Using Manometry to Diagnose Reflux

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Reflux, also known as GERD, causes patients to experience irritation and pain—usually after eating. It causes stomach acids to travel the wrong way into the esophagus from the stomach due to the lower esophageal sphincter not functioning properly. Normally, the lower esophageal sphincter keeps acids in the stomach where they belong.

Doctors at Palmyra Surgical in Georgia use manometry to determine how the muscles of the upper and lower esophageal sphincters are performing. Manometry determines if the muscles relax properly and if they allow food to travel through the esophagus appropriately.

This accurate diagnostic test helps determine a patient’s treatment options, including finding out if a patient is a candidate for surgery or medication. In some patients, weight loss surgery may be used to treat the symptoms of reflux.

Because manometry involves a thin tube being inserted into the esophagus via the nose, some patients find the procedure uncomfortable. Fortunately, it is a very common diagnostic tool and doctors and nurses are highly skilled in completing it as painlessly and quickly as possible.

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