Gastroesophageal reflux symptoms are relatively common, seen in almost two-thirds of people in the United States. Gastroesophageal reflux disease, or GERD, is the presence of esophageal damage accompanying reflux symptoms. Typical symptoms include heartburn and regurgitation. Atypical symptoms include chronic sore throat, cough, hoarseness, laryngitis, asthma, dysphagia, excessive salivation, globus, and dental erosions. GERD can be characterized as erosive or nonerosive esophagitis based upon the presence or absence of mucosal breaks seen on endoscopy. Erosive esophagitis is more likely to lead to complications including stricture, ulcers, and metaplasia, Barrett’s esophagus, and adenocarcinoma in the distal esophagus, as a result of full-thickness mucosal injury.
Solcia E, Villani L, Luinetti O, Trespi E, Strada E, Tinelli C, Fiocca R. Altered intercellular glycoconjugates and dilated intercellular spaces of esophageal epithelium in reflux disease. Virchows Arch. 2000;436(3):207–16.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Tobey NA, Hosseini SS, Argote CM, Dobrucali AM, Awayda MS, Orlando RC. Dilated intercellular spaces and shunt permeability in nonerosive acid-damaged esophageal epithelium. Am J Gastroenterol. 2004;99(1):13–22.CrossRefGoogle Scholar