Published online Nov 30, 2009. doi: 10.4240/wjgs.v1.i1.8
Revised: October 24, 2009
Accepted: November 1, 2009
Published online: November 30, 2009
Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) has many protean manifestations. Some of the most vexing have to do with the airway. GERD affects the tracheobronchial tree directly, leading to aspiration pneumonia and asthma, or exacerbating existing pulmonary disease, such as asthma or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. In addition to the respiratory manifestation of GERD, there are unique pharyngeal and laryngeal manifestations. These include voice hoarseness, throat-clearing, chronic cough, globus, and “post-nasal drip”. Linking these symptoms to GERD is challenging and frequently the diagnosis is that of exclusion. Despite proton pump inhibitor therapy being the mainstay of treatment, with anti-reflux surgery being reserved for intractable cases, there is no definitive evidence of the superiority of either.