Advancing the Science

Mayo Clinic Medical Science Blog – an eclectic collection of research- and research education-related stories: feature stories, mini news bites, learning opportunities, profiles and more from Mayo Clinic.

October 31, 2013

New Heartburn Study in at Mayo Clinic

By Advancing the Science contributor

It's a common ailment, but we're trying to get to the bottom of it. Researchers at Mayo Clinic in Florida have launched a clinical trial on gastroesophageal reflux. You either need to have the condition or to be perfectly healthy, as they need people for a control group for the study.

The Gastroesophageal Reflux - Respiratory Consequence Study

To be eligible, participants must be 18-60 years old and be within traveling distance of Mayo Clinic’s campus in Jacksonville, Fla.

Researchers at Mayo Clinic’s campus in Jacksonville, Fla., in collaboration with researchers at the University of Manchester, U.K., are studying how reflux of stomach contents into the esophagus (gullet) may lead to symptoms of cough and wheeze. To do this, researchers will be recruiting 24 people with GERD (i.e. heartburn) and 12 healthy volunteers, aged 18 to 60 years from the Jacksonville area, to help with their research program.  Volunteers must be non-smokers, low alcohol consumers and not have asthma or lung disease.

Gastro-esophageal reflux disease (GERD) is very common affecting about a third of the global population. Not only does it lead to the classical symptoms of heartburn and regurgitation, but is thought in some people to lead to symptoms of the respiratory tract, such as coughing, wheezing and breathlessness. These respiratory symptoms can be expressed as conditions such as “chronic cough” and “asthma”, both of which have a high socioeconomic impact, significant effect on quality of life and impose a considerable burden on health services. Despite GERD being considered a major contributing factor to these respiratory disorders, treatment with acid suppression medications is far from satisfactory. Thus there is an urgent need to better understand how reflux leads to cough and wheeze. Better understanding of these mechanisms will allow more successful treatment of these common and troublesome conditions.

This project is funded by the Mayo Clinic.  For more details, please call 904-953-2854.

Tags: clinical trials, Innovations, People

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