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New Nationwide Survey Identifies Need for Increased Dialogue Between Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease or Frequent Heartburn Sufferers and Health Care Providers
Date:3/23/2011

istent heartburn that occurs two or more days a week despite treatment and diet changes. Additional symptoms can include regurgitation (a sensation of food coming back into the mouth, accompanied by an acidic or bitter taste), sore throat, hoarseness, and a feeling of a lump in the throat. GERD affects both men and women and may be associated with serious complications over time.

"Recognizing and understanding the intensity and frequency of GERD symptoms is a key element in being able to diagnose and determine appropriate management and treatment strategies," says Prateek Sharma, M.D., professor of medicine in the Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, University of Kansas School of Medicine, Kansas City, Mo. "Some of these findings suggest that many patients trivialize their symptoms and thus don't talk to their health care provider about the impact GERD is having on their lives. I encourage my patients to be open and descriptive about what they're experiencing. Then, together we can work to determine a plan of action to address their specific needs."

Findings Highlight Need to Make GERD and/or Heartburn Dialogue a Priority

  • One-third (34 percent) of sufferers report waiting 12 months or more after first experiencing symptoms to visit their HCP.
  • Forty percent of respondents have not discussed symptoms with their HCP in the past 12 months.
  • Approximately one in five sufferers (22 percent, n=796) does not discuss their symptoms until the end of the appointment when the doctor is leaving or only if the doctor asks.
  • Seventy-four percent (n=919) of those who have spoken to their HCP about their GERD and/or heartburn symptoms discuss the severity of their symptoms.
  • One in five reports (n=919) having trouble getting their HCP to understand the severity of their symptoms.
  • Most sufferers report that food triggers their symptoms, specifically eating s
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SOURCE American Gastroenterological Association; Takeda Pharmaceutical North America, Inc.
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