2nd Opinion Consult for all Gastrointestinal Disorders
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Gluten & GERD - Can the gluten-free diet cure reflux? Find out in Gluten Free & More magazine's Oct/Nov 2015 issue with Dr. Rudert as interviewed by Christine Boyd, Health Editor
October 17, 2015
Several years ago, Atlanta-based gastroenterologist Cynthia Rudert, MD, treated a 26-year-old woman with gastroesophageal reflux disease or GERD. Rudert says it’s not unusual to see patients with GI complaints who have been taking acid suppression medications for more than ten years. No one’s thought to address whether there’s an underlying cause of their GERD, she says.
(Excerpt from Gluten Free & More Oct / Nov 2015 issue with Dr. Rudert by Christine Boyd, Health Editor, more below.)
"Her case was really severe," says Rudert. "She had been on very high doses of acid-blocking medications and had even undergone drastic surgery where the top of her stomach had been wrapped around the bottom of her esophagus to tighten it so the acid wouldn't reflux up."
Continuing to have symptoms, the young woman came to Rudert because of gas, bloating and recurrent reflux. Rudert tested her for celiac disease and the results were postive.
"Her reflux cleared completely on the gluten-free diet. I suspect she never needed the surgery," Rudert says.
GERD is a common disorder with a whopping 20 percent of Americans estimated to have it. Although most of these don't have celiac disease, Rudert observes that GERD can stem from undiagnosed celiac disease and non-celiac gluten sensitivity.
"I've seen countless individuals who have a total resolution of their reflux once they go gluten-free," she says. "Others on acid suppression medications are able to taper off and eventually discontinue the medicines."
Rudert says it's not unusual to see patients with GI complaints who have been taking acid suppression medications for more than ten years. No one's thought to address whether there's an underlying cause of their GERD, she says.
How Does Celiac Trigger GERD?
GERD is on the lengthy list of symptoms that can be caused by undiagnosed celiac disease. But only a handful of studies have homed in on the celiac-GERD link.
Read more about the possible link between GERD and celiac, plus the story of a professional opera singer with GERD and how she solved the problem here in Gluten Free & More's Oct / Nov 2015 issue.