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Acid Reflux Treatments

What is acid reflux?

One in five Americans suffer from acid reflux, more commonly known as heartburn. A more technical term for reflux is GERD, or Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease. Millions of dollars are spent trying to control symptoms with over-the-counter antacids and prescription medications to control the pain and side effects of GERD.

What most patients don’t understand is that medications only help to treat the symptoms of acid reflux. But they do nothing to treat the actual mechanical problem that is allowing the reflux to occur.

- Dr. Emanuel Nearing, II, FACS, Schneck Surgical Associates

Patients with reflux often suffer from:
  • Poor quality of sleep
  • Reduced work productivity
  • Dietary compromises to avoid reflux symptoms
  • Life-long dependence on medications

How do I know if I have Acid Reflux?

Symptoms for acid reflux vary between individuals, but the most common symptoms are:
  • Heartburn
  • Cough
  • Chest Pain
  • Regurgitation
  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Hoarseness
  • Sore throat
  • Bad breath and dental issues
  • Adult-onset asthma
Talk to your primary care provider about your symptoms and possible solutions to treat reflux, including a referral to Schneck Surgical Associates for advanced treatment.

What causes Acid Reflux?

Acid reflux is caused by a weak lower esophageal sphincter, a valve-like muscle that regulates the passage of food and liquid from the esophagus into the stomach. Medications help neutralize the acid, lessening the pain, but reflux and damage to the esophagus continues.
When patients understand reflux and the damage it causes or do not want to take medications long term, some look for surgical options. Dr. Nearing, of Schneck Surgical Associates, is one of only five surgeons in Indiana and the only surgeon in southern Indiana to offer a new surgical treatment for reflux called the LINX procedure.

The LINX Procedure

About the size of a quarter, the LINX system consists of a small, flexible band of magnets enclosed in titanium beads that act as a barrier to reflux. During a 30- to 60-minute outpatient minimally invasive surgery, or laparoscopic procedure, the surgeon places the bracelet around the base of the esophagus.
LINX expands when food or liquid passes through. After swallowing, the magnetic bond allows the beads to close and prevent gastric juices from refluxing back into the esophagus.


The procedure became the first U.S. Food and Drug Administration-approved, non-medical surgical therapy for acid reflux five years ago.
After undergoing LINX, studies have shown
  • Freedom from medication - 85% of patients were free from dependence on daily reflux medications
  • Freedom from heartburn - 88% of patients reported no more heartburn
  • Freedom from regurgitation - 99% of patients eliminated regurgitation
  • Freedom from bloating - Patients reported significant improvement in gassiness and bloating after treatment
  • Overall improved quality of life - Patients reported significant improvement in their quality of life after treatment

Effectively treating reflux with the LINX procedure can not only improve patients’ quality of life by eliminating symptoms, but it may also help to prevent or stop serious associated conditions, such as adult-onset asthma, chronic cough, and Barrett’s esophagus, a precancerous condition.

- Dr. Emanuel Nearing, II, FACS, Schneck Surgical Associates

For more information about acid reflux treatment options, reach out to Schneck Surgical Associates by calling (812) 519-2388.