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Esophagitis involves inflammation of the esophagus that triggers symptoms such as difficulty swallowing, hoarseness and heartburn. The condition is typically caused by acid reflux which is the upward flow of digestive fluids from the stomach to the esophagus.

What are the indications?

The indications of esophagitis arise due to irritation or infection of the esophagus and tends to vary in intensity from one individual to another and includes the following:

  • Hoarse voice
  • Burning sensation in the chest or throat
  • Difficulty swallowing
    The indications of esophagitis arise due to irritation or infection of the esophagus and tends to vary in intensity from one individual to another.

What are the causes?

Aside from acid reflux, esophagitis can be caused by alcohol or tobacco use, obesity, frequent episodes of vomiting and hiatal hernia. Various types of infection including candida and herpes virus infections can lead to esophagitis.

Risk factors

Various factors increase the risk for developing esophagitis. Remember that not all individual with the risk factors can end up with the condition. The common risk factors include the following:

  • Obesity
  • Alcohol abuse
  • Smoking
  • Diabetes
  • Continuous vomiting
  • Hiatal hernia
  • Sleep posture
  • Weakened immune system
  • Using pills such as vitamin C, tetracycline, doxycycline or alendronate without enough water


The treatment for esophagitis depends on the underlying cause but medications particularly proton pump inhibitors and histamine H2-receptor antagonists are vital components of treatment.

In case the condition is triggered by a fungal or viral infection, the doctor usually prescribes antiviral or antifungal medications.

Lifestyle alterations that must be observed include the following:

  • Avoid spicy foods
  • Cessation of smoking
  • Raising the position of the head while sleeping
  • Using loose-fitting garments

In addition, reducing the intake of caffeine, alcohol, peppermint, fatty foods and chocolate can significantly improve the symptoms.

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