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You are here : 3-RX.com > Medical Encyclopedia > Diseases and Conditions > Esophagitis: Prevention & Expectations
      Category : Health Centers > Digestive System


Esophagitis | Symptoms & Signs | Diagnosis & Tests | Prevention & Expectations | Treatment & Monitoring

What can be done to prevent the disease?

Maintaining a healthy weight, avoiding smoking, and limiting alcohol intake may decrease the risk of esophagitis. Other ways to decrease the risk include:

  • eating a nutritious diet based on the food guide pyramid
  • getting adequate rest
  • practicing safer sex
  • getting proper treatment for GERD
  • Esophagitis caused by toxic substances can be avoided by:

  • storing chemicals in properly labeled containers and keeping them out of the reach of children
  • always taking pills with adequate amounts of liquid and at least 15 minutes before lying down
  • Prevention of esophagitis is not always possible.

    What are the long-term effects of the disease?

    If the cause of the esophagitis is an infection, and the infection is treated, the inflammation may improve. If a toxic chemical, such as lye, bleach, or gasoline is ingested, the esophagus can perforate, or rupture. This esophageal perforation can be fatal.

    Conditions such as GERD can irritate and narrow the esophagus. Chronic GERD can result in Barrett's esophagus. In Barrett's esophagus, the lining of the esophagus is so badly damaged that a new lining is formed. The changes in the cells lining the esophagus pose an increased risk for esophageal cancer.

    What are the risks to others?

    Esophagitis itself is not contagious and poses no risk to others. If the cause is an infection, such as herpes simplex, the infection may be contagious.

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    Esophagitis: Diagnosis & Tests


    Esophagitis: Treatment & Monitoring

    Author: David J. Craner, MD
    Reviewer: Eileen McLaughlin, RN, BSN
    Date Reviewed: 07/05/01

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