Alphabet Soup of RefluxAlphabet Soup of Reflux

Warning: Acronyms are prevalent in gastro- esophageal reflux disease

Here are a few you need to know:






American College of Gastroenterology

The ACG provides its members with the most accurate and up-to-date scientific information on digestive health and the etiology, symptomatology and treatment of GI disorders.


American Gastroenterological Association

Organization of physicians, researchers and educators whose primary practice or research involves the functions and disorders of the digestive system. It has grown to include more than 16,000 members from around the globe who are involved in all aspects of the science, practice and advancement of gastroenterology


Anti-Reflux Barrier

Composed of well-defined structuresthat work synergistically to keep stomach contents out of the esophagus (even when you are upside down). The components of the ARB are: a) GEV, b) LES, c) crura of the diaphragm, which “pinch” the distal esophagus aiding in closing the esophagus, d) intra-abdominal length of the esophagus which is exposed to positive intra-abdominal pressure, e) esophageal peristalsis / motility and clearance, f) abdomino-thoracic pressure difference.


American Society of Gastrointestinal Endoscopy

The ASGS seeks to serve as a knowledgeable and respected advocate for General Surgeon specialists, and also seeks to enhance General Surgery as a specialty.


Body Mass Index

A simple and widely used method for estimating body fat. In epidemiology BMI alone is used as an indicator of prevalence and incidence. Metric: BMI = kg / m2. US/Customary: BMI = lb * 703 / in2Link to calculator


Digestive Disease Week

The largest international gathering of physicians, researchers and academics in the fields of gastroenterology, hepatology, endoscopy and gastrointestinal surgery. Jointly sponsored by the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases (AASLD), the American Gastroenterological Association (AGA) Institute, the American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy (ASGE) and the Society for Surgery of the Alimentary Tract (SSAT). The meeting showcases more than 5,000 abstracts and hundreds of lectures on the latest advances in GI research, medicine and technology.


DeMeester Score

Uses parameters such as total reflux and number of episodes to numerically measure esophageal acidity and assess the severity of gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). It is most commonly used to document the severity of GERD, with a score >14.72 representing reflux considered significant.


esophageal acid exposure

EAE, if abnormal, is used to objectively document GERD. Abnormal EAE is often determined by either 48-h wireless pH BRAVO or 24-h ambulatory pH testing while off PPI therapy for at least seven days. If determined by the 24-h test, the normal value is usually considered to be <4.5% (% total time pH <4). If determined by 48-h pH BRAVO, the normal value is ≤ 5.3% (% total time pH < 4).


esophageal adenocarcinoma

High grade dysplasia in the esophagus a serious complication of Barrett’s and has been the most rapidly rising form of cancer in the United States since the mid-1970’s.


Esophageal Cancer Action Network

Its mission is to save lives by increasing awareness about the link between Heartburn and Cancer, promoting early detection and supporting medical innovation to prevent, detect and treat Esophageal Cancer. 



Involves insertion of an endoscope through the mouth and throat into the esophagus and stomach (often while the patient is sedated) in order to assess the internal surfaces of the esophagus, stomach, and duodenum.


Esophagogastric Junction (also called cardia)

Anatomical term for the junction orifice of the stomach and the esophagus. At this level, the mucosa of the esophagus transitions into gastric mucosa.


Endo Luminal Fundoplication

The first technical description and preliminary version of the TIF procedure


Ear, Nose Throat

A type of surgeon in the field of otolaryngology, the study of diseases in the ear canals and upper airway. Some atypical GERD symptoms that ENTs sometimes see first are hoarseness, throat clearing, cough, sore throat, dysphagia, or globus.


Functional Lumen Imaging Probe

Created by McMahon et al to measure cross-sectional sectional areas of the esophagus at extremely small intervals.


Gastroesophageal Junction

see EGJ


Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease

A chronic condition in which acid from the stomach flows back into the lower esophagus, causing pain or tissue damage; also known as acid reflux.


Gastrointestinal Symptom Rating Scale

Scale used to diagnose the severity of gastrointestinal symptoms and to determine treatment for patients suffering from such symptoms. The GSRS contains five scales: reflux syndrome, abdominal pain, constipation syndrome, diarrhea syndrome and indigestion syndrome.


Gastroesophageal Reflux Symptom Score

Assess heartburn, regurgitation, bloating, and dysphagia and epigastric/retrosternal pain (Anvari 2006). The total scale ranges from 0 to 60 where a “well-controlled” score is defined as < 18.


Gastroesophageal Valve

The 3 - 4 cm musculo-mucosal fold created through the oblique Angle of His at which the esophagus enters the stomach. This flap valve opens only for swallowing and closes promptly. When competent and fully intact, prevents the reflux of gastric contents up into the esophagus.




a type of physician practicing in the field of gastroenterology,the study of the digestive system and digestive diseases

H2 blocker

also called H2RA

Histamine type-2 receptor antagonist (stomach acid)

Drugs that prevent or block the production of gastric acid. A pump in the stomach releases hydrochloric acid when stimulated by histamine. H2 blockers prevent histamine from stimulating this pump, thereby reducing the amount of acid that is released into the stomach. H2 blockers are available over-the-counter (OTC) or by prescription [e.g. Cimetidine (Tagamet), Famotidine (Pepcid), Ranitidine (Zantac)].


Hiatal Hernia

Protrusion (or herniation) of the upper part of the stomach into the thorax through a tear or weakness in the diaphragm.


High Pressure Zone

Detected manometrically—is the lower end of the esophagus does not have a true anatomic sphincter.


High Resolution Manometry

Gastrointestinal motility diagnostic system that measures intraluminal pressure activity in the gastrointestinal tract using a series of closely spaced pressure sensors.


Health Related Quality of Life

Validated survey to quantify the subjectivity of patient symptoms to identify GERD.

LA Grade

Los Angeles Grade

scale used to classify severity of esophagitis (inflammation of the esophagus)


Lower Esophageal Sphincter

A ring of smooth muscle fibers at the junction of the esophagus and stomach; also called cardiac sphincter, gastroesophageal sphincter.


Laparoscopic Fundoplication

Procedure that involves wrapping the fundus 360° around the surgically mobilized distal esophagus using a less invasive approach.


Laryngopharyngeal Esophageal Reflux Disease

Proximal gastroesophageal reflux affecting the upper esophagus and airway with concomitant ENT symptoms or signs such as hoarseness, throat clearing, cough, sore throat, dysphagia, or globus.


Laryngopharyngeal Reflux Proximal

see LERD


Multi-Channel Intraluminal Impedance

High resolution manometry—may be combined with manometry or pH studies to examine patient symptoms to a higher degree of specificity. MII-pH augments current esophageal pH monitoring by detecting non-acid reflux and weakly acidic reflux (pH exposure ≥ 4) in patients with atypical symptoms or in patients who continue to experience typical symptoms despite use of medical therapy.


Non-Erosive Reflux Disease

One of many types of GERD characterized as reflux disease without esophagitis, i.e. without the slow erosion of the lining of the esophagus.


 A 0-14 scale measuring acidity (0) to neutral (7) to alkalinity (14) and for GERD patients, used in determining the level of stomach acidity and percentage of time the esophagus is exposed to stomach acid.


pH manometry

see MMI


Proton Pump Inhibitors

Drugs that reduce the production of acid by blocking the enzyme in the wall of the stomach that produces acid. The reduction of acid prevents ulcers and allows any ulcers that exist in the esophagus, stomach and duodenum to heal. Examples: Omeprazole (Prilosec), Iansoprazole (Prevacid), Esomeprazole (Nexium).


Reflux Disease Questionnaire

Validated survey to quantify the subjectivity of patient atypical symptoms to identify GERD.


Randomized EsophyX vs. Sham / Placebo Controlled TIF Trial

As defined by the Montreal consensus definition while on PPIs compared with sham and placebo controls.: The objective of the study is to evaluate the relative merits, safety and effectiveness of the EsophyX transoral device in performing an advanced TIF procedure in patients with "troublesome symptoms"


Reflux Finding Score

Validated survey to quantify the subjectivity of patient symptoms to identify GERD.


Reflux Symptom Index

Validated survey to quantify the subjectivity of patient atypical symptoms to identify GERD.


Society of American Gastrointestinal and Endoscopic Surgeons

Organization represents a worldwide community of surgeons that can bring minimal access surgery, endoscopy and emerging techniques to patients in every country. Representing over 6,500 surgeons and allied health professionals.


TIF® versus Medical PPI Management of Refractory GERD symptoms trial

First level one data for the TIF procedure, abstract presented at DDW 2013.


Transoral Incisionless Fundoplication

Minimally invasive (no cutting) procedure that reconstructs the GEV from inside the stomach by forming a ~270 degree wrap using the EsophyX® device under direct visualization by an endoscope.


Upper Esophageal Sphincter

Natural resistance area located in cervical esophagus consisting of cricopharyngeus and inferior pharyngeal constrictor muscles.


Upper Gastrointestinal series

A radiologic examination of the upper gastrointestinal tract.


Zigzag line

The squamocolumnar junction where the lining changes from white esophageal (squamous) tissue to red gastric (columnar) tissue. The line is irregular hence the name Z (zigzag) line. The lower esophageal sphincter is located in this area. (Ok not an acronym but cool info just the same.)

For more information on the TIF procedure, view this site:

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