FROM OUR EXPERTS
Heartburn is one of those symptoms that seriously commands your attention. First off, it can really hurt. Odds are good that your skin has rarely felt as fiery as your belly may feel during an attack of heartburn. Secondly, while it doesn't actually involve your heart, heartburn can give you the sense that something is amiss deep among your vital organs.
Heartburn can be a problem that you should bring to your doctor's attention. But as painful as this common condition can be, it's also something that you can also help treat and prevent on your own.
Heartburn arises when the contents of your stomach move the wrong way. The food and drink you swallow is supposed to only travel south from your mouth, but during heartburn, food, drink, and stomach juices move upward past the "doorway" between your esophagus and stomach. Your esophagus isn't as naturally protected against this harsh material as your stomach lining, thus it causes pain.
If heartburn strikes you often e...
News round up on popular heartburn drugs and a link to increased hip fractures. The New York Times ran an AP wire story. Study Finds a Link Between Some Heartburn Drugs and Hip Injuries in People Over 50 CHICAGO, Dec. 26 (AP) — People over 50 who took popular heartburn drugs for a year or more had a significant increase in the risk of breaking a hip, a large study in Britain found. The drugs are taken by millions of people who suffer from a condition in which stomach acid backs up into the esophagus. The researchers speculated that by reducing acid in the stomach, the drugs also make it more difficult for the body to absorb calcium, which can lead to weaker bones and fractures. Hip fractures in the elderly often lead to life-threatening complications. Consequently, doctors should not keep patients on the drugs long term without good reason, said Dr. Yu-Xiao Yang of the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, an author of the study. Men in the study had a ...
Heartburn, also known as gastric reflux or indigestion, happens after you eat and food is in your stomach. In the stomach, food is broken down by acids. Usually these acids stay in your stomach because a valve blocks the acids from going up the esophagus. Sometimes this valve doesn't work properly because the muscle weakens. When this happens, gastric acids can travel up the esophagus and cause a burning sensation -- this is heartburn. When these acids travel up into the mouth and then down into the lungs, they can cause gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD).
Symptoms of heartburn and GERD include:
irritating burning sensation in the chest or throat
middle back pain
bitter, acidic taste in the mouth
an increase in the burning sensation while lying down
Breast cancer treatments that can cause heartburn and GERD are:
Tykerb (chemical name: lapatinib), a targeted therapy
Bisphosphonates, medicines that are used to protect bones during breast cancer treat...
You should know
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