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Understanding Reflux Oesophagitis: Causes, Symptoms, and Treatment Options

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MrMed Pharmacy
Understanding Reflux Oesophagitis: Causes, Symptoms, and Treatment Options

Reflux oesophagitis is a common condition that affects the lining of the oesophagus, which is the tube that connects the throat to the stomach. It is caused by the backflow of stomach acid and other digestive juices into the oesophagus, which can irritate and inflame the lining. This article will provide an overview of the causes, symptoms, and treatment options for reflux oesophagitis.

Causes of Reflux Oesophagitis:

Reflux oesophagitis is caused by a malfunction of the lower oesophageal sphincter (LES), which is the muscle that separates the oesophagus from the stomach. Normally, the LES opens to allow food and liquids to pass into the stomach and then closes to prevent the backflow of stomach contents into the oesophagus. However, in some people, the LES may not function properly, leading to reflux oesophagitis.

Some factors that may contribute to the development of reflux oesophagitis include:

  • Obesity or being overweight
  • Smoking
  • Pregnancy
  • Hiatal hernia
  • Certain medications, such as NSAIDs and calcium channel blockers
  • Certain foods and drinks, such as spicy or fatty foods, caffeine, and alcohol
  • Stress and anxiety

Symptoms of Reflux Oesophagitis:

The most common symptom of reflux oesophagitis is heartburn, which is a burning sensation in the chest that may spread to the throat or neck. Other symptoms may include:

  • Expulsion of recently ingested food or liquid
  • Difficulty swallowing or a sensation of food getting stuck in the throat
  • Chest pain
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Coughing or wheezing
  • Hoarseness or sore throat
  • Bad breath

If left untreated, reflux oesophagitis can lead to complications such as bleeding, ulcers, scarring, and a condition called Barrett's oesophagus, which is a risk factor for oesophageal cancer.

Treatment Options for Reflux Oesophagitis:

Treatment for reflux oesophagitis depends on the severity of the condition and the presence of complications. Some treatment options include:

  1. Lifestyle modifications: These may include avoiding trigger foods and drinks, losing weight, quitting smoking, and reducing stress.
  2. Medications: Proton pump inhibitors such as pantoprazole (Pan 40 tablet) helps in reducing the gastric acid secretion which help managing this condition.
  3. Surgery: In some cases, surgery may be recommended to strengthen the LES or repair a hiatal hernia.

It is important to consult a healthcare provider if you experience symptoms of reflux oesophagitis, as they can help determine the underlying cause and provide appropriate treatment. With proper management, most people with reflux oesophagitis can find relief from their symptoms and prevent complications.

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