Persistent heartburn (acid reflux) occurring more than twice a week is defined as the disorder gastro-oseophageal reflux disease (GERD), according to the U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIH). GERD can cause more serious conditions, including inflammation of the oesophagus (the tube connecting the throat with the stomach) or development of an ulcer in the oesophagus.
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The most common symptom of peptic ulcers, which includes esophageal ulcers, is dull or burning pain. The pain is usually located near the breastbone, and sometimes extends to the upper chest, neck, throat, and face.
Swallowing and Breathing Difficulty
Scars from tissue damage caused by an ulcer can narrow the oesophagus and cause problems with swallowing, particularly when eating solid foods. The person may feel like she has a lump in her throat. She also may develop wheezing and shortness of breath.
An ulcer in the oesophagus may cause bleeding. This usually is slight, but can become extreme. When the blood passes through the digestive tract, it results in dark, tarry stools or stools that look bloody. If the patient vomits, it may be bloody or look like coffee grounds.
Other signs of an ulcer in the oesophagus include a sore throat, hoarseness, excessive salivation, and sinus inflammation.
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