Manhattan Gastroenterology
  • MIDTOWN 51 EAST 25TH, 4 FL New York, NY, 10010
  • UPPER EAST SIDE 983 PARK AVE, STE 1D New York, NY, 10028
  • UNION SQUARE 55 W. 17TH ST STE 102 New York, NY, 10011
Accolades and awards received by our specialists

Our Doctors

Our board-certified, highly rated gastroenterologists have undergone rigorous training in evaluating and treating a wide array of digestive diseases and are experts in GERD and heartburn diagnosis and management. Our goal is to provide safe and effective therapies in a warm and friendly environment.

Dr. Qin Rao, MD

Dr. Qin Rao, MD

Dr. Daniel Perl, MD

Dr. Daniel Perl, MD

Dr. Lauren Schwartz, MD

Dr. Lauren Schwartz, MD

Dr. Eric Yoon

Eric Yoon, MD

Dr. Kristen Lee

Kristen Lee, MD

Dr. Mikhail Yakubov

Mikhail Yakubov, MD

Dr. Michael Dann

Michael Dann, MD

Dr. Shawn Khodadadian

Shawn Khodadadian, MD

★ ★ ★ ★ ★ I’ve never seen such a good doctor before. I explained my situation my concern. He explained everything in detail peacefully and clearly with a smile, including what and when the following procedures gonna happen. What a nice consultation experience! Google ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ I have been to this clinic a few times and it has always been hassle free. The staff are welcoming and friendly and Dr Dann is great. He’s very thorough and takes the time to explain everything properly. ZocDoc ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ The office was very nice, I waited for only a minute or two before being taken to an exam room and then seen by the doctor. He was very kind, explained everything fully and I feel very comfortable with his plan for addressing the issue. I would absolutely recommend Dr. Yabukov. Yelp ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ My son had an endoscopy by Dr Kristen Lee. He only had wonderful things to say about her and the entire staff. Upon meeting her today, I felt very comfortable and confident in her advice regarding my concerns. Dr Lee was very professional, and friendly. zocdoc (212) 378-9983

Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) occurs when acidic juices from your stomach splash back into your esophagus (“acid reflux”), irritating the esophageal lining. Heartburn is another name for this burning sensation. For an accurate diagnosis and to rule out other causes, persistent GERD symptoms or new onset of acid reflux symptoms should always be evaluated with a thorough consultation and examination by a doctor. Persistent heartburn symptoms can progress to Barrett’s esophagus, which is a precursor to esophageal cancer. This condition is commonly evaluated and treated by our gastroenterologists at our offices.

★ ★ ★ ★ ★I came in for a consultation for an issue I’ve been having with my stomach for about two months. Dr. Yakubov was very kind, informative and made me feel at ease about my current situation. He took his time to explain to me what the issue could be and answered all of my questions and concerns. The office is very beautiful and clean as well.

What Is GERD?

gastro reflux

Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) is a digestive dysfunction affecting the lower esophageal sphincter (LES), a bundle of muscles between the stomach and the esophagus. Many people have heartburn or acid indigestion as a result of GERD. The tube that connects your mouth to your stomach is known as the esophagus. It has two sphincters, one at the top of your throat and one near your stomach.

Typically, the lower esophageal sphincter (or LES) maintains a strong grip, allowing the one-way flow of food into your stomach. However, if the LES weakens or doesn’t close properly, the digestive enzymes and acid in your stomach can escape back up into your esophagus.

Many people experience acid reflux symptoms after eating certain foods. In these instances, over-the-counter drugs may be effective in temporarily alleviating GERD symptoms such as a burning throat. Your doctor can help diagnose the condition and place you on the correct medication or prescribe lifestyle modifications as needed.

What Are the Symptoms of Acid Reflux?

gastro reflux symptoms

Heartburn and acid regurgitation are common acid reflux symptoms. Heartburn begins with a burning sensation in the chest. It can occasionally rise into your throat, producing a sour taste and a burning sensation. When you experience this symptom, it’s called acid regurgitation.

Other GERD symptoms include unexplained chest pain, shortness of breath, and radiating arm pain. These can be signs of a heart problem, and you should seek immediate medical attention and call 911. More worrisome symptoms include difficulty swallowing, unexplained weight loss, blood in the stool, and others, which the specialist should immediately evaluate.

A thorough consultation and examination by a physician should be performed to establish an accurate diagnosis and develop an acid reflux treatment plan, as well as to rule out any other conditions. Chronic GERD symptoms can lead to Barrett’s esophagus, which is a precursor to esophageal cancer and can be diagnosed with an upper endoscopy.

What Causes Acid Reflux and the symptoms of Heartburn?

Gastroesophageal reflux disease occurs when the muscle between your stomach and esophagus (the LES) weakens. There are many causes of acid reflux. Most of them are lifestyle-related and include obesity, pregnancy, diabetes, cigarette smoking, asthma, alcohol abuse, and consuming certain foods and beverages such as:

  • Carbonated beverages;
  • Chocolate;
  • Citrus drinks, including juices;
  • Coffee;
  • Fatty foods;
  • Peppermint;
  • Tomato-based products.

A hiatal hernia, which allows parts of your stomach to move past your diaphragm into your chest, is another possible cause. Although not everyone with a hiatal hernia will experience GERD symptoms, the hernia increases the likelihood of the disease. Heartburn is a GERD symptom caused by acid refluxing back into the esophagus.

How Is GERD Diagnosed?

An upper endoscopy allows your gastroenterologist to visually assess any damage to your esophageal lining. If necessary, they can take a tissue biopsy for further testing. Based on your consultation, your doctor will decide whether this test will be included in the workup and whether further tests may be required for the specialists to establish an accurate GERD diagnosis.

During the endoscopy, our doctors use an endoscope, a small tube with a light at the end, to examine your esophagus and stomach, as well as the upper portion of your small intestine, called the duodenum. pH testing can also be a valuable part of the workup. pH testing allows for us to measure the amount of acid in your esophagus. Our physician can perform this test by either attaching a small sensor to your esophagus during an endoscopy or placing a thin, flexible probe into your esophagus. The probe or sensor delivers data to a small device that you carry on your belt and can provide useful information.

How to Treat GERD?

Acid reflux symptoms can sometimes go away on their own if certain dietary or lifestyle excesses are reduced or eliminated. Aside from avoiding the foods and beverages indicated above, you can alleviate your heartburn symptoms by following these tips:

  • Avoid eating within three hours of bedtime;
  • Maintain a healthy weight;
  • Prop up the head of your bed four to six inches;
  • Quit cigarette smoking.

We recommend that you schedule an appointment with our GI specialist to evaluate and examine your symptoms and receive an accurate diagnosis. Our doctor will determine whether further testing is required and if you should be screened for Barrett’s esophagus.

Over-the-counter drugs reduce stomach acid production and are safe and effective for treating mild cases. Other medications known as proton pump inhibitors are also effective for treating your GERD symptoms while also helping your body heal. These drugs prevent particular acids from being produced in your stomach. Medication management should be guided by your gastroenterologist’s advice. In some cases, advanced endoscopic procedures or surgery are necessary.

If the doctor recommends surgery, a procedure known as fundoplication is an option. This procedure wraps part of your stomach around the lower end of your esophagus to strengthen the barrier between your esophagus and stomach. Other surgical and endoscopic options are also available for difficult-to-treat patients, and we can discuss them during your consultation.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Are GERD Risk Factors?

You are at a higher risk of getting exposed to this medical condition if you:

  • Are pregnant
  • Have a connective tissue disorder
  • Are obese
  • Have a hiatal hernia

The disease can worsen if you:

  • Eat large meals
  • Drink alcohol
  • Take NSAIDs
  • Eat right before going to bed
  • Drink a lot of coffee
  • Smoke

Are There Any Complications of Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease?

In the long run, chronic inflammation in your esophagus can lead to the following GERD complications:

  • Precancerous changes to the esophagus. Acid damage can lead to abnormalities in the tissue lining the lower esophagus. These changes may raise the risk of esophageal cancer.
  • An open sore in the esophageal ulcer. Stomach acid can wear away the tissue in the esophagus, resulting in an open sore. An esophageal ulcer can bleed, causing severe pain.
  • Narrowing of the esophageal stricture. Scar tissue develops when stomach acid damages the lower esophagus.

How To Prevent Acid Reflux and Heartburn?

GERD prevention should start with the implementation of several lifestyle changes, including:

  • Avoid lying down after a meal. You should wait at least three hours after a meal before going to bed or lying down.
  • Stop smoking. If you smoke, your lower esophageal sphincter’s ability to function correctly can decrease.
  • Keep a healthy weight. Excess weight strains your abdomen, forcing your stomach up and causing acid reflux into your esophagus.
  • Chew thoroughly and consume food slowly. As an option, you can put down your fork every time you take a bite and pick it up again only if you have chewed and swallowed that bite.
  • Stay away from foods that trigger reflux. Common triggers are tomato sauce, alcohol, chocolate, garlic, onion, caffeine, and fried foods.
  • Do not wear tight-fitting clothes. Tight clothing around your waist puts undue strain on your lower esophageal sphincter and abdomen.

What Medications Are Over The Counter? Do You Need Prescriptions?

If diet and lifestyle changes alone fail to improve symptoms, therapy through medicines may be the best next step in the treatment of GERD. Some medications, such as antacids, H-2-receptor blockers, and proton pump inhibitors (PPIs), are available over-the-counter. The dosage levels of OTC H2 blockers and PPIs are lower than those of prescription counterparts. They’re perfectly safe to take for temporary relief of minor discomfort. However, if OTC medications do not resolve your symptoms or if they reoccur frequently, prescription-strength versions may be warranted.

Important Reminder: The only intent of this information is to provide guidance, not definitive medical advice. Please consult a GI doctor about your specific condition. Only trained, experienced gastroenterologists can determine an accurate diagnosis and proper heartburn treatment.

As the best-in-class NYC gastroenterologists, we provide highly personalized and comprehensive care. For more information about the GI conditions we treat, including Heartburn / GERD Treatment, or to schedule a consultation with one of our GI doctors, please contact our Union Square/Chelsea, Midtown, or Upper East Side NYC offices.