The retrograde flow of gastric contents into the larynx, oropharynx and/or the nasopharynx, which irritates the respiratory and digestive tracts, and contributes to disease.
Currently, there is no cure or effective medical treatment for LPR.
Here are testimonials from two patients dealing with LPR.
“I know that there are other diseases that are far worse. That being said, I find LPR/GERD has decimated my quality of life. Also discouraging: existing medications a) are extremely difficult to discontinue and/or b) can cause serious side effects. I have to squeeze in buying and cooking my own foods in addition to my families', all while working FT. I have become afraid of eating, knowing I'll have some degree of symptoms. Some days symptoms are somewhat manageable; other days they're awful. I am also very sad to think I probably will never again be able to eat or drink so many things, and not just the obvious triggers. Doing anything celebratory, or traveling, or eating out, they are now sources of angst instead of pleasure. Finally, the lack of knowledge and support amongst family & friends, and yes, the medical community, that has made living with this condition that much harder. To put this in perspective, I have had cancer and had to have a mastectomy; for me, LPR/GERD has been worse.”
"My name is Daniella and I am only 24 years old and it has been 6 years since I have been suffering and diagnosed with LPR reflux. It has taken a lot from me and needless to say, it has gotten worse over time. My symptoms include excessive throat clearing, overproduction of phlegm, feeling of lump in my throat, bad breath all the time and sinus infections. Never did I smoke, drink alcohol, coffee, soda or overeat on junk food before being diagnosed. I even tried listening to my doctor with eliminating food, taking a PPI (which is not meant to be taken long term), wedge on the bed, not eating before bed but nothing has helped me, and I still feel hopeless. It makes stuff I like, such as exercising impossible, since I feel like I'm drowning in my symptoms all the time. I am really hoping that this clinical trial cures me or at least lessens my symptoms so I can enjoy my life and not let it go to waste."
LPR causes inflammation of the airway. It can present as one or more of the symptoms described below and can progress if not treated.
Hoarseness and discomfort when speaking are typical symptoms of LPR.
Multiple experts are convinced that reflux is the reason why the incidence of asthma has increased in recent years.
The constant irritation and inflammation of the mucous membranes leading to increased secretion of mucus.
Constant irritation and excess mucous can lead to frequent throat clearing.
All the excess mucus would block our breathing if we couldn’t clear our airways by coughing. Inflammation of the airway from reflux can also cause non-productive cough
Inflammation of your sinuses or nasal cavities increases mucus production, which will drip down the back of your throat, or cause the sensation that something is dripping down your throat.
Some of those affected with LPR report that they feel like they have a lump in their throat or a feeling of tightness. It might feel like something is stuck there.
The valve in your throat needs to relax when you swallow and get tight again afterward. If the valve is inflamed and tense from LPR, swallowing becomes difficult.
Many patients with LPR experience frequent belching.
The so-called eustachian tube connects our ears to the airways. Reflux can travel through that tube, cause inflammation and contribute to ear disease.
If you already have an issue with your airway, such as allergy or asthma, your airway is already irritated and potentially more susceptible to inflammation and disease by LPR. If pollen allergy, asthma, or similar conditions are already present, then the airways are already weakened. They are even more prone to irritation and inflammation.
The above symptoms are just the common ones, there are many more. LPR can cause inflammation in all of your airway. If you have any of these symptoms, it is important that you get evaluated for LPR so that your symptoms don’t go undiagnosed or be misdiagnosed as something else.
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