You’ve shared a great meal with your friends and family and are enjoying conversation and time together when suddenly there is an uninvited guest. All you can think of is the burning pain in your chest. The food that brought pleasure earlier now brings pain. The enjoyment of friends and family is now lost to the misery of your physical discomfort.
If this is a familiar story to you, you may be experiencing acid reflux.
Acid reflux occurs when stomach acid that aids in digestion moves up into the esophagus. It is a burning sensation in your chest that may even extend to your throat. Because our stomach has a protective lining, this acid does not damage our stomach. Our esophagus on the other hand does not have this protective lining. Therefore, when stomach acid leaks into the esophagus, you feel its presence. Acid reflux is a common experience, but when it becomes a constant companion, it can adversely affect your everyday life.
Consistent acid reflux could be an indicator of a more serious problem.
Amazingly, our bodies have a small valve at the junction between our esophagus and our stomach called the lower esophageal sphincter (LES). This valve opens when we swallow food and then closes off the esophagus protecting it from stomach acid. When this valve becomes weak, stomach acid regularly leaks back into the esophagus. This is known as gastroesophageal reflux disease. You may experience symptoms such as a burning sensation in the chest, chronic cough, asthma, or even hoarseness.
Circumstances which promote reflux include:
- Hiatal Hernia
- Poor nutrition – such as drinking sodas, eating spicy or greasy foods
- Lying down right after eating
Thankfully, gastroesophageal reflux disease can be treated. LINX is a minimally invasive procedure that helps strengthen the sphincter by placing a small bracelet of magnetic beads at the junction of the esophagus and stomach. These beads are weak enough to allow the passage of food while being strong enough to keep the sphincter closed. Holding stomach acid where it belongs. This outpatient surgery typically takes about an hour and has a quick recovery.
Many people experience acid reflux on occasion, but when it becomes a constant companion, it’s time to talk to your doctor. Through LINX, healing is possible. Contact Dr. Ahmad today and get back to enjoying your friends and family around the dinner table without concern of an uninvited guest.
Dr. Arif Ahmad specializes in laparoscopic robotic surgery and has performed over 2,000 laparoscopic robotic surgeries. He is renowned in the Long Island area for his impeccable track record of safety and success.