Dr Eric Wee, our Senior Consultant at Nobel Gastroenterology Centre was invited to deliver a talk on digestive problems. One of the most common questions asked by the audience was on acid reflux and bloating.
This refers to the passage of acid from the stomach back into the chest. Heartburn is common when this happens. One may experience pain below the ribs too. This can be caused by a loosening of the valve that is located between the stomach and esophagus (hiatus hernia).
Excessive belching may signify a problem in the stomach such as an infection by H.pylori or gastritis. Rarely, a cancer may be blocking the passage of food causing these symptoms. A loss of appetite is often present.
A detailed interview and physical examination will ensure that the correct tests (e.g. endoscopy, scans) are performed.
Medicines are not the only solution. Lifestyle changes and a modification to one’s sleeping posture can have a positive impact on acid reflux as well.