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MINERVA GASTROENTEROLOGICA E DIETOLOGICA
A Journal on Gastroenterology, Nutrition and Dietetics
Indexed/Abstracted in: CAB, EMBASE, PubMed/MEDLINE, Scopus, Emerging Sources Citation Index
FOCUS ON GASTRO-OESOPHAGEAL REFLUX DISEASE
Minerva Gastroenterologica e Dietologica 2003 December;49(4):261-76
Diagnostic approach to gastro-oesophageal reflux disease
Joseph S. T., Pandolfino J. E.
It is neither practical nor necessary to embark on a diagnostic evaluation of every patient with classic symptoms of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). In most cases a well-taken history is usually sufficient to confirm the diagnosis of GERD and begin therapy. However, some patients may present with atypical symptoms; and many with classic symptoms are refractory to standard medical therapy. In these cases one must rely on diagnostic studies to confirm that abnormal acid reflux is present and potentially responsible for the symptoms in question. Modern technology has given us many different modalities to quantify eso-phageal acid exposure and determine whether symptoms are correlated to reflux events. Unfortunately, these studies are not perfect and the work-up of refractory patients typically requires more than one test. The goal of the following review will be to summarize the currently available techniques for diagnosis of GERD and also discuss the possible impact of new techniques, such as intraluminal impedance monitoring and wireless ambulatory pH monitoring.