Dr. John Chovan
Pediatric, GERD, gastroesophageal reflux, gastroesophageal reflux disease
Medicine and Health Sciences | Nursing
Gastroesophageal reflux is the return of stomach contents into the esophagus. It is normal in the newborn due to an immature gastroesophageal sphincter. Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) is a common condition found in 3.3% of the pediatric population that occurs when the physiological barrier of the esophageal sphincter opens during a transient lower esophageal sphincter relaxation (TLESR)period (Rinsma et al., 2016) resulting in complications like mucosal erosion, bleeding, dysphagia or failure to thrive (Quitadamo, Ummarino, Saiano, 2015). GERD in children can be directly related to late maturation of the gastroesophageal (GE) sphincter or an impaired hormonal or neurotransmitter response. A high pressure gradient surrounding the GE sphincter aides in maintaining forward flow of food and stomach content. When either the position of the sphincter or the thick mucosal lining of the GE sphincter are affected, GERD is likely to occur. Recurrent reflux results in inflammation of the esophageal epithelium or esophagitis. It has also been linked to reactive airway disease and otitis media with effusion (Gorecka- Tutega, Jastrzebska, Skladzien, Fyderek, 2016).
Prusinski, Regina F., "Pediatric Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease" (2016). Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) Student Scholarship. Paper 199.