Esophageal Cancer: A Major Risk of Acid Reflux | The ENT Institute

Esophageal Cancer: A Major Risk of Acid Reflux

It’s fairly common for everyone to experience acid reflux from time to time – whether it’s because we ate something spicy or too greasy. In other cases, people are diagnosed with GERD, also known as gastroesophageal reflux disease. In these extreme cases, acid reflux causes esophageal cancer. 

It may not sound like a common occurrence or cancer that people deal with, but believe it or not, esophageal cancer stands as one of the most frequent killers in the world (Mayo Clinic). It’s also recently made the news: 

What are the signs and symptoms of esophageal cancer? 

  • Choking on food
  • Heartburn
  • Pain in the chest, often described as pressure or burning
  • Difficulty swallowing 

How is esophageal cancer diagnosed?

If you’ve been diagnosed with GERD or know that you have bad acid reflux, the next step is to schedule an appointment for a transnasal esophagoscopy – a minimally invasive procedure where the doctor feeds a camera attached to a tube down the throat – allowing the doctor to examine the esophagus. 

How curable is esophageal cancer? 

According to the National Cancer Institute, “In most cases, esophageal cancer is a treatable disease, but it is rarely curable. The overall 5-year survival rate in patients amenable to definitive treatment ranges from 5% to 30%. The occasional patient with very early disease has a better chance of survival.” (NCI, 2020). 

Always consider that acid reflux causes esophageal cancer. With that in mind, it’s best not to take risks. Why not come in to get looked at? To schedule a same-day appointment, fill out the form at the top of the page or call 770-740-1860. For more information on what else the ENT Institute provides, fill out the form to the right. 


Mayo Clinic. Esophageal Cancer [Medical Journal] Retrieved February 2, 2020 from

PDQ® Adult Treatment Editorial Board. PDQ Esophageal Cancer Treatment (Adult). Bethesda, MD: National Cancer Institute. Updated 01/22/2020. Available at: Accessed 02/03/2020. [PMID: 26389338]

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