Can fibroids cause heartburn? (+1 factors)
In this article, we will discuss whether fibroids may cause heartburn. We will also discuss some other factors which may cause heartburn apart from fibroids. This article will also guide you about some clinical interventions which may help reduce heartburn while having fibroids.
Can fibroids cause heartburn?
Yes, fibroids may cause heartburn. If a fibroid gets large enough, it may put pressure on the abdomen. This may lead to digestion problems, including heartburn, gas, bloating, abdominal pain, and constipation.
Depending on the size and locality, fibroids may put pressure on your intestines, stomach, and urinary tract. If you get a sensation of acid reflux and heartburn, it means your fibroids are interfering with your digestive system (1).
Sometimes bloating, gas, and acid reflux are the early signs of fibroids. You should schedule a meeting with your doctor to provide details of your symptoms, medical history, and the severity of your condition.
What does research suggest?
In one of the case reports, a 25-year-old man reported persistent heartburn. The patient was diagnosed with inflammatory fibroid polyps. The fibroid had enlarged over time and a transverse mucosal break developed on the oesophagus (2).
According to another report, Motrin (ibuprofen) may also cause heartburn due to stomach irritation. Motrin is given to patients with uterine fibroids to reduce mild pain and heavy menstruation bleeding caused by fibroids (3).
What other factors may cause heartburn with fibroids?
Several other factors may cause heartburn even if you have fibroids. You may discuss your signs and symptoms, including medical history, with your doctor to identify the exact cause. Some of these factors include:
Alcohol may cause heartburn due to the toxic and irritant effect of alcohol on the gastric mucosal surface. Alcohol may also reduce lower oesophagal reflux pressure, thereby increasing the incidence of heartburn and acid reflux (4).
You may also get heartburn if you consume too much coffee, carbonated drinks, and citrus juices. Some studies suggest that decaffeinated coffee is less likely to cause heartburn as compared to caffeinated coffee (5).
Some studies suggest that smoking may have a negative impact on the reflux mechanism. Smoking may reduce the lower oesophageal sphincter pressure. Smoking also reduces salivary bicarbonate secretion, which otherwise buffers the acid in the lower oesophagus (6).
You may get acid reflux and heartburn after consuming a large portion of fatty and spicy meals. Fruits that have high citrus content, such as oranges, grapefruits, and lemons may cause heartburn in some individuals.
Anxiety and antidepressants
Anxiety and stress may increase acid in the stomach, leading to heartburn. Heartburn is one of the common side effects of some antidepressants like Prozac and Sertraline. However, the occurrence of heartburn is less common with venlafaxine and Wellbutrin.
What are the symptoms of heartburn due to fibroids?
You may have mild typical and atypical symptoms which may signify heartburn due to fibroids. You should consult your doctor if you experience any of these symptoms (7):
|Noncardiac chest pains
|Asthma or asthma-like symptoms
How to manage heartburn due to fibroids?
You should consult your doctor if you experience frequent heartburn and acid reflux due to fibroids. Your doctor may prescribe you medications and suggest some lifestyle modifications to reduce the feeling of heartburn.
You may try sleeping on your left side to reduce the occurrence of acid reflux and subsequent feeling of heartburn. Lying on your right side may induce transient lower oesophageal relaxation, thereby increasing the acid reflux episodes.
Proton pump inhibitor
Proton pump inhibitors reduce the release of stomach acid by turning off many of the acid pumps present in the stomach lining. Some examples include omeprazole, esomeprazole, and pantaprozole (8).
H2 receptor blockers
H2 receptor blockers are antagonists that bind to H2 receptors and reduce the amont of stomach acid secreted by the glands present in the stomach lining. Some examples include cimetidine, famotidine, and ranitidine (9).
Antacids work locally by neutralizing stomach acid, giving you relief from heartburn and indigestion. Some examples include Pepto-Bismol, Gaviscon, calcium carbonate, and aluminium hydroxide.
As a healthcare professional, I would suggest you closely monitor unusual symptoms which you may develop with time. Fibroids may cause heartburn, but sometimes heartburn can lead to the diagnosis of fibroids.
Always take your medication as directed by your physician to ensure safe and effective use of drugs. You should complete your course of medication recommended for heartburn to get maximum effect.
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Uterine fibroids: Overview. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK279535
Yamane T, Uchiyama K, Ishii T, Ishii H, Takizawa R, Omura M, Fujise K, Tajiri H. Case of inflammatory fibroid polyp of the esophagogastric junction. Digestive Endoscopy. 2009 Apr;21(2):97-100. https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1111/j.1443-1661.2009.00833.x
Spies JB. Uterine Artery Embolization (UAE): An alternative to surgery for patients with uterine fibroids. https://citeseerx.ist.psu.edu/document?repid=rep1&type=pdf&doi=97e9f996513fedb61c74e2a4e309fa1a2714872c
Content AZ, Pain F. GERD Diet Research Evidence 3 Article 3-Alcohol and Smoking. https://www.enetmd.com/content/gerd-diet-research-evidence-3-0
DiBaise JK. A randomized, double-blind comparison of two different coffee-roasting processes on development of heartburn and dyspepsia in coffee-sensitive individuals. Digestive diseases and sciences. 2003 Apr;48:652-6. https://link.springer.com/article/10.1023/A:1022860019852
Dennish GW, Castell DO. The Inhibitory Effect of Smoking on the Lower Esophageal Sphincter. Annals of Internal Medicine. 1971 May 1;74(5):834-. https://www.acpjournals.org/doi/abs/10.7326/0003-4819-74-5-834_1
Henry MA. Diagnosis and management of gastroesophageal reflux disease. ABCD. Arquivos Brasileiros de Cirurgia Digestiva (São Paulo). 2014 Jul;27:210-5. https://www.scielo.br/j/abcd/a/ypHKhPWMST8F97KFQFpqQBv/?lang=en
Sachs G, Shin JM, Howden CW. The clinical pharmacology of proton pump inhibitors. Alimentary pharmacology & therapeutics. 2006 Jun;23:2-8. https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1111/j.1365-2036.2006.02943.x
Huang JQ, Hunt RH. Pharmacological and pharmacodynamic essentials of H2-receptor antagonists and proton pump inhibitors for the practising physician. Best practice & research Clinical gastroenterology. 2001 Jun 1;15(3):355-70. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S1521691801901842