Up to 40% of Americans suffer from GERD. GERD, short for gastroesophageal reflux disease, is a condition of serious and prolonged heartburn. In the worst cases, severe GERD symptoms will result.
What are severe GERD symptoms? These can be classified as the worst and most painful of acid reflux symptoms. Here, I will outline what these are so you can identify them. Anyone with severe GERD symptoms should see a doctor soon, or even seek a second opinion if they are not responding to the current regime of medication.
Severe Heartburn - this is the most obvious of severe GERD symptoms and unique to GERD (although, as the name implies, it can sometimes be confused with symptoms of a heart attack which are actually very different). Severe heartburn is felt as an intense burning sensation that travels from the stomach to the throat where it usually diminishes after a few seconds.
Regurgitation - many GERD sufferers never experience regurgitation which is seen in more severe cases. We know that GERD results because the lower sphincter allows the escape of acid. When the upper sphincter also fails in its function, severe GERD symptoms such as this can result. As well as bringing up foul tasting acid, food and liquid are also often brought up. If this occurs on a regular basis, acid erosion of the teeth can also occur.
Nausea - most GERD sufferers do not experience this feeling of being sick but in some rare cases, those with this condition have prolonged feelings of nausea, often resulting in vomiting. In the absence of anything other obvious cause (such as pregnancy or illness), GERD is often suspected as a cause of nausea.
Hoarse Voice and Sore Throat - these severe GERD symptoms occur when the LES fails and the throat becomes inflamed. Acid in the region of the vocal chords can cause the voice to deteriorate over time and cause the voice to become more hoarse. This latter symptom, in particular, is rarely seen.
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