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The backup, or reflux, of stomach acids and juices into the esophagus that occurs with gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) can wear away (erode) the lining of the esophagus and cause sores, called ulcers.
GERD is caused when stomach acid and juices reflux into the esophagus. This happens when the valve between the lower end of the esophagus and the stomach (the lower esophageal sphincter) does not close tightly. This reflux can cause irritation, inflammation, or wearing away of the lining of the esophagus, which is called esophagitis.
In severe cases, patches of the lining of the esophagus wear away completely, and ulcers may develop. Ulcers can be shallow or deep and can destroy the lining of the esophagus where they develop.
Treatment for ulcers in the esophagus usually means treating the GERD that caused the ulcer in the first place. Treatment for GERD usually involves one of two options:
|Primary Medical Reviewer||Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine|
|Specialist Medical Reviewer||Peter J. Kahrilas, MD - Gastroenterology|
|Last Revised||March 6, 2012|
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