In the past there has been reliance on heartburn and acid regurgitation as the cardinal symptoms of gastro-esophageal reflux. Now it is recognized that diverse additional symptoms including extraesophageal manifestations are essential components of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). Furthermore, previous reliance in mucosal damage at endoscopy as evidence of therapeutic success in the management of GERD has proven of only limited value in the diverse world of GERD symptoms. Indeed is now apparent that the relationship between symptoms and lesions is modest at best. Most patients with GERD have no overt erosions or ulceration at endoscopy and they frequently suffer from a wide array of complaints other than heartburn that contribute to their diminished perception of life's quality. To address these problems, multidimensional questionnaires designed to encompass the diverse symptomatology of GERD have been investigated, principally, to provide a reproducible metric of change in the subjective response to pharmacologic therapy during trials for patients with nonerosive reflux disease. The most promising of these instruments is The ReQuest questionnaire, because it has been extensively validated in multiple patient groups and cultures, appears highly promising in this regard and for erosive disease too and may ultimately prove to be of value for the initial evaluation of patients with GERD. We propose that accurate symptom delineation complemented with endoscopy performed in selected groups of patients will become the mainstay in diagnosis of GERD and the assessment of therapy efficacy.