Medical Definition of Gastroesophageal reflux

  • Medical Author:
    William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR

    Dr. Shiel received a Bachelor of Science degree with honors from the University of Notre Dame. There he was involved in research in radiation biology and received the Huisking Scholarship. After graduating from St. Louis University School of Medicine, he completed his Internal Medicine residency and Rheumatology fellowship at the University of California, Irvine. He is board-certified in Internal Medicine and Rheumatology.

Gastroesophageal reflux: The return of stomach contents back up into the esophagus This frequently causes heartburn because of irritation of the esophagus by stomach acid.

Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) can lead to scarring and stricture of the esophagus, requiring stretching (dilating) of the esophagus. 10% of patients with gastroesophageal reflux disease develop Barrett's esophagus which increases the risk of cancer of the esophagus. 80% of patients with gastroesophageal reflux disease also have a hiatal hernia.

GERD illustration - Gastroesophageal reflux

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Reviewed on 12/12/2018

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