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Heartburn & Reflux

Minnesota Heartburn & Reflux Center

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Reflux & Heartburn Solutions

The Minnesota Reflux and Heartburn Center offers comprehensive testing and therapies for patients with gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), heartburn, and related symptoms. Our team of specialists provides streamlined access to advanced GERD treatments, aiming for clinical excellence and high patient satisfaction.

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Patient-Centered Care

Patients receive education and actively participate in treatment decisions, with no long waits between appointments. Our specialists collaborate closely, ensuring unified care and a designated expert contact for each patient.

Appointments are available at Cuyuna Regional Medical Center’s Crosby and Breezy Point locations. Patients can be referred by their primary care physician or contact our nurse coordinator at 218-546-4323 for more information.

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Reflux & Heartburn Care

Learn about the many solutions for reflux and heartburn.

Evaluation

Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD) presents a variety of symptoms, with each person’s experience being unique. Our initial evaluation involves reviewing personal and family health history to understand how acid reflux impacts your quality of life. We provide detailed information on esophagus and stomach anatomy, comparing normal function with the effects of lower esophageal sphincter (LES) failure and resulting symptoms.

We ensure clear, thorough explanations of diagnostic testing, helping you understand the purpose of each procedure and how the results will guide your treatment plan.

Standard diagnostic assessments include endoscopy, ambulatory pH monitoring, biopsy, and manometry. Additional testing may be recommended based on your specific history and symptoms.

Following the diagnostic exams, you will have a comprehensive consultation with a GERD specialist to discuss the results and explore treatment options. Our team is committed to providing you with the information and support needed to make informed decisions about your care.

Diagnostics

Heartburn and Reflux Diagnostics:

Esophogastrodoudenoscopy (EGD) allows the reflux specialist to visually examine the esophagus, stomach, and the first portion of the small intestine using a thin, flexible tube with a camera.

Optical Biopsy uses a high-powered fiber optic microscope during upper endoscopy to view esophageal and stomach tissue at a cellular level, aiding in the detection of precancerous changes.

Tissue Biopsy involves collecting tiny tissue samples from the esophagus during upper endoscopy for further examination under a microscope to detect precancerous cells.

Ambulatory pH Monitoring evaluates acid patterns over 48 hours by attaching a transmitter capsule to the esophagus lining, providing detailed acid reflux occurrence graphs. Learn about Bravo® pH Monitoring

Manometry measures muscle movement effectiveness in the esophagus during swallowing, often used alongside ambulatory pH monitoring to assess reflux patterns and damage.

Impedence pH Testing, a 24-hour study, provides similar acid pattern information as ambulatory pH testing and can be an alternative in certain situations.

Oral-Pharyngeal Acid Monitoring assesses non-typical reflux symptoms like cough, hoarseness, or sore throat, focusing on the impact of reflux on the throat, voice box, and sinuses.

Esophagram (Barium Swallow) uses a contrast liquid to observe the path through the esophagus and stomach, evaluating their ability to move food or fluid effectively.

Non-Surgical Solutions

Lifestyle changes can improve GERD symptoms, but most patients also need acid-reducing medications. However, many patients do not find sufficient relief with medications alone. While medications like Proton Pump Inhibitors (PPIs) can help, they may not stop or reduce reflux, leading to potential complications. We offer non-surgical treatment options, including lifestyle modifications and medication management. For patients who do not find relief with these methods, we also provide minimally invasive surgical options.

Surgical Solutions

We provide advanced surgical options for GERD, offering effective, minimally invasive procedures including the LINX Reflux Management System. These options are often chosen when medications fail to relieve symptoms satisfactorily, or due to the inconvenience and cost of daily medication use, desire to stop reflux entirely, or drug side effects.

Laparoscopic Nissen Fundoplication: Considered the gold standard, this procedure wraps part of the stomach around the lower esophagus to restore the damaged valve causing acid reflux. It stops reflux in 80-85% of patients, eliminating the need for medications, with a high satisfaction rate after 8-10 years.

Lower Esophageal Sphincter Augmentation (LINX): This implantable device, a bracelet of titanium magnets, augments the lower esophageal sphincter without compressing the esophagus. In a recent study, 85% of patients were off all PPI medications with no significant side effects, and reflux was stopped in 70% of patients.

Gastric Exclusion and Diversion: For severe GERD with extensive esophagus damage or failed previous anti-reflux procedures, this procedure diverts acid-producing stomach secretions away from the esophagus, benefiting patients with additional health-threatening illnesses.

Our experts can discuss the benefits and risks of each procedure, assist in understanding the options, and help you make an informed decision.

Cellvizio and Tissue Biopsy: Recommended for patients with Barrett’s Esophagus, this technology reduces biopsies by pinpointing areas needing examination, detecting malignant lesions, and evaluating treatment effectiveness.

Radiofrequency Ablation (RFA): This minimally invasive procedure uses electrical energy and heat to destroy precancerous cells associated with Barrett’s esophagus, guided by imaging tests.

Transoral Incisionless Fundoplication (TIF®): A procedure performed through the mouth with an endoscope, it reduces a hiatal hernia and rebuilds the valve between the stomach and esophagus, restoring the natural anatomy to prevent GERD, with reduced pain, recovery time, and no visible scar.

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