Ailments & Remedies

Ailments List

Heartburn

 

Overview

A gastroesophageal reflux disease, heartburn is a burning sensation within the oesophagus due to acid reflux. The painful burning sensation starts within the chest and expands to the neck and the throat. It is carachterised by a strong cough, slight asthma, a burning and painful sensation. At times it is confused with a heart attack as the pain starts near the heart region.

 

Causes

Heartburn may be caused when the lower oesophageal (LES) does not close completely allowing the stomach acid to damage the lower oesophagus. Pressure on the stomach that could be due to weight lifting, straining, coughing, tight clothing, obesity or pregnancy may be other causes for heartburn. Certain medical conditions like hernia or diabetes might also bring heartburn. Autoimmune diseases, certain kinds of medication, spicy food and smoke could possibly be other causes.

 

Symptoms

The pain of heartburn may be described as a burning pain in the chest. The pain may spread into the throat, jaw arms or back. Heartburn might occur after meal, 30 to 60 minutes after eating. A person may have to seek emergency care if vomiting blood or passing blood in the stool occur. Severe pain, dizziness, difficulty in swallowing, dehydration or unintentional weight loss could be other symptoms of heartburn.

 

Diagnosis

A doctor will take a detailed medical history of the patient and make an in depth study of the symptoms to confirm a diagnosis. In certain cases, the doctor may prescribe some tests or procedures that might help to ascertain the weakness of the LES or its muscle.

 

Treatment

In heartburn cases, the doctor may suggest the use of antacids to provide relief. Sometimes, in very rare cases, surgery might be required. A nutritionist may be consulted to advise on necessary diet changes. The patient may be advised to refrain from eating those foods that can cause heartburn.



Common Remedies

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