NVFP Presents: “Oh My GERD! Signs, Symptoms, and Treatments for GERD”

Do you suffer from frequent acid reflux or heartburn? Join us as Dr. Ken Zweig and Dr. Timothy Dougherty from Digestive Disease Physicians have a conversation about the signs, symptoms, and treatments for Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD).

Event Highlights:

  • 0:16 – 2:01 – Dr. Ken Zweig begins the town hall event with a few housekeeping items, such as there will not be a town hall event in December, and NVFP is now on Instagram (@nvfpractice). Dr. Zweig then introduces NVFP’s newest provider, Dr. Elizabeth Cilenti.
  • 2:38 – 3:43 – Dr. Elizabeth Cilenti addresses attendees and provides a brief introduction about herself. Dr. Cilenti is accepting new patients! Click here to learn more.
  • 3:50 – 5:16 – Dr. Zweig introduces his featured guest, Dr. Timothy Dougherty with Digestive Disease Physicians, as well as provides a brief introduction to attendees.
  • 5:30 – 7:45 – Dr. Dougherty begins his presentation by sharing what the “cardinal symptoms” of Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD), such as heartburn and regurgitation. He then explains the differences between heartburn and regurgitation.
  • 8:00 – 10:10 – “It’s important to make the distinction between heartburn, the symptom, and GERD, the disease because from time to time and after Thanksgiving dinner is a great opportunity for it. And if you have it occasionally, and it doesn’t make you so uncomfortable and interfere with things, then that’s not really a disease. That’s just the symptom.”
  • 10:30 – 14:20 – Dr. Dougherty explains the acid environment in our stomachs – “And if you happen to have enough gastric contents and acidic gastric contents, then you’ll have the opportunity for some of that gastric juice, which is quite acidic. The pH in your stomach is around two whereas neutral is seven.”
  • 14:25 – 20:31 – There are multiple over-the-counter medications that are available to treat frequent heartburn. Dr. Dougherty shares multiple examples of medications and the differences between them.
  • 20:39 – 26:20 – “Some other treatments are the diet and lifestyle aspects. We’ve all been joking about the upcoming holiday feasts and their impact on GERD, but we do have a lot of aspects of Thanksgiving dinner that can cause people to have more reflux symptoms.” Dr. Dougherty discusses the many diet and lifestyle changes that we can make that can help provide relief.
  • 26:30 – 33:16 – For some patients, medication is not enough – Dr. Dougherty explains the different surgeries that are performed in more advanced cases.
  • 33:20 – 35:32 – “Once you’ve blocked those acid pumps for a while, your stomach essentially knows that there’s not as much acid as normal. And you will make new acid pumps and more of them and you’ll take some more pantoprazole the next day and block those two. And eventually, you may decide I’m not having any reflux anymore, so I’m going to stop taking the pantoprazole cold Turkey. And now you have all those extra acid pumps and they become unblocked as the pantoprazole work wears off.”
  • 35:40 – 43:55 – Dr. Dougherty discusses Esophageal Cancer, Barrett’s Esophagus, and how GERD is a risk factor for both diseases.
  • 44:27 – 46:48 – Dr. Dougherty concludes his presentation and opens the floor for Q&A.

Contact Information for our Speakers:

Dr. Timothy Dougherty:


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