Benjamin Wedro, MD, FACEP, FAAEM
Dr. Ben Wedro practices emergency medicine at Gundersen Clinic, a regional trauma center in La Crosse, Wisconsin. His background includes undergraduate and medical studies at the University of Alberta, a Family Practice internship at Queen's University in Kingston, Ontario and residency training in Emergency Medicine at the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center.
Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD
Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD, is a U.S. board-certified Anatomic Pathologist with subspecialty training in the fields of Experimental and Molecular Pathology. Dr. Stöppler's educational background includes a BA with Highest Distinction from the University of Virginia and an MD from the University of North Carolina. She completed residency training in Anatomic Pathology at Georgetown University followed by subspecialty fellowship training in molecular diagnostics and experimental pathology.
In this Article
- Overview of Heartburn
- Heartburn Causes
- Heartburn Symptoms
- Heartburn Diagnosis
- Heartburn Treatment
- Heartburn Medication
- Heartburn Surgery
- Heartburn Summary
- Eat smaller, more frequent meals
- Avoid eating before bedtime
- Avoid alcohol, aspirin, ibuprofen, and caffeine
- Stop smoking
- Elevate the head of the bed (or use two or three pillows) to allow gravity to keep acid in the stomach and avoid acid reflux.
Antacids may be taken after meals, at bedtime, or when needed, to bind excess acid in the stomach and to coat the esophagus.
Histamine H2 antagonists are medications that block the action of histamine (a chemical that stimulates stomach cells to produce acid) on the acid-producing cells of the stomach. This decreases acid production to hopefully decrease symptoms. Examples include:
Some H2 blockers and proton pump inhibitors are available OTC without a prescription. However, there may be potential interactions with some prescription medications. Check with your health care professional or pharmacist for advice about their safe use.
Proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) are another class of drugs that block the production of acid by the stomach. PPIs include:
- omeprazole (Prilosec, Rapinex),
- rabeprazole (Aciphex)
- pantoprazole (Protonix)
- lansoprazole (Prevacid), and
- esomeprazole (Nexium).
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