Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) is one of the most common problems treated by primary care physicians. Almost 20% of the population in the United States experiences occasional regurgitation, heartburn, or retrosternal pain because of GERD. Reflux disease is complex, and the physiology and pathogenesis are still incompletely understood. However, abnormalities of any one or a combination of the three physiologic processes, namely, esophageal motility, lower esophageal sphincter function, and gastric motility or emptying, can lead to GERD. There are many diagnostic and therapeutic approaches to GERD today, but more studies are needed to better understand this complex disease process.
Keywords: GERD; Gastroesophageal reflux disease; Heartburn; Pathogenesis of GERD; Pathology of GERD.
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