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Friday, November 09, 2007

Dairy-Free Diet Can Help GERD

Gastroesophageal reflux disease is GERD, a problem that used to be diagnosed mostly in adults but now is being recognized as something that hits millions of children.

An article by Janice Billingsley on HealthDay.com gives the background:

Gastroesophageal reflux (GER) is a normal physiologic process that can occur throughout the day in healthy infants and children. Most episodes are brief and are typically confined to the lower esophagus, explained Dr. Aeri Moon, an assistant professor of pediatrics at Weill Cornell Medical College in New York City.

However, GER can worsen and become GERD when the stomach's contents move into the upper esophagus. While its prevalence has been noted among adults in recent years, GERD is frequently overlooked in youngsters, despite the fact that it affects as many as 7 million children, according to the Pediatric/Adolescent Gastroesophageal Reflux Association.

As with colic, GERD hits many babies under three months of age, but instead of stopping at that point GERD symptoms can last until the toddler is 15-18 months. Continuing vomited past the age of three months is a sign you should ask your doctor to consider GERD as a cause.

What happens then?
Diagnosing GERD first involves eliminating other conditions with similar symptoms, such as testing for milk or food allergies, colic or inflammation of the esophagus, and finding out if there is a family history of GERD. Further tests include screening of the esophagus and a test that measures acidity in the esophagus.

If a young child has GERD, therapy includes introducing a dairy-free diet and/or a hypoallergenic baby formula. Overfeeding can also exacerbate the condition.

The Pediatric/Adolescent Gastroesophageal Reflux Association (PAGER) has a site you can turn to for more information about GERD at reflux.org.

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2 comments:

GastroMastro said...

I was diagnosed with GERD, IBS, and lactose intolerance when I was 8 after several misdiagnoses throughout all my life. They think I have suffered from it since birth. Now I am 14 and can't get over just how many children suffer from GERD, IBS, and lactose intolerance. Many do not know or understand the diet that plays such an important role. With years of experience, my sisters and I have written a cookbook for children suffering from GERD, IBS, and Lactose Intolerance after I was diagnosed with these problems when I was only 8. If you want to know more about us visit:
sensitivetummies.com sensitivetummies.com/blog or sensitivetummies.com/blog2

ehealth city said...

Its a more common symptoms in adult and children and the most initial symptom is heartburn. gastroesophageal reflux in children