Heartburn: Drugs and Surgery

Medical Heartburn Remedies

Like you, many millions of people still suffer today from heartburn and most of them are constantly searching for drugs and treatment methods for relief. You have to keep in mind that heartburn is a condition that has existed for thousands of years and modern medicine has yet to find a complete cure for this condition.

You also should understand that heartburn is not actually related to the heart. It’s simply called “heartburn” because you will feel a burning sensation in your chest. It is, of course, a digestive condition, brought about by irritation of the tissue in the esophagus when stomach acid comes into contact with it.

Most people treat heartburn symptoms through lifestyle modification and the use of antacids. But, for some people, this doesn’t work. If you still suffer from heartburn symptoms despite making lifestyle changes and using antacid tablets or liquids, it may be a sign that you are suffering from a more serious condition where heartburn is only a symptom.

Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), or gastro-oesophageal reflux disease (GORD) can be incredibly annoying and quite painful to live with. Many natural heartburn remedies are available, however many people will opt to see their doctor or a specialist for treatment involving drugs or surgery for severe acid reflux problems.

If this is so, then your health care provider or doctor may prescribe you some of the following medications. After antacids, the next group of drugs that you may opt to take for easing heartburn symptoms is histamine-2 blockers. Most drugs of this type may be purchased over the counter and they work by decreasing the amount of acid that your stomach produces. Usually, they are taken twice a day and they provide relief from heartburn within 30 minutes of taking it. You must remember that although it may be purchased over the counter, you still need a doctor’s prescription for higher doses.

If you still continue to experience heartburn, the doctor may recommend adding a drug, such as metoclopramide. This drug will empty food and acid from your stomach quickly. This will lessen the amount of food and acid traveling back in to the esophagus. It will also help tighten the LES or lower esophageal sphincter muscle to keep stomach acid inside the stomach.

Proton pump inhibitors may also be prescribed by your doctor if you continue to experience heartburn. This type of medication will prevent the stomach from secreting acid. Usually taken once a day, these drugs are usually very effective in easing heartburn symptoms. And, these drugs are usually prescribed if no other drugs have helped your acid reflux condition.

There are also surgical procedures that can help your problem with heartburn. Surgery is usually done if no prescription drugs helped in relieving heartburn or if you are already experiencing serious complications from heartburn. The surgery is a simple procedure and is called fundoplication. This procedure will tighten your LES muscle and the muscle will also be tied in such a way to prevent acid from flowing back into the esophagus. This surgical procedure has produced an 85 percent success rate and is the last resort for treating heartburn.

These are the major types of drugs and surgery that you may wish to consider and discuss with your doctor if you are suffering from severe acid reflux, heartburn and GERD problems. If antacids no longer work, you may want to consult your doctor about your heartburn problem. They may prescribe the above mentioned drugs and may even recommend surgery if the drugs no longer work in providing relief from heartburn.

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