So it's nice for many of us to be able to move one worry -- and a pretty big one, at that -- toward the bottom of the list. New research out of the University of Michigan shows that, contrary to what's been believed, GERD is not strongly linked to the development of esophageal cancer, at least not for many of the millions of Americans who suffer from the ailment. A study published last week in the American Journal of Gastroenterology estimates that, among white non-Hispanic Americans, women with GERD symptoms very rarely go on to develop cancer of the esophagus. Same goes for men under age 50, who are at far greater risk of getting colon cancer than esophageal cancer. Men over age 60, though, are at much greater risk, but the risk of colorectal cancer still is much higher. GERD involves the rise of stomach acid and juices into the esophagus; it occurs when the lower esophageal sphincter is too weak to seal the stomach off from the esophagus. The prolonged exposure to stomach acid irritates the lining of the esophagus, causing symptoms that range from heartburn and a bitter taste in the mouth to a dull chest pain that can mimic the feeling associated with heart attack. While most people have occasional heartburn, those who experience it twice a week or more frequently are said to have GERD.
why not find out more http://voices.washingtonpost.com/checkup/2010/12/gerd_and_esophageal_cancer_no.html
Esophageal Cancer: Writer Christopher Hitchens Dies From Pneumonia Complication -- What Is Esophageal Cancer?
According to Everyday Health, pneumonia can be a complication of esophageal cancer "because a tumor is blocking the esophagus and forcing food and liquid down the windpipe," thereby leading to aspiration pneumonia, which is lung infection due to breathing in of a foreign substance. Esophageal cancer is more common in men than in women, and is less prevalent in the United States than in other parts of the world, like in some Asian and African countries, according to the Mayo Clinic. While rare, esophageal cancer is also dedly. So far this year, there have been 16,980 new cases of esophageal cancer in the united States, and 14,710 deaths from the cancer, according to the National Cancer Institute. The cancer is often not curable , the A.D.A.M. medical encyclopedia reported. There are two main types of esophageal cancer : squamous cell carcinoma, which is cancer that starts in the flat cells that line the esophagus and is linked with smoking and alcohol; and adenocarcinoma of the esophagus, which starts in cells that create and release mucus and other bodily fluid, according to the Mayo Clinic. Adenocarcinoma of the esophagus is the most common kind of esophageal cancer in the U.S., and most often affects white men, according to the Mayo Clinic. Squamous cell carcinoma, on the other hand, is the most prevalent esophageal cancer around the world.