One of the tests that a doctor may run is called an endoscopy. During an endoscopy, a tube with a camera is placed through the patient’s mouth into the throat so that the doctor can look for any damage in the esophagus or stomach lining. The equipment used for an endoscopy also allows the doctor to take a biopsy of the lining of the esophagus or stomach.
Another test that can be done is called esophageal manometry. This test is used for people who are experiencing heartburn, chest pain, or for someone who has trouble swallowing. This test is similar to an endoscopy in that a tube is placed through your mouth and into your throat. This tube moves in wave-like motions down the throat and into the esophagus.
Neither an endoscopy nor an esophageal manometry test are painful, but both tests are performed while the patient is under anesthesia so as to reduce stress and eliminate the gag reflex. Therefore, before conducting either of these tests, your doctor will need to know what other medications you are on or if there is any chance that you are pregnant.
If your doctor diagnoses acid reflux disease, he or she will recommend the most appropriate treatment for your particular case. It may be simply changing your diet, or it may involve over-the-counter or prescription medications. Take care to follow your doctor’s instructions exactly, even after you feel relief from your symptoms. After the initial relief of symptoms, acid reflux treatment focuses on prevention, so always consult with your doctor before making any changes to the regimen that has been recommended for you.