Gastroesophageal reflux disease or GERD is a common ailment that affects 10-20% of the population in the western world. GERD occurs when acid from the stomach refluxes back up to the esophagus. This may irritate the lining of hte esophagus resulting in esophagitis. The most common symptoms include heartburn and regurgitation. Heartburn is typically characterized as burning sensation. However, some patients may experiences more unique or extra-esophageal symptoms such as cough, hoarseness, sour brash, difficulty swallowing, nausea and abdominal pain. Indications for an EGD or upper endoscopy (as outlined in TABLE 2 of the ASGE position paper on GERD : 1306 GASTROINTESTINAL ENDOSCOPY Volume 81, No. 6 : 2015 )
include but are not limited due the following :
Persistent or progressive symptoms despite medical therapy, difficulty of pain with swallowing, weight loss, GI bleeding, anemia, persistent vomiting, screening for Barrett's esophagus in selected patients with more long standing symptoms.