You might think it's heartburn , but is that fire in your midsection perhaps something more serious? GERD, Gastroesophageal reflux disease , is chronic digestive disease that occurs when stomach acid or bile flows back (refluxes) into your esophagus. This backwashing of acid irritates the lining of your esophagus and causes GERD symptoms. According Dr. Jonathan Finegold, a board certified gastroenterologist at Lawrence Hospital in Bronxville, NY, and a member of the Westmed Medical Group , GERD's symptoms sometimes strike you in an innocuous manner: "If you ever wake up in the morning with the sensation that something is stuck in your throat or upper chest, or notice a burning sensation in your chest after eating," he said, "You might have GERD."
Other symptoms can include a burning sensation in your chest (heartburn) that sometimes spreads to the throat, along with a sour taste in your mouth. Additionally, you might have chest pain, difficulty swallowing (dysphagia), a dry cough and hoarseness or sore throat, among other manifestations.
If you want to learn more about GERD, Dr. Finegold will be addressing the topic at the Grinton I. Will Public Library in Yonkers, NY, Monday Sept. 26, from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. Call (914) 787-1000 for more information.