When we eat food, it goes to the stomach, but it first has to go through the esophagus. As it travels down that tract, it has to move through a door between the esophagus and the stomach. This door opens and closes as we swallow. It is a valve that is called the lower esophageal sphincter (LES). This door or valve is regulated by the diaphragm. Once the food is inside the stomach, certain acids are released to digest it. The stomach is lined with special tissues that protect it from the acid. The esophagus tissues, on the other hand, are smooth like a tile.
Sometimes the acid flows out of the stomach when the valve opens and closes, and after some time the tissues in the esophagus get damaged. This can also happen if the valve malfunctions as a result of a loose diaphragm, which leads the valve to be open all the time. This condition is called Hiatus. Over time, with constant contact with the acid, the esophagus gets damaged leading to problems like heartburn, pyrosis, acid indigestion or acid reflux.
In some cases, it is slightly open while in others it is completely open. When the gap becomes larger, part of the stomach may bulge through the esophagus; this condition is called Hiatal Hernia. At this point, the diaphragm no longer controls the valve, and it stays open casing Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease or GERD.
A Gastroenterologist is a medical practitioner that deals with problems in our digestive organs, i.e., stomach, intestines, colon, liver, and gallbladder. They identify and help heal problems like abdominal pain, ulcers, diarrhea, cancer, and jaundice. They also consultwith abdominal surgeons when operations are required.
You can choose the best Dallas Abdominal Surgeons by looking around and asking for referrals but first look for ones that are a part of your health plan. Ask around about what doctors your friends and family visit and how their experiences have been. See if they fit your needs and if their expertise is what you are looking for. You can also go and visit the doctor and get a feel for their environment. See if you are comfortable with their process. Also, notice how they are treating other patients. Pay attention to the staff’s demeanor, how they answer the phone, what is their schedule policy and how efficient and friendly they are.
It is very important to find the right doctor whenever you need to go for a checkup. Sometimes it is not about their expertise but about the way they run their practice. It is always a good idea to learn all of these things ahead of time so you can have a comfortable experience. Not choosing a doctor you feel comfortable with can lead to numerous problems in the future.