery to help GERD sufferers solve the problem permanently without taking medications for it. The LINX® System is a small, flexible band of magnets enclosed in titanium beads. The beads are connected by titanium wires. The magnetic attraction between the beads helps keep the weak LES closed to prevent reflux. Swallowing forces temporarily break the magnetic bond, allowing food and liquid to pass into the stomach. Magnetic attraction closes the LES after swallowing, to reinforce the body’s natural barrier to reflux.
If you are one of the many people suffering from uncontrolled GERD, schedule a consultation with Dr. Tsuda to see if the LINX® System is an option for you.
Read more online at: http://www.fda.gov/NewsEvents/Newsroom/PressAnnouncements/ucm296923.htm