Understanding Heartburn

Heartburn happens when stomach acid enters the esophagus due to a valve malfunction. This leads to a distinct burning sensation concentrated in the chest. The improper functioning of the valve allows acidic content to travel upward, causing irritation. This condition, often mistaken for heart-related pain, can be triggered by factors such as lying down after a meal or consuming specific foods. Understanding these aspects is crucial for managing heartburn and seeking appropriate care to alleviate discomfort effectively.

Heartburn Symptoms

Heartburn radiates through the throat with a burning sensation, especially after lying down. It also occurs after consuming late-night, rich, or acidic meals. Symptoms may last minutes to hours, accompanied by burping, nausea, and regurgitation. Atypical signs include bloating, hiccups, chronic cough, and difficulty swallowing.

woman pressing chest looking at pizza she ate

Causes of Heartburn

Heartburn results from stomach acid moving through the esophagus. This occurs because of a weakened lower esophageal sphincter. Contributing factors include smoking, abdominal pressure, hiatal hernia, and more. Identifying triggers with your provider can help reduce instances of discomfort.

woman holding her chest with both hands

Testing and Diagnosis

Diagnosis involves describing symptoms to a healthcare provider. Chronic cases may need tests like an upper endoscopy to examine the GI tract. It may also be necessary to test acid levels. Your care provider will work with you to understand the severity and determine treatment.

Treatment at Schneck

Managing heartburn begins with OTC medications and lifestyle changes. Medications include antacids, histamine receptor antagonists, and proton pump inhibitors. Lifestyle adjustments involve healthier, spaced-out meals, avoiding triggers identified in discussion with your provider, and weight maintenance. Also, avoid lying down after meals and abstain from smoking. Some minimally invasive procedures like LINX®, Transoral Incisionless Fundoplication (TIF), Nissen or Toupet Fundoplications, or Roux-en-Y may be necessary for severe cases to prevent acid from re-entering the esophagus. We have established the Schneck Heartburn Center to specifically address chronic heartburn symptoms. If you are seeking heartburn relief, visit our knowledgeable providers, who can help you make informed decisions for a happier, healthier life.

Schneck Heartburn Center Providers

Schneck's expert healthcare providers offer personalized care. We guide patients through effective treatments and healthy lifestyle adjustments.

G Brandon Millick

G. Brandon Millick, MD

Bariatrics/Surgical Weight Loss, General Surgery, da Vinci Surgery View Info »

Cathy R. Hildebrand, NP

Bariatrics/Surgical Weight Loss View Info »

Find Relief at Schneck Heartburn Center

If you're experiencing weekly heartburn or atypical symptoms, seek care from Schneck Heartburn Center. Dedicated providers assess conditions, perform tests, and develop customized plans for relief. Trust our providers for comprehensive care and relief from persistent heartburn discomfort.

Call 812-522-1613