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Laryngopharyngeal Reflux

Some GERD patients do not have typical reflux symptoms, like heartburn. These patients are considered atypical or silent refluxers. When stomach juices reflux into the esophagus and into the back of the throat, irritation to the vocal cords and lungs can occur.

LPR symptoms include:

  • Chronic Cough
  • Frequent throat clearing
  • Voice hoarseness
  • Globus sensation (the feeling that there is something stuck in the throat)
  • Shortness of breath
  • Adult-onset asthma

Medical treatments that reduce stomach acid usually do not work as effectively for LPR symptoms, because even the smallest amount of acid can lead to symptoms. The diagnosis of LPR can be made with a pH study as well as upper endoscopy. Some patients with LPR may benefit from anti-reflux surgery.

Treating Laryngopharyngeal Reflux at UT Health Austin

Identifying the cause of your symptoms is crucial to developing a treatment plan. Our team of experts may conduct a series of tests including upper endoscopy, barium swallow, pH testing, and esophageal function testing. Once a diagnosis of LPR is made, a treatment plan will be made for you by one of our providers. Treatment plans may include lifestyle changes, medical management, or surgical intervention.

Care Team Approach

We have assembled a team of experts that includes a gastroenterologist, surgeons, associate providers, imaging experts, a dietitian and social workers. This team enables us to provide the right care for the right patient at the right time. For some patients, nonsurgical interventions such as lifestyle modifications and medications can help improve symptoms of reflux, while surgery may be the best course of action for others. Whatever your needs, our team is here to listen and work with you to develop a treatment plan that is right for you.