GERD (gastroesophageal reflux disease) is when stomach contents "reflux" upward from the stomach into the esophagus through the lower esophageal sphincter (LES). Normally, the LES acts as a one-way valve, enabling food to pass downward into the stomach but not upward into the esophagus. Chronic exposure to refluxed material such as stomach acid, enzymes, and bile causes irritation of the esophagus that can result in inflammation (esophagitis), ulceration, and pain.
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GERD can cause a wide range of symptoms
— Persistent heartburn
— Choking episodes at night
— Chest pain
— Difficulty or pain when swallowing
— Chronic sore throat or cough
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