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Gastroenterol Clin North Am. 2014 Mar;43(1):121-33. doi: 10.1016/j.gtc.2013.12.001. Epub 2013 Dec 31.

Medical treatments of GERD: the old and new.

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Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Michael E. DeBakey VA Medical Center, Baylor College of Medicine, 2002 Holcombe Boulevard, Houston, TX 77030, USA. Electronic address:


The mainstay of pharmacological therapy for GERD is gastric acid suppression with proton pump inhibitors (PPIs), which are superior to histamine-2 receptor antagonists for healing erosive esophagitis and achieving symptomatic relief. However, up to one-third of patients may not respond to PPI therapy, creating the need for alternative treatments. Potential approaches include transient lower esophageal sphincter relaxation inhibitors, augmentation esophageal defense mechanisms by improving esophageal clearance or enhancing epithelial repair, and modulation of sensory pathways responsible for GERD symptoms. This review discusses the effectiveness of acid suppression and the data on alternative pharmacological approaches for the treatment of GERD.


Esophageal mucosal repair; Gastroesophageal reflux; Prokinetics; Proton pump inhibitors; Transient lower esophageal sphincter relaxation inhibitors; Visceral analgesia

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