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1.4.2 Can gastric reflux trigger asthma?




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This article is from the Asthma FAQ, by Patricia Wrean and Marie Goldenberg mwg@radix.net with numerous contributions by others.

1.4.2 Can gastric reflux trigger asthma?


Yes, gastric reflux can act as an irritant which triggers
asthma. Reflux, properly known as gastroesophageal reflux,
occurs when the liquids in the stomach pass up the esophagus,
or feeding tube. Because these liquids are usually highly
acidic, they can irritate and inflame the esophagus, and
also the airways of the lung, should any of this liquid be
aspirated. This irritation can trigger an asthma attack.

Asthma flares caused by reflux are more common at night,
for it is easier for material to pass up the esophagus when
one is lying down. Some simple treatments to prevent reflux
include raising the head of the bed, not eating close to
bedtime, or using either antacids or medications such as
ranitidine (Zantac) which reduce the amount of acid produced
by the stomach.

Contributed by: Betty Bridges bcb56@ix.netcom.com

 

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