Principles of Treatment of Indigestion

Some general principles of treatment of indigestion should be followed. For example if the cause (e.g. GERD, lactase deficiency, biliary colic etc.) of indigestion can be identified, the therapy should be directed towards the cause of indigestion. If the cause can not be identified, than treatment should be directed towards symptomatic relief of the patient for improving patients’ health.

General principle of treatment of indigestion:

For mild indigestion, reassurance may be the only intervention needed, (especially mentioning the patient of indigestion that a careful evaluation revealed no serious organic disease). Medicines that can cause acid reflux or dyspepsia should be avoided and stopped (if already using) if possible. Patients with GERD (gastro-esophageal reflux disease) should limit alcohol, caffeine, chocolate, and tobacco use because of the effects of these substances on the LES (lower esophageal sphincter) is usually relaxing, which causes easy acid reflux to esophagus. Other measures like consumption of a low-fat diet, avoiding snacks before bedtime, and elevating the head of the bed should be taken as general measure.

Specific therapies for organic disease (if present) should be offered when possible and if the disease can be identified. Examples of specific therapies are surgery, which is appropriate in disorders like biliary colic, while diet changes are indicated for lactase deficiency or celiac disease. Some illnesses such as peptic ulcer disease may be cured by specific medical regimens. However, as most indigestion is caused by GERD or functional dyspepsia, medications that reduce gastric acid, stimulate motility, or blunt gastric sensitivity are indicated.

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