Gastroesophageal reflux disease (or GERD) occurs when stomach acids back up into the esophagus. This is the tube that takes food from your throat to your stomach. GERD can happen in adults and older children when the area between the lower end of the esophagus and the stomach does not close tightly. It also can happen in infants. This occurs because their digestive tracts are still growing.
GERD can cause babies to vomit, cry, and act fussy. They may have trouble breastfeeding or taking a bottle. Older children may have the same symptoms as adults. They may cough a lot. And they may have a burning feeling in the chest and throat. Most often GERD is not a sign that there is a serious problem. It often goes away by the end of an infant's first year. Symptoms in older children may go away with home treatment or medicines.
The doctor has checked your child carefully, but problems can develop later. If you notice any problems or new symptoms, get medical treatment right away.
Follow-up care is a key part of your child's treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments, and call your doctor or nurse call line if your child is having problems. It's also a good idea to know your child's test results and keep a list of the medicines your child takes.
Call your doctor or nurse call line now or seek immediate medical care if:
Watch closely for changes in your child's health, and be sure to contact your doctor or nurse call line if:
Go to https://www.healthwise.net/patientEd
Enter L132 in the search box to learn more about "Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD) in Children: Care Instructions".
Current as of: March 28, 2018
Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine
& E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine & Arvydas D. Vanagunas, MD, FACP, FACG - Gastroenterology
©2006-2018 Healthwise, Incorporated. Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.
Care instructions adapted under license by your healthcare professional. If you have questions about a medical condition or this instruction, always ask your healthcare professional. Healthwise, Incorporated disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information.